Chicago Cubs

Chicago Cubs Open the Season Up with a Whimper to the Pittsburgh Pirates

CHICAGO, IL - APRIL 01: Ryan Dempster #36 of the Chicago Cubs throws a first inning pitch while playing the Pittsburgh Pirates during opening day at Wrigley Field on April 1, 2011 in Chicago, Illinois.  (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
Gregory Shamus/Getty Images
Ryan NeimanContributor IIIApril 1, 2011

Is it next year yet?

If today is any indication how the Chicago Cubs season will play out, fans will wait anxiously for the next season to begin.

The struggles for the Cubs that plagued them all last season continued in their opening game against the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Bad pitching, bad fielding, and bad hitting, all of which are the formula for a bad ball-game.

The Cubs had a chance to break the game open against their newest nemesis, the Pirates, in the fourth inning when they had the bases loaded with only one man out.  However, the Cubs were only able to scratch across one run when Carlos Pena grounded into a fielders choice.

Ryan Dempster was cruising through the first four innings, but he labored in the fifth.  

Neil Walker delivered a crushing grand slam to put the Pirates up for good, 4-2.

Andrew McCuthchen would add to the Pirates lead with a home run of his own with a runner on, to put the Pirates up 6-2.

The Cubs did provide a glimpse of hope in the bottom of the seventh, when they rallied to cut the lead to 6-3.

But, the annual theme of lack of clutch hits continued.

The lone bright spot for the Cubs was there bullpen.

Entering the season with a bunch of question marks, the Cubs bullpen threw 2 1/3 innings of shut out ball when Dempster was relieved.

This is just the first game of the season for the Cubs, but if they continue to falter against the Pirates, it will be a long year.

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