TCR Friday Notes
- Chone Figgins loves his Orange County Angels.
"...when you find a home, you want to stay here. I love what this
organization is all about -- winning, playing hard. I love being here."
- The Peoria Chiefs dominated the Midwest League this season to the tune of 81-57, then proceeded to get swept out of the best of 3 playoff series by the Cedar Rapid Kernels (Angels). It's important to have an organizational philosophy that runs through the entire system.
In Game 1, Jovan Rosa hit a game-tying two run home run in the 9th, only to see Peoria lose 6-4 in 10 innings.
In Game 2, the Chiefs led 8-7 heading into the 9th and turned to bonus baby, Chris Huseby. And in spectacular Cubbery fashion, he walked two to lead-off the inning, then got the next two outs, then a wild pitch, another walk to load them up, another walk to tie up the game and a hit-by-pitch to finish off the season. Final line for Huseby on the night: 0.2 IP, 0 H, 2 ER, 4 BB, 1 K, 1 HBP, 1 WP.
- As for Tennessee, they played Game 1 last night against Huntsville (Brewers) and were up 2-1 in the 8th when Marcos Mateo served up a 3-run shot to get saddled with the loss. Tyler Colvin hit one out for the Cubs earlier. Casey Coleman takes the mound tonight in Game 2 of the best-of-5 series.
- Gordon Wittenmyer continues his assault on the coveted, "Worst Beat Writer in Sports." Today he blames Bud Selig for the Cubs missing the playoffs and explains how the Colorado Rockies have benefited from interleague play and how if they didn't enjoy that 11-4 record in interleague games, they would still be in first place in the wild card standings. Wait. Check's article. Yup, that's exactly what he demonstrated.
Consider the current NL wild-card standings (before Florida’s late game Thursday night):
Colorado 81-60 —
San Francisco 76-64 4.5
Florida 74-65 6
Cubs 71-67 8.5
Now look what happens when only National League games are included:
Colorado 70-56 —
San Francisco 67-58 2.5
Florida 64-57 3.5
Cubs 65-58 3.5
- Cubs vs. Reds at Wrigley today. Justin "Shutout" Lehr vs. Rich "Farewell Cubs Tour" Harden. I just hope beyond hope that Bobby Scales gets to start another game.
Personally, I think the game could have had a very different look had the Pirates held onto the ball and tagged Fowler out on the steal in the first. Cole was clearly frazzled, but if they took that runner off the base, it could have relaxed him a lot.
Football games are played once a week. There are 16 games a year. I'm not even remotely following at all how you can compare the two leagues and playoff systems. It is physically impossible to play a home and away series. The idea of not having any road games in baseball playoffs is certainly a head scratcher.
How is not having the first and last game at home a benefit for the division winners and team with the best record? How is it not an incentive to win the division when a WC team has to blow their top pitcher?
Call me lost.
Two 97+ win teams in a do-or-die, great bullpens, overpowering starters, plenty of pop--hard to believe that game wouldn't be tense. A 4-0 lead is not a blowout, especially in that situation and with the Cubs' young bullpen. Not only would a defensive play here or there make a difference, but you get the win there also on the home plate umps strike zone (generous strike calls for Arrieta, including a couple Ks), and on Schwarber sitting on the right pitch at the right time.
I just noticed the Dodger's payroll today. It is just absurd. $300,000,000+!!
Here is where just some of their money is for 2015:
Carl Crawford $20MM
Brandon McCarthy $17MM
Bronson Arroyo $3.5MM
Darwin B $2.2MM
Dan Haren $10MM
Matt Kemp $18MM
Brian Wilson $10MM
Ryan Webb $2.2MM
Dee Gordon $2.5MM
So I think tomorrow will be the most important test of how far we can go. We can win it all with two pitchers since Arietta has shown he can carry over his success to the post season. If Lester can be dominant also then I think we can go far no matter how Hendricks or Hammel do.
And in terms of pitching just went through to see how we could maximize Lester and Arietta and came up with this (Lester would be going on 4 days rest three times and Arietta twice):
i still can't believe that crawford contract (7/142). all that loot and years for a LF'r who's entire hitting game revolves around his legs and line-drive power. those triples that raised his value are deceptive as hell to his true power, but it helped him get paid.
there's also pause about a guy who's ob% is almost totally driven by hits rather than walks. BOS got lucky unloading that crap deal.
I think the Cubs take Berry and Soler off playoff roster and add Hammel & Ramirez. Believe Maddon will find Denorfia & Jackson defense too hard to lose.
O & B: I like the one-game Wild Card heart attack game, but I'd actually like to see a best two-out-of-three LDS played in the home parks of the two division winners with the best records, and then the LCS as a best two-out-of-three in the home park of the division winner left standing with the best record, and then let's get to the World Series already.
I...don't know. If chanting would help the Cubs beat the Cardinals in the next series or ultimately the World Series I think I'd be ok with it lol. I'm not supportive of saying insulting things to opposing fans or throwing things but loud noise and chanting seems appropriate to me.
I also grew up in France though and that kind of thing is par for the course at soccer and rugby matches and I love it. I find crowds too passive here.
Enjoyable read on David Ross.
Er, they won the first one. My bad. Carry on.
With last night's win in Pittsburgh, the Cubs have tied the Pirates with 98 wins, and are only 2-1/2 games behind the Cardinals. No reason why the Cubs can't finish the post-season with the best winning percentage in baseball (regular season & post-season combined).
BOB: I doubt very much that Matt Szczur will be on the Cubs LDS roster.
If he wasn't on the Wild Card roster (when the Cubs went with 15 position players), he won't be on the LDS roster (when the Cubs will go with 13 or 14 position players).
As it is, at least one of the three RH hitting outfielders who were on the Cubs WC roster (Denorfia, Jackson, and Soler) could get bumped off the LDS roster (probably Soler).
I want my baseball team to win by playing better baseball. I don't want umps, fields, or fans to have anything to do with it.
Just with the chanting thing it worked to rattle Cueto last year where he dropped a ball and gave up a HR next pitch so you can't really hate on the fans for trying it again in this important of a game.