|12-13, 4.06||16-6, 3.02|
Well, two of Bernie's favorite free agent pitchers take the mound today in the rubber game of our last road series of the season. You can't overstate just how good Dempster's been this year. He's made himself a lot of money w/ his spectacular season -- 4th among NL starters in WPA, 7th in FIP -- no-hitters aside, he's been the best of a strong Cubs' starting rotation this year. Still, he'll be 32 next May and will probably throw around 230-240 innings this year when it's all said and done. His last season w/ more than 200 was 2002. Is anybody ready to give him $60 million? Have we learned nothing from the news about Carp?
The most interesting aspect of this game may be seeing which team comes out w/ the most feckless lineup, now that the Cubs have clinched. In Tony's resolute effort to prove just how inept the Cards are, I'd expect a little more Kennedy and Lopez will probably hit cleanup again. Anyone think Pujols is due for a day off? Sweet Lou's going to have to work to create a weaker lineup but I'd expect to see most of his regulars get the day off. We'll probably see Card-killer Henry Blanco and God-knows-who-else. Hell, someone here may play on a beer-league softball team w/ more firepower than what the two long-time friends will put on the field. There's a good chance Dempster and Looper add a few more coins to their respective piggy banks this afternoon.