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Those stupid Cubs are stealing our thunder. Lose already you overachieving sons of bitches.

Biggest Contribution: JJ Putz, +36.6%
Biggest Suckfest: Yuniesky Betancourt, -20.3%
Most Important At Bat: Broussard single, +17.2%
Most Important Pitch: Rios strikeout, +12.9%
Total Contribution by Pitcher(s): +39.4%
Total Contribution by Position Players: +4.8%
Total Contribution by Opposition: +5.8%

(What is this chart?)

Maybe it's because it's Friday, maybe it's because I'm exhausted from starting a new job, or maybe it's because I'm still worn out from that Red Sox series, but try as I might, I just can't come up with anything to write, and now I'm tired of fruitlessly wracking my mind for an hour. I'd call it a night off, but it isn't, really, since I already gave my brain a workout. That's annoying.

If I weren't taking a night off, these are the things I'd mention:

  • Jarrod Washburn's strikeout rate is the lowest of his career, down 10% from 2006.

  • Of the eight hits we got off Dustin McGowan in five innings, the only one that went for extra-bases came from our leadoff guy. However, the lineup did do a good job of making him work, because he wasn't throwing strikes, and a month ago that would've resulted in a shutout. This is, what, five bases loaded walks in four games?

  • There was no reason for Mike Hargrove to take Sean Green out of the game after an inning. Doing so led to all kinds of trouble in the eighth, and forced us to burn through three pitchers and give JJ another five-out save. I don't know if it's going to hurt us down the road, but it certainly won't help.

  • Mike Blowers needs to quit doling out the rally fries when the other team is batting.

  • With his o'fer tonight, Yuniesky Betancourt's season batting line is down to .278/.301/.383. Throw in his come-and-go defense and he's easily been the worst position player on the team so far. With any other closer, the miscue he made in the eighth (on what was ridiculously ruled a single by John McDonald) could've come back to cost us real real bad. Thank goodness that JJ's inhuman.

  • Don't be discouraged by the Angels and Indians winning. We're only two back of the Wild Card (Detroit now), and if you think it's annoying not being able to gain a game when Baltimore had LA behind in the late innings, think what it must feel like to follow the Angels and know that even playing the best baseball of anyone in the league isn't enough to shake us. Or think what it must feel like to follow the A's and see everything slipping away. The Mariners are on a tear, and as long as they keep winning, things will sort themselves out quite nicely.

Halladay/Batista tomorrow night at 7:05pm. I hope you like routine grounders to short.