Brooks Raley turns in solid effort, but Cubs lose to Rockies
BY NEIL HAYES firstname.lastname@example.org August 25, 2012 8:50PM
Rookie Brooks Raley yielded two runs in five innings and left with a lead Saturday against the Rockies, but the Cubs couldn’t hold it. | David Banks~Getty Images
ROCKIES AT CUBS
The facts: 1:20 p.m., Ch. 9, 720-AM.
The starters: Jhoulys Chacin (1-3, 6.16 ERA) vs. Chris Volstad (0-9, 6.88).
Updated: September 27, 2012 11:41AM
When asked before the Cubs’ 4-3 loss Saturday to the Colorado Rockies what he wanted to see from rookie left-hander Brooks Raley, manager Dale Sveum didn’t hesitate.
‘‘A complete-game shutout,’’ Sveum said.
While Raley’s fourth major-league start wasn’t that, it was his third solid outing. Raley left the game with a 3-2 lead after allowing two runs and five hits in five innings.
‘‘We didn’t pull off a couple of double plays that were sitting right in our laps right there,’’ Sveum said. ‘‘It kind of changed the game around.’’
The Cubs failed to execute two double plays in the seventh, one because of an errant throw by shortstop Starlin Castro. Castro’s relay pulled first baseman Anthony Rizzo off the bag, and the Rockies’ DJ LeMahieu was safe at first. LeMahieu later scored the go-ahead run to send the Cubs to their 19th loss in 24 games.
In the bottom of the inning, with Josh Vitters at the plate against left-hander Rex Brothers and two outs, Brett Jackson and Joe Mather attempted what appeared to be a double steal. Mather, though, was nailed at second for the third out.
Sveum said neither player was given the steal sign on the play.
‘‘It was missed,’’ he said. ‘‘The coach tells you not to go anywhere, and you do. It was missed.’’
Jackson doubled in the second, then homered into the basket in left during the Cubs’ three-run fourth.
‘‘I hit that homer about 367 feet,’’ Jackson said. ‘‘I think the wall was 368, but I’ll certainly take it.’’
The Cubs optioned left-hander Chris Rusin to Class AAA Iowa to make room for Raley, but Rusin might not be there for long. He is expected to be among three or four pitchers called up when major-league rosters expand Saturday.
‘‘Obviously you don’t know what’s going to happen yet, but there’s a well-above-average chance he’ll be back in September, so we can get another look at him,’’ Sveum said.
Outfielder Tony Campana also likely will be recalled when rosters can expand to 40 on Saturday. Camapana was sent down this month to make room for Jackson, but his speed alone makes him a valuable bench player.
‘‘We’re not going to bring 15 guys up or anything like that,’’ Sveum said. ‘‘Most of [the Cubs’ better prospects] are here anyway.’’
Rusin made his major-league debut Tuesday against the Milwaukee Brewers at Miller Park and allowed only an infield single in five innings. He also tripled in his first at-bat.
‘‘He’s definitely a guy you want to see more of,’’ Sveum said.