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Cubs Sun Apr 18 2010

Cubs Weekly Round Up

The Cubs opened the week at home on Monday against the Brewers. They won their home opener 9-5. Game two would belong to them as they beat the Brew Crew 7-6. The victory would be their first series win of the season. They would miss the chance to sweep their rivals to the North as the Brewers salvaged game three 8-6.

Friday the Cubs took on the last place Houston Astros who came in with a record of 1-8. The Cubbies took game one 7-2. They trailed 2-1 early, but a six run seventh inning put the Cubs in the win column. Derrek Lee's three-run homer would put the game out of reach. Cubs starter Carlos Silva pitched seven strong innings.

The hapless Stros took game two 4-3 behind a strong start from ace Roy Oswalt. The Cubs did make it interesting by scoring three in the bottom of the eighth, but their comeback bid would end there. The series finale on Sunday afternoon would belong to the Astros.

Ryan Dempster pitched a solid seven and two-third innings striking out eight Houston hitters. Despite leaving the game with a 2-0 lead it was the bullpen who failed to preserve a quality outing by Dempster. This time it was Carlos Marmol. It was his first blown save of the season. The game would go into extras as Marmol gave up the tying run in the top of the ninth.

Thankfully for the Cubs this one didn't go 20 like their National League Central counterparts the Cardinals last night. Sean Marshall has been solid early on this season, but today wasn't one of his better outings. He suffered his first loss of the year after giving up the go-ahead run in the top of the tenth to Houston's Pedro Feliz. They would go on to lose 3-2 to a lowly Houston team.

It is tough to decide what is worse, the bullpen blowing a quality outing by Ryan Dempster or the fact that they lost two out of three to a team with one of the worst records in baseball. For all intents and purposes the Cubs should've finished this home stand 5-1 possibly 4-2 instead they finish 3-3. While it is still early the same problems keep occurring. Lack of run production in key spots and the bullpen continues to struggle to hold leads late in games.

These problems need to be addressed and soon because pretty soon it isn't going to be early anymore. It will be June before we can bat an eyelash and they will be finding themselves several games out of first if this trend continues. There is some good news to be had, however. Tom Gorzelanny who took a line drive off his left deltoid Saturday afternoon is alright and is expected to make his next scheduled start on Thursday. Also Ted Lilly is looking to be back by Saturday at the earliest.

The Cubs take their show on the road to New York to take on the Mets. Their road trip includes four games in New York and three in Milwaukee before returning home next Monday.

Randy Wells (1-0, 2.92) will take on the Mets Jon Niese (0-1, 6.55) Monday night. First pitch is at 6:10 p.m. CT.

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