Transmission's Archives

Game 146 Recap: Cubs 4 Brewers 5

Not Tonight

Box Score, Play Log, Game Graphs

W - Nelson (8-14), Clubhouse attendants who don't want to clean up after champagne parties

L - Grimm (1-1 ), Dummies who stay up late when they should be preparing to teach tomorrow.

S - Thornburg (10)

Things to Take from This Game

 1. Montgomery looks good.

Mike Montgomery pitched a fine 6 innings with just 1 earned run, two more coming in unearned, walking one and striking out seven.  For a sixth starter in September it was an encouraging audition for the post-season, or 2017. He even knocked in a run with a single back up the middle, for his first career hit.

 2.  Russell with some yips.

Hopefully it's just a one-off thing, but Russell sailed throws high, wide-right, and wide-left tonight, for two errors. One of them resulted in two runs. Stay tuned.

3.  Soler hit a ball very hard.

Soler's laser-beam 2-run HR and a couple of Heyward doubles down each line were the offensive highlights of the night.

 

The deflating details, below

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Game 43 Recap: Cubs 3, Cardinals 4

A(nother) tough loss.

Box Score, Play Log, Game Graphs

W - Rosenthal (2-1), late-inning drama, Cubbery, Cardinals pinch-hitting

L - Warren (3-1), wasting great starts, confidence

Things to Take from This Game

1. Lackey makes it look easy, until...

 Lackey worked briskly, threw strikes, and had a good fastball and swing-and-miss slider--he K'd five consecutivey, early in the game. This was the sort of bulldog or workhorse mentality, take your pick, that we were promised with his off-season signing. For the first 6.3 innings it looked like RBI singles by Montero and Rizzo, and an RBI fielder's choice by Russell would hold up. Lackey finished with 4 hits and 1 walk allowed, and 9 strikeouts.

2. ... Adams continues Cards pinch-hit heroics

Take a look at the game graph, which nicely illustrates the late-inning drama. See that jagged move upward? Adams's pinch-hit game-tying home run moved the Cards' Win Expectency from 15.8% to 52%. It was really quite stunning, in the context of how effortlessly Lackey had been cruising along.

3. Grichuk saddles Warren with the loss.

Continuing the theme set by Lackey, Warren looked dominant for his first five batters, only to jar us out of whatever remaining sense of confidence we might have had. He rolled a slider, and the badly slumping Grichuk hit out to right for the game-winning home run.

Game 40 Recap: Cubs 8, Giants 1

Oh, dear god.

Box Score, Play Log, Game Graphs

W - Arrieta (8-0), Outfield Walls (Countless-1), rebuilding our run differential, staying up late

L - Peavy (1-5), Heyward's torso (1 of 1), Balls in McCovey Cove (1 of 104), getting up early

 

Things to Take from The Game

1. Cubs lose Heyward to probably-serious injury on certainly-best catch of the year.

Jason Heyward made a Jason Heyward catch running full-speed before making a leaping, twisting, belly-flop dive. He hit hard with his right side just before his left shoulder and face smashed into the outfield wall. He appeared to be in a lot of pain and was helped off the field by a couple of trainers. Early reports identified it as a "right torso and abnominal area" injury.

2. Soler has a very encouraging game.

Soler showed a good approach in his at bats, and was rewarded with a single and a home run, coming right after Zobrist put one in the Cove. Soler also had an extra-base-hit-robbing catch at the wall, and then an also helpful, if less-than-graceful, catch on another deep drive.

3. The pitching duel is exactly what we thought it would be.

Peavy looked every bit as bad as his line, and it could have been worse. The big damage was a Kris Bryant three-run home run. Arrieta had to wait through long Cubs half-innings, a replay challenge, and an injury delay, and didn't look like Peak Arrieta early on. He settled in though, and gave up just one run through seven, looking steadier the deeper he went in the game.

Game 37 Recap: Cubs 2, Brewers 4

Brew Who?

Box Score, Play Log, Game Graphs

W - Anderson (2-5), 3 unassisteds, shifting the third baseman, the "tourniquet" stat.

L - Hendricks (2-3),  lame no-hit bids, homerless streaks.

S - Jeffress (11), what I should do more often when doing recap drafts.

Things to Take from This Game.

1.  Chase Anderson?!

Chase Anderson looked every bit as awful as his over-6 ERA suggested in the first few innings, with rockets getting hit all around the park.  None of them dropped in, though, and he threw strikes, eventually settling in to a very less-than-dominating no-hit bid.

2. One bad inning.

Other than a Lucroy solo homer, Hendricks looked sharp and efficient through the first five. But he got knocked around in the sixth, with the big damage being a gap-splitting double by Chris Carter.  Cahill came in to get eight straight outs and looked quite sharp doing it. Stuff-wise, the Cubs pitching looked better than the Brewers, most all of the night.

3.  Late firepower

With two outs in the ninth, Chase Anderson suddenly remembered he was Chase Anderson. Blame it on going with an off-brand hypnotist. Heyward did what few thought possible, and barreled up a ball for his first home run of the season, just escaping the reach of the right fielder, Santana. Bryant followed with a no-doubter to left, but Jeffress then came on to K Rizzo and end the game. Those of us who stuck around to the bitter end appreciated this modest moment of drama in an otherwise stupid game.

Game 9 Recap: Cubs 8, Reds 1

No Contest

Box Score Play Log Game Graphs

W - Hammel (1-0), Augie Ojeda tribute videos. Harry singing the Stretch

L - Iglesias (1-1), pseudonymous middle-relievers, throwing to unoccupied bases

 

Things to Take from This Game

1. Hammel pitches around some walks

Hammel was reasonably sharp, pitching out of a couple of instances of mild-to-moderate trouble. 4 hits, 4 walks, 3 Ks in 6 IP with no runs allowed, and a booming RBI double at a point when the game still was awkwardly close.

2. Bryant heats up

Kris Bryant hit his second home run in as many days, going 2 for 3 with a walk overall. Fowler also had another big night, with a fine defensive play in CF thrown in, as well.

3. Best Team in Baseball

The first team to 8 wins played an errorless game with really no blemishes of any sort to speak of, other than a bit of wildness from Hammel and Grimm getting into some utterly inconsequential trouble in the 9th that he soon got out of. The consensus in Parachat was that the game was a sure thing by the time we were up 3-0.

Game 75 Recap: Cubs 1, Mets 0

Quick Work

Box Score Play Log Game Graphs

 

W - Hendricks (3-4),  MLB's average length of game, magic.

L - Niese (3-8), that Home Run Big Apple thingy, losing your game summary right before publishing.

S - Motte (3)

 

Things to Take from This Game

1.  Hendricks with a good outing.

Kyle Hendricks pitched 6 efficient, scoreless innings, giving up just one walk and three hits. He struck out six with lots of movement - if not always command - on all of his pitches. Other than a one-out double that was quickly pitched around, he wasn't in trouble at all. The defense also was flawless, save a bad route and awkward catch by Fowler.

2. The offense continues to struggle.

There isn't much to say about the offensive performance.  Castro walked twice.  Bryant had a hit and a walk. The scoring came from a no-doubt double by Szczur that scored Bryant. We loaded the bases, once, so there was that...

 

3. The bullpen delivered.

Rondon, Strop, and Motte each had convincing scoreless innings to preserve a 1-0 lead.

 

The 2 hour and 22 minute, happy details,  below

Game 70 Recap: Cubs 2, Dodgers 5

After further review... still lost.

Box Score, Play Log, Game Graphs

 

W- Who knows? Eh, Howell I guess (3-1), who cares, let's go home.

L- The very concept of the "Win" also, Hendricks (2-4).

S - Jansen (10)

Things to Take from This Game

1. Starters Struggle 

Hendricks was off his game, with the big damage coming on a Justin Turner 3-run Home Run. Bolsinger looked tougher, getting several Cubs to swing over a diving "spike" curveball, but he couldn't make it through five. With Bolsinger getting Rizzo to GIDP in the fifth and picking up some help from Howell to get out of the inning, the Dodgers shut down the only good shot at a big inning.
.

2. Denorfia gets TOOTBLANed

With two outs in the ninth and down by three, Denorfia got Thrown Out On the Bases Like a Nincompoop, running into the final out of the game trying to get to second on a liner off the left field wall.  Van Slyke got a perfect bounce off the wall to him, played it perfectly, threw perfectly, and still just barely beat Denorfia. And it's not as if we likely were to come back against Jansen down by three with two outs in the ninth and a runner on second.  But still, oof.

3. Grimm Looked Good

Justin Grimm struck out the first four batters he faced, in dominating fashion, before losing some steam in his second inning. It still was an encouraging performance.

 

The I-could-have-been-paying-more-attention-to-the-season-premier-of-Big-Brother-17,-but-instead-I-recapped-this?!?! details, below

 

Game 69 Recap: Cubs 1, Dodgers 0 (10 innings)

Nine Over

Box Score, Play Log, Game Graphs

 

W- Motte (5-1), fly balls to center, getting paid by the word, pitchers duels

L- Peralta (1-1) going to bed early, offense

Things to Take from This Game

 1. The Cubs "Know How to Win"?

For those who put weight in such things, this sure looked like a knowing-how-to-win/will-to-win/clutch/piss-vinegar-and-gumption sort of game.  An error-free pitcher's duel against a big-time opposing pitcher and team, won in extra innings by the supporting cast after yeoman's work from the bullpen. There's precious little to complain about with this victory.

 

2. Hammel outduels Greinke


Hammel looked in command of this game from the first pitch, and by both the line and the eyeball was superior to Greinke, who also was dealing.

 

3. Waiting to go to Jansen


0 to 0 after nine, Mattingly went to the just-off-the-DL Joel Peralta, not the unhittable Kenley Jansen.  Jansen only surfaced to clean up a bases loaded, no outs mess, and he nearly did.  If Gonzalez doesn't bobble a potential double-play ball at first, he might have made it out of the inning untouched.

 

4. Fan catch of the year.


Seriously. 

 

The gory details, below

 

Game 1 Recap: Cubs 5, Braves 16

I Returned to TCR to recap THIS?!?!

 

Box Score, Play Log, Game Graphs, Photos

 

W-  Lowe (1-0), calls for instant replay, people making their team or career debuts

L- Zambrano (0-1), dignity. 3 hours of my life

 

Things to Take from This Game

1.  Not So Good: Zambrano, Samardzija

Zambrano got knicked by a series of softly hit singles before giving up a 3-run home run to Neo Heyward.  Some throwing mistakes and a McCann homer in the second chased Zambrano from the game, having given up 8.   The fourth reliever in, Samardzija, walked three in a one third of an inning.

2.  Good:  Byrd, Marshall, Russell.

Byrd gave the Cubs a very early and short-lived lead with a 3-run homer in the first.  Marshall and Russell gave the Cubs a chance to get back in the game with a Ramirez 2-run Homer, as they pitched 4 and 2/3 of scoreless relief, before turning things over to Samardzija, Berg, and Grabow

3.  McLouth Lies like a Dog.  And Fakes It.  And Just Isn't Very Nice. 

Down 8-5 with Ramirez on 1st, Byrd smoked a liner to left center.  McLouth made a diving catch with the ball popping out on contact with the ground.  But McLouth faked the catch, threw it in, and the umpires, missing the call, declared Ramirez doubled off of first.   We went from having the tying run at the plate with no outs, to no on and two outs.  After Soriano predictbly ended the inning; it was all downhill from there.


 

The gory details, below

 

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Soriano by the Pitches

Hoping to understand Alfonso Soriano's hot and cold streaks this year, I turned to the incomparable Fan Graphs to break down his present and historical success against different pitches.  The results suggest that Soriano is losing the skill that made him one of the more feared hitters in the game, but that he might have found a method to compensate for this loss.  Below is a chart showing the percentage of fastballs Soriano has seen each year since 2005, with 2009 broken down per month. It also shows his ranking among hitters seeing the fewest fastballs, his "runs above average"  number on fastballs, (wFastball) and how high he ranks among all hitters, and his overall OPS. (As in, not specific to fastballs)  The most important thing to notice here is his wFB rank.

 

Date  Fastball%  FB% Rank  wFastball wFB Rank  OPS
2005  47.9  147/147  27.6  15/147  .821

2006

 54.1  150/159  23.7  25/159  .911
2007  54  150/161  23.3  27/161  .897
2008  53.2  134/145  17.9  38/145  .876
April 2009  45.9  196/197  3.3  55/197  .965

May 2009

 43  185/185  3.6  60/185  .657
June 2009  49.1  180/184  2.4  72/184  .585
July 2009  44.8  190/190  .7  112/190  .992
August 2009  36.7  179/190  -.6  156/190  .220

 

You probably have noticed a couple of striking trends going on here.  First, Soriano has progressively moved from being one of the most effective hitters in baseball against the fastball to being quite pedestrian. Second, pitchers have not noticed and adapted to this change:  They contiue to avoid throwing fastballs to Soriano as if he were the same hitter he was in 2005.  He's not.

So how do we explain Soriano's April and July, when he hit like the hitter for whom the Cubs offered that premium contract?

Finding  that answer requres looking at Soriano's results swinging at sliders.

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  • Lackey finishes with a 3.35 ERA. Currently good for 13th in the NL. Not bad for a guy signed to be a #3 starter in a 15-team league.

    He is also 6th in WHIP. Pretty amazing: Cubs have the #2, #3, #5 and #6 starters in WHIP.

    billybucks 6 hours 21 min ago view
  • Completely meaningless game, but Pena striking out Sean the Turd to with the bases loaded was very fun.

    Other than one bad game in SD, Pena has been very good. Even with that game, 9.0 IP, 13 K, 0.89 WHIP.

    billybucks 6 hours 25 min ago view
  • 101 wins...most since 1910 (104).

    neat. ...or sad. pick one. pick both. 'murica.

    crunch 6 hours 41 min ago view
  • Just looked up Grimm's stats -- after a great run, he gave up 2 runs vs. MIL then didn't pitch for 10 days. Don't remember why?

    billybucks 6 hours 44 min ago view
  • Sean Rodriguez's helmet looks like it's taking a dump

    jacos 6 hours 47 min ago view
  • Grimm not doing himself any favors lately re: making the playoff squad. Seems to have lost the feel for his curveball.

    billybucks 6 hours 52 min ago view
  • j.grimm is literally worse than hitler.

    felix pena, your turn.

    crunch 6 hours 54 min ago view
  • it's been a while since joe's over-managed a game...it's gotta feel good for him to be back in the saddle making people's scorecards look like their pens blew up.

    crunch 7 hours 40 min ago view
  • Fuck a bench spot on the playoff roster, Coghlan is competing to bat cleanup.

    John Beasley 9 hours 56 min ago view
  • barely any...especially for an evening game. place looks 1/2 full at best to start the game.

    crunch 10 hours 18 min ago view
  • Listening on the radio. Are there any fans in the stands at all?

    Brick 10 hours 27 min ago view
  • "An MRI taken Monday on the right side of Jorge Soler showed no major damage."

    crunch 11 hours 28 min ago view
  • rare air though if he can keep it under 2. Sounds like Maddon already made up his mind though and Hendricks seems like the sort that would want to earn it. Guessing he gets a quick hook if he's still under 2 after 5 innings.

    Fwiw, he can give up 1 ER in 5 innings (or more) and still be under 2. If he gives up 2 ER, he would need throw 9 IP to keep it under 2. 1 ER in 4 IP would give him an ERA of exactly 2.

    In terms of WAR, it's still Scherzer by a lot (6.4), then Cueto (5.6), Lester (5.5), Kershaw (5.5), Roark (5.4), and then Hendricks (5.1)

    Rob G. 12 hours 42 min ago view
  • Boring lineup tonight in terms of guys trying to reach milestones -- no KB (40 HR), Addy (100 RBI) or JHey (can he keep it going?), and Lackey isn't really going for anything, plus the team has already reached 100 wins. I get the "rest" thing, although they will have 4 days off after Sunday, but....bleh.

    billybucks 13 hours 26 min ago view
  • Agree -- I think you want to keep him on a regular schedule.

    billybucks 13 hours 45 min ago view
  • Ramos torn ACL

    jacos 14 hours 13 min ago view