We Have a Winner
In a close vote to decide the Official1 TCR Nickname for our Middle Infielders, we can now announce that with 100% of the 66 votes counted, the winner is....
The Scrap Pack.
The Scrap Pack beat The Tiger Cubs2 for the honor, and congratulations to all the other worthy suggestions as well.
Among the many virtues of The Scrap Pack are:
It rhymes ok, fine, it doesn't. Me flunk 2nd grad Inglish.
- Ok, it has "internal rhyme." I never got that far in English.
- It's short
- It has assonance
- It has a sharp, staccato sort of meter to it
- It alludes to a bunch of iconic womanizing singing drunkards with ties to the Las Vegas Mafia from the 1960s, who later went on to star in all-time classic movies like The Cannonball Run II.
- It is expandable: if necessary it could incorporate Reed Johnson, Aaron Miles and others.
- Its origin is shrouded in TCR mystery and lore. CT_Steve mentioned that he recalled seering someone use the nickname in Parachat, but we don't know who.
And most importantly....
- If they wind up stinking up the field, we can always claim that the "S" is silent.
1 "Official" in the sense that part of my contract to begin writing for Ruz, years ago, included several legal prerogatives, including but not limited to the right to print Letters of Marque and to be keeper of The Official Seal of TCR. I'm inferring from those prerogatives that I also have the right to declare things "official."
2 Yes, I just made an animal abuse pun. I'm sorry.
I don't think his issue(s) will have anything to do with it. He hasn't hit since he's been back. Coghlan has the hot hand.
I'm not a denier but definitely a skeptic on Strop and Grimm, who struggle with fastball control. Strop doesn't go near the ninth inning, and note how Grimm couldn't close the deal even with a 5-run lead. So Felix Pena comes in and gets the 3-pitch game-ending strikeout like it was nothing.
And how about Almora missing that very catchable ball? That was unexpected after all the hype about his glove.
When Trea Turner misses balls like that--which he does--I draw conclusions from it. It seems to be the one chink in his armor. But I'll give Almora another chance.
Assuming Soler is good to go, I think it comes down to 3 of the following 4: Coghlan, TLS, Sczcur, Almora. Of the 4, TLS seems to be the hardest to justify, particularly given his behavioral issues.
I'm wondering if both Coghlan and LaStella make it. With Javy being able to play all the infield spots and Joe maybe wanting late-inning D when Soler plays (assuming he plays), hence either Szczur or Almora, I think LaStella might be the odd guy out.
Hendricks needs the win, anyway, plus a couple more.
My hunch is that Hendricks wins the Cy Young . . . for Lester. That is, without Hendricks tipping the scale toward the Cubs, Scherzer tops Lester.
Old Cub fans remember when Ken Hubbs died at 22 in the crash of a small plane he was piloting in a storm in Utah in 1964. But Hubbs was not an elite power pitcher like Score and Fernandez. Score lived a long time after the accident but it was (effectively) career-ending.
HAGSAG: Since I've only seen them throw in one game and in one "live" BP session, all I can do is provide initial first impressions.
Brailyn Marquez is listed at 6'4 but is probably more like 6'5 or 6'6. I would describe him as a younger version of Bryan Hudson, throwing a ton of ground balls but not getting a lot of swings & misses (yet). Because of his size he could eventually grow into more velocity, but right now he's mostly a pitch-to-contact guy. He generally throws strikes.
Phil, do Marquez and Ocampo look like prospects?
It helps when your defense has declared war against the H in WHIP.
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.
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.
101 wins...most since 1910 (104).
neat. ...or sad. pick one. pick both. 'murica.
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?
Sean Rodriguez's helmet looks like it's taking a dump
Grimm not doing himself any favors lately re: making the playoff squad. Seems to have lost the feel for his curveball.
j.grimm is literally worse than hitler.
felix pena, your turn.