The righthander is 5-1 with a 2.34 ERA (20 ER/77.0 IP) in 13 starts this season with Oakland, fanning 92 batters in 77.0 innings, an average of 10.8 strikeouts per nine innings. His 2.34 ERA would rank second in the majors behind only Oakland's Justin Duchscherer (1.98), but he is just shy of the necessary innings to qualify. Harden's .206 batting average against would rank third in the majors. He has 92 strikeouts and 31 walks this season, one strikeout shy of a three-to-one strikeout-to-walk ratio. Harden has allowed only five home runs in 77.0 innings.
Among pitchers with at least 12 starts this season, Harden leads the majors with 10.75 strikeouts per nine innings (San Francisco's Tim Lincecum is next at 9.49) and he ranks 12th with 10.40 baserunners allowed per nine innings.
Harden spent one month this season on the disabled list (April 10-May 11) with a strained right shoulder and has averaged six innings per start since returning, four times pitching into the seventh inning or beyond. He has turned in a quality start in seven of his last 10 outings, posting a 2.02 ERA (14 ER/62.1 IP) and a .190 batting average against in that span starting May 17. Overall, he has allowed two earned runs or less in 10 of his 13 starts.
The 6-foot-1, 195-pound Harden went 3-0 with a 0.68 ERA (2 ER/26.2 IP) in four starts vs. the National League during interleague play this season, limiting those foes to a .132 batting average. In his career, Harden is 5-1 with a 1.81 ERA (11 ER.54.2 IP) in 10 interleague appearances, nine as a starter.
A native of Victoria, British Columbia, Harden is 10-3 with a 2.95 ERA (49 ER/149.1 IP) during the last three seasons, limiting opponents to a .201 batting average, though five stints on the disabled list have kept him to 29 appearances, 26 as a starter. His 2.95 ERA and .201 batting average against would lead all big league starters if he had accumulated the necessary innings during the last three seasons to qualify for league-leader rankings. In his career, he is 18-3 with a 1.45 ERA (35 ER/217.1 IP) when pitching at least seven innings (29 starts).
Gaudin, 25, is 5-3 with a 3.59 ERA (25 ER/62.2 IP) in 26 appearances (six starts) with Oakland this season, including a 3.38 ERA (10 ER/26.2 IP) in his 20 relief appearances. He has not allowed an earned run in 15 of his 20 relief outings and has pitched 1.0 inning or more in 17 of those appearances. The 5-foor-10, 185 pound Gaudin joins the Cubs having turned in a 1.50 ERA (1 ER/6.0 IP) in his last seven relief outings beginning June 21.
The New Orleans native has pitched all or part of the last six seasons in the big leagues with Tampa Bay (2003-04), Toronto (2005) and Oakland (2006-08), going 24-23 with two saves and a 4.33 ERA (25 203 ER/421.2 IP). He returned to the bullpen this season after making 34 starts with Oakland last season. Gaudin is 8-5 with two saves and a 3.63 ERA (59 ER/146.1 IP) in 111 relief appearances in his career.
Gallagher, 22, is 3-4 with a 4.45 ERA (29 ER/58.2 IP) in 12 appearances (10 starts) with the Cubs this season. He has split the last two seasons between the Cubs and Triple-A Iowa. Gallagher was originally selected by the Cubs in the fifth round of the 2006 Draft.
Murton, 26, has split the 2008 season between the Cubs and Triple-A, batting .250 (10-for-40) with two doubles and six RBI in 19 games for Chicago this season. He has spent all or part of the last four seasons in the majors, hitting .294 (256-for-870) with 28 home runs and 104 RBI in 308 big league games. He was acquired by the Cubs on July 31, 2004 from the Boston Red Sox as part of a four-team, six-player trade.
Patterson, 25, has also split the season between the Cubs and Triple-A and hit .237 (9-for-38) during his three stints in the big leagues this season. He was originally selected by the Cubs in the eighth round of the 2004 Draft.
Donaldson, 22, batted .217 (51-for-235) with six home runs and 23 RBI in 63 games for Single-A Peoria this season. He was selected by the Cubs in the second round of the 2007 Draft.