Harden– +1 to Defense

One of the most exciting aspects of the Cubs-Giants emotional roller coaster yesterday was the performance of Rich Harden.  He was a strikeout machine, fanning 10 batters in 5+ innings pitched.  Before, when kids in Chicago heard the word “Harden,” they thought of a move their metapod pokemon could do that would add +1 to defense; however, now they will think of Rich Harden, the newest Cubs vehicle to victory.  Harden’s range in velocity on his fastball as well as his excellent command threw the Giants’ hitters off.  Add his great change-up to the mix, and we have a new prevailing wind originating at the plate and heading to center field.  I am looking forward to his next start which is looking like it will happen in the series with Arizona after the All-Star break.

Speaking of the All-Star break, hopefully Marmol will emerge after some much needed R&R recharged and ready to dominate again.  Corey and I were speculating that perhaps Marmol has been overused in the first half; he currently has 52.1 IP–last year he ended up with 69.1 for the entire season.  Hopefully another reliever will become a reliable lock-down pitcher for Lou to fall back on, so he doesn’t have to always place that burden on Marmol.

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