The Cubs came into this afternoon's game in Mesa, sporting the major-league's worst pre-season ERA to date, at 6.61. And things appear only to have got worse, as the Angels have just put up an eight-spot on them. In the third inning. Off Carlos Silva.
If I were in the Cubs' dugout... Well, I wouldn't be in the Cubs' dugout, shall we say.
Actually, that's a little unfair. Silva's previous spring fight involved him in an altercation with team-mate Aramis Ramirez, whose error played a part in a six-run inning during the pitcher's first Cactus League outing. This one was all on Silva, and though the wind was blowing strongly out at Hohokam today, it wasn't as if that contributed to a slug-fest on the field.
Instead, Carlos suffered death by a thousand cuts, as Anaheim went single, HBP, RBI single, RBI single, RBI single, RBI single, RBI single, lineout, two-RBI double. Silva was yanked, but the inherited runner scored, leaving him with a line of 2.1 IP, 11 H, 8 ER.
Silva's spring ERA is now 29.70, having allowed fourteen hits and 11 earned runs in 3.1 innings of work, and he appears to be doing a marvelous job of pitching his way off the roster. With the Cubs on the hook for an awful lot of money this year [I forgot that Seattle are chipping in, but we're still talking about $7.5 million[, he'll be given every opportunity to make it. But these early outings have just been so horrible, the "Nightmare Trade" of Silva for Milton Bradley may now be favoring the Mariners.