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    Cubs Continue to Struggle – Lose 2 out of 3 to Nats – Will Pinella Lose Job

    Cubs Padres Baseball

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    With a favorable home schedule for 24 of the last 40 games of the 2009 MLB schedule, the Cubs still had aspirations of winning the NL Wild Card and reaching post-season play for a 3rd consecutive year.  But after losing 2 of 3 games to the lowly Washington Nationals – the worst team in all of baseball – those aspirations have all been washed away.  With that realization, speculation is that Cubs Manager Lou Pinella should take the blame.  He answered those cries the other night at Wrigley Field.

    If you take a look at his roster, you can easily see that the 2009 collapse is not his fault.  4 of the 5 Cubs starting pitchers have been on the DL at least once during the season.  The Cubs best hitter – Aramis Ramirez – missed 2 months with a dislocated shoulder.  Newly signed closer Kevin Gregg was a complete disaster with 6 blown saves and a hefty 4.32 ERA.  Closer in training Carlos Marmol has had control problems all season long – 55 walks in 59 1/3 innings pitched, good for a 1.48 WHIP and a 3.64 ERA.  Poor performances from free agent signees Milton Bradley (.259 batting average and only 11 HR’s and 35 RBI’s) and Aaron Miles (.177 batting average).  Mike Fontenot was handed the Cubs 2nd base job after the un-popular trading of Mark DeRosa, and he quickly showed that he is not an everyday player with a .225 batting average with only 9 HR’s and 37 RBI’s.  Throw in awful years from Alfonso Soriano and Geovany Soto, and you can see why the Cubs have struggled so much in 2009.  In fact, it’s a miracle that the Cubs even have a winning record.

    Kudos to Pinella to tell people to blame him.  It would be easy to rattle off the numbers like I just did, but he had stood by his players, for better or for worse, and will likely be back at the Cubs helm in 2010.  Not sure if that is a good thing or a bad thing for Lou, but at least he’s a trooper, ready to see this thing through…

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