Results tagged ‘ Tony Campana ’

7/4 Cubs lineup

The All-Star Game is considered the halfway mark in the season, but Wednesday is the Cubs’ official midway point. It’s game No. 81 of the season. Chicago has won six of its last eight games, it’s best eight-game stretch since Sept. 4-12, 2011. The Fourth of July hasn’t been kind. The Cubs have lost 11 of their last 13 games on the holiday. Paul Maholm takes the mound as the Cubs try to bounce back against the Braves. Here’s the lineup:

DeJesus CF

Castro SS

Rizzo 1B

Soriano LF

LaHair RF

Soto C

Barney 2B

Valbuena 3B

Maholm P

Extra bases:

* Tony Campana is second in the Major Leagues with 25 stolen bases, yet has played 57 games. He’s topped his season total of 24 set last year, and is one of three Cubs since 2000 to reach 25 steals before the All-Star break. The list includes Eric Young (27) in 2000 and Juan Pierre (30) in ’06.

* James Russell has a 2.28 ERA in 99 games out of the bullpen since the start of the 2011 season. It’s the second-lowest mark by a NL left-hander in that span.

* Matt Garza (4-6, 4.01 ERA) closes the series on Thursday against lefty Mike Minor (4-6, 6.20 ERA).

– Carrie Muskat

7/2 Cubs lineup

The Cubs have two All-Stars in the lineup Monday as they open a four-game series against the Braves. Both Starlin Castro and Bryan LaHair get the start against against Atlanta right-hander Tommy Hanson. Plus, Tony Campana is back and leading off. Here’s the lineup:

Campana CF

Castro SS

Rizzo 1B

Soriano LF

LaHair RF

Clevenger C

Barney 2B

Valbuena 3B

Samardzija P

– Carrie Muskat

6/18 Cubs lineup

Bryan LaHair gets his first outfield start. Here’s the lineup vs. White Sox:

DeJesus CF

Castro SS

LaHair RF

Soriano DH

Clevenger 1B

Barney 2B

Valbuena 3B

Soto C

Campana LF

– Carrie Muskat

6/15 Place your bets

Ryan Dempster is $500 richer Friday after winning a bet with Tony Campana. The wager? Who would hit the first triple.

“When I first got here last year, he bet me he would hit a triple before I did,” Campana said. “He did. Today was the first one for both of us. When I made the bet with him, I thought it would be the easiest money I’d make in my whole life. I didn’t think Adrian Gonzalez would be playing right field and dive and miss the ball. He got me.”

Dempster tripled with one out in the second, the second of his career and first since 2002. Campana reminded Dempster of the wager.

“I think I would’ve gotten away with it if I didn’t say anything,” Campana said.

The Cubs speedy outfielder was so confident he would get the triple first, he tried to raise the wager. Don’t think Campana will be placing any more bets, not even as to who would get the most steals.

“With my luck, he’d somehow steal four in a game and beat me there, too,” Campana said.

Dempster was all smiles.

“I try to spread my triples out every 10 years,” he said. “I was excited to finally get to utilize my wheels. Campana and I had a bet for first triple and I won. Imagine that. I’m feeling pretty good about that.”

 — Carrie Muskat

6/14 Extra bases

Thursday’s crowd of 42,292 was the biggest of the season at Wrigley Field. The Cubs-Tigers series drew 124,782, the largest mid-week, three-game series in the ballpark’s history.

“I love it here,” Tigers manager Jim Leyland said. “It’s a great atmosphere. I’ve always said a Cubs game is more than a game, it’s a happening. It’s kind of a neat atmosphere. Fortunately, we came in and won two out of three.”

That’s what happened, unfortunately for the Cubs, who lost, 5-2, on Thursday.

* Leyland was impressed by the Cubs middle infield of Darwin Barney and Starlin Castro.

“[Barney] had a hell of a series against us,” Leyland said of the second baseman, who is riding a five-game hitting streak. “He didn’t do anything wrong against us.”

As for Castro, Leyland said: “That shortstop looks like he’s going to be a superstar to me. I’m just looking, but he looks to me like he’s got a chance to be a superstar. That kid Castro is smooth, doesn’t panic, got some power.”

* Tigers ace Justin Verlander struck out eight and wanted to make sure Tony Campana wasn’t running around the bases.

“He gets on base and wreaks havoc,” Verlander said. “That’s the guy, for me, today, that I focused on.”

Said Campana: “My first at-bat, he was throwing it seemed like B.P. fastballs, they were like 90 miles an hour, and sometimes you look up at the board and he was throwing 97 [mph]. Adding and subtracting, that keeps us off-balance — that’s good pitching.”

* Travis Wood (0-3) took the loss in his fourth career Interleague start. He allowed the leadoff batter to reach in each of his seven innings pitched, but limited the Tigers to two hits in nine at-bats with runners in scoring position. He also induced three double play balls.

* Alfonso Soriano has hit in 10 straight games. It’s his 17th career hitting streak of at least 10 games. He’s batting .314 with seven doubles, 12 homers, 24 RBIs and a .735 slugging percentage since May 15.

* Next up are the Red Sox. Dale Sveum was a coach there for two seasons, including 2004 when they won a World Series. But only David Ortiz and Kevin Youkillis remain.

“To me, it’s no different from any other series,” Sveum said. “You’re playing an American League team, you’re playing a good offense. You prepare for them like any other.”

Pitching matchups:

Friday: Ryan Dempster (2-3, 2.31) vs. Daisuke Matsuzaka (0-1, 7.20)

Saturday: Jeff Samardzija (5-4, 3.96) vs. Jon Lester (3-4, 4.57)

Sunday: Paul Maholm (4-5, 4.91) vs. Josh Beckett (4-7, 4.14)

– Carrie Muskat

6/6 Greinke K’s Cubs

The Cubs might have had a chance if they faced Zack Greinke on the moon. He struck out 12 and gave up two hits over seven innings in Milwaukee’s 8-0 win Wednesday night.

“He threw me something different every at-bat I went up there,” said Chicago’s Tony Campana, who struck out three times against Greinke, and once more in the eighth. “He challenged me my first at-bat and the next at-bat he started me off slow and the last at-bat he did something totally different again. He was on today, and I wasn’t.”

Greinke, who said he likes being home, in part, because the coffee is better than in hotels, gave up a double by Alfonso Soriano leading off the second and another by Starlin Castro with one out in the third. He showed he was human by walking two.

The Cubs set a season-high Tuesday by striking out 14 times, but topped that Wednesday when they fanned 15 times.

“If you’re going to strike out that many times in back to back nights, you’re not going to put many runs up, that’s for sure,” Dale Sveum said. “Greinke, that’s about as good as he’s going to get down on the zone. He had command of all his pitches. That was pretty dominant, obviously. We didn’t put together any good swings or anything. He kept the ball down and away, he kept his breaking ball down.”

– Carrie Muskat 

6/3 Numbers game

The Cubs lost their ninth straight game on the road Saturday. This is their longest skid away from Wrigley Field since a nine-game losing streak Aug. 25-Sept. 10, 2006. The offense continued to sputter as the Cubs now have scored a run in nine of their last 72 innings on the road and scored more than one run in only three of those innings.

“Once again, we couldn’t muster anything against the starting pitcher again,” Dale Sveum said. “It’s the same old thing. It’s unbelievable how we have a tough time scoring against starting pitchers.”

Here are some ugly numbers from the nine road losses:

* The Cubs are 12-for-68 (.176) with runners in scoring position in those nine road games and have stranded 60 baserunners. They’ve been outscored, 42-24.

* Starting pitchers have held the Cubs to 12 runs over 60 1/3 innings for a 1.79 ERA.

* The Cubs have three quality starts in the nine: Jeff Samardzija on May 23 vs. the Astros, Ryan Dempster on May 25 vs. the Astros, and Matt Garza on Saturday vs. the Giants.

* A win Sunday would help the Cubs avoid a 10-game road skid, which would be their first since Sept. 13-30, 2000.

Extra bases:

* The nine road losses are just part of a longer stretch. The Cubs have lost 14 of their last 17 games, and this year, more than half of their games — 52 percent (27 of 52) — have been decided by two runs or less. They are 10-17 in those games.

* Tony Campana picked up his sixth bunt single of the season and his 12th infield hit. He is tied with Juan Pierre for the National League lead in bunt singles and is tied for first in the NL with  Emilio Bonifacio in infield hits. Campana is batting .375 (9-for-24) when leading off an inning this year.

– Carrie Muskat

6/1 Cubs lineup

Tony Campana is leading off Friday night for the Cubs as they open a four-game series against the Giants at AT&T Park. It’s the second time this season Campana has led off. The Cubs are 10-11 when he starts. Here’s the lineup against lefty Madison Bumgarner:

Campana CF

Castro SS

Mather 3B

Soriano LF

Johnson RF

Baker 1B

Barney 2B

Clevenger C

Maholm P

– Carrie Muskat

5/23 Tony takes off

5/22 It’s a bird, it’s a plane …

The Cubs lost their eighth in a row Tuesday night, dropping a 2-1 decision to the Astros. They had a chance in the eighth. Reed Johnson singled with one out and was lifted for pinch-runner Tony Campana, who reached third on an errant throw by Wilton Lopez. Campana did a Superman-style dive over third baseman Matt Downs and sailed past the bag but was able to scamper back in time. However, the acrobatics were wasted as Lopez struck out both Starlin Castro and Alfonso Soriano.

“With Campana there, it was huge,” Dale Sveum said. “Anything put in play, he would score on it. [Soriano] hit a solo shot but we can’t seem to get that three-run shot.”

Give Campana credit for hustling.

“That’s unbelievable, man,” Soriano said. “That dive he made — I thought we had an opportunity to tie the game but we came up short.”

What was Sveum thinking when Campana was halfway between second and third?

“[I was thinking] ‘Uh oh,'” Sveum said. “You’ve got to be able to use that speed and test it. I would’ve had no problem if he was thrown out because he was being aggressive and he was in the game for that reason.”

– Carrie Muskat

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