Your 2010 Cubs: What To Expect
Hello, everyone! I'm Lizzy: Native Virginian, devoted Cubs fan, and author of a blog called The Fair Base Ballist. I was supposed to make a guest post here when Rob G. was on vacation, but technical difficulties prevented my doing so. I spent a good chunk of time hammering out individual player projections for 2010, and Rob has been kind enough to let me go ahead and post them. I hope you'll enjoy, and please contribute your own ideas to mine (especially for the mystery bench player who is likely to be announced 5 minutes after I publish this. I have omitted the 4 candidates for brevity's sake.)
Without further fanfare, your 2010 Chicago Cubs previews. They are all 100% serious.
Big Z is going into the 2010 season with an improved physique and
attitude. I say he tallies 4 homers before the All Star break and
starts to take up knitting.
Will hit a home run this season... possibly his first game back.
14-7, 3.69 ERA, 1.28 WHIP, 19 QS, 190 K, 206.2 IP, 24 QP (Quality
Pranks,) 13 NSQP (Not-So Quality Pranks.)
Will pick a road alias based on a Will Ferrell character and think
he's soo-ooo clever for it.
The slack jawed southpaw will sneak undetected into Wrigley several
times in the middle of the night to catch lightning bugs.
I'm not going to name any names, but certain Cubs beat reporters are
already looking forward to writing pieces on Carlos' hitting under
the headline “Silva Slugger.”
The Shark will fall in love with a charming south-side shopkeeper who
knows nothing about baseball. This will inadvertently put his career
on the right track. Ah, the power of love!
Write this down: On August 17th
Randy Wells will eat some bad pasta primavera at a sketchy San Diego
bistro (he will have heard that the chef there was reputable, a sad
bit of misinformation.) Violently ill on August 18th,
Randy will be unable to make his scheduled start. Sean Marshall,
unsurprisingly, is the last minute replacement. He will take a
no-hitter into the 8th
inning. With 2 outs, he will lose the bid on a blasted infield single
to stupid Will Venable. He'll still end up with a 2-hit shutout.
Here's your daily dose of optimism, courtesy of Dr. Liz: Not only
will Marmol hold down the closer position for the entire 2010 season,
he will be the second best
in our division and we'll all be angry in July when he isn't selected
as an All Star.
Will watch “Memento” and get all weirded out, because he's
John G., too!
That smile will take him far.
May we please call Justin “Pika-Cheeks” for obvious reasons?
Y'know, I think, y'know, that's Geo's gonna have a much better,
y'know, year this year. Because, y'know, he lost all that, y'know,
weight, and just seems really motivated, y'know?
At one point in '09, video footage surfaced of Koyie standing atop
Wrigley's scoreboard and tossing off frisbees. Remember that? Well,
stay tuned, 'cause this year Koyie's gonna try the same thing with
Will continue to make striking out look good.
Font and Z will go on being special buddies.
Would rather not make a prediction as it might turn out to be wrong.
Things will get awkward between The Riot and several of his teammates
as they catch him interviewing himself in the bathroom mirror
I can't say what I'm thinking or I'll jinx it.
In the time that Soriano spends on the DL this season, he will learn
to play the glass harmonica and release his own self-titled album.
All profits will go toward the preservation of endangered sea
Will smile, and make merry, and win over the masses whether he
performs well or not. Because Marlon has won me
over already, I am thoroughly convinced he's gonna be awesome.
Kosuke will hold a press conference in mid-May and divulge that his
young son suffers from an extremely rare disease which causes his
face to resemble that of a cute animated bear.
I will doodle his name all over everything for as long as he is
donning Cubby blue.
With any luck, Mr. Colvin will prove that his spring performance has
not been a fluke, and none of us will feel too bad when Soriano
inevitably pulls, strains, sprains, and/or fractures various parts of
Although he was raised in the Dominican Republic, you may not know
that Starlin was actually born
on the “Lost” island... under a rainbow... on Christmas. He is
endowed with a bat of silver, a glove of gold, the mind of a wizard,
and the heart of a Newfoundland puppy. He will descend upon Chicago
like an enormous trophy-shaped cloud on a scorching summer day. He
will win you over with a flash of his bat, leather, and boyish smile.
Within 2 weeks of his debut, Baseball Tonight will quit selecting the
day's top Web Gems (what's the point when all 10 belong to the same
player?) Over the second half, Starlin will become the owner of a
70-game hit streak and a .464 batting average. A few journalists will
question the naturalness of these feats, but Starlin will click his
heels together 3 times and they'll all vanish into thin air. If,
after all this, you are one of Starlin's few remaining doubters, he
will fly to your home on the back of a magical rocking-horse and
sprinkle you with an enchanted mixture of star dust and goat ash
while you're sleeping.
By 2020, he shall have a World Series ring for each finger, 10 MVP
awards, and a lovely alcove reserved for him in the Hall of Fame. He
will play every year at the league minimum salary, continually
rejecting colossal pay-days, because he just wants to play for the
love of the game. When Starlin's career finally concludes, his jersey
number will be universally retired (Not just from baseball, but from
Awesome stuff, Phil.
listening on ESPN 1000, caller says Bill Welke will be the home plate ump today. Supposedly his reputation is for having an even bigger strike zone than last night's Phil Cuzzi. Some of the issues with bad umpiring come from an inconsistent strike zone. Hoping at least for consistency. Last night's called strike on David Ross was outright embarrassing for Cuzzi.
That might work out in favor of Kyle Hendricks, who benefits much from a large strike zone.
it's kind of mesmerizing to watch
should Theo add some Ted Abernathy videos for minor league pitching coordinator's use?
sadly, Ted passed away in 2004 from complications of Alzheimers. I always loved the Cub bullpen trio of Phil Regan, Ted Abernathy and Hank Aguirre. As a kid, I even worked on both Phil Regan (very quirky delivery) and Ted Abernathy (extreme submarine) imitations when throwing a rubber ball against a wall. It wasn't a good imitation unless I could scrape my knuckles off the ground. I'll always have a soft spot in my heart for submariners.
HAGSAG: Chris Pieters was sent to instructs to develop his hitting, bunting, and outfield play (he is already a decent first-baseman).
Pieters is tall and rangy , a "long-strider" in the same mold as Trey Martin and Rashad Crawford. He is a very patient hitter (unusual for a hitter with his lack of experience) and has an outstanding (almost uncanny) eye at the plate, and he is a fast runner with unusually good baserunning instincts, and he is a good basestealer, too.
I doubt we will see Pedro in any more "high leverage" situations this series. With Hendricks and the pen today, we need Bryant-Rizzo-Castro to get going ASAP.
One funny thing to see before the game was the two submariner pitchers (David Berg and Corbin Hoffner) playing catch with each other. Both pitchers throw "submarine" even when they play catch, and it's kind of mesmerizing to watch, even for the other players.
CUBSTER: One of the points of emphasis at "basic" Instructs this year was teaching the position players the art of baserunning and base-stealing, like getting a good primary and seconday lead, reading the pitcher, cutting bases sharply, and different ways to slide to maximize the baserunner's chance to arrive safely.
Brooksbaseball.net has some interesting stats/graphs on pitch and strike zones and you can dial up individual games/pitchers. I'd love to see some comments from readers who can interpret this better than I can. I thought the Ump was really inconsistent with a very wide zone. Does this info seem to match up with my eyeball perception? Also, looking at the graphs, Lackey was not throwing as many pitches below the K-zone (certainly more above) while Lester was clearly getting his pitches down and not many above.
As I was fearing in my post yesterday, Maddon keeps trotting Strop out against the Redbirds and he constantly fails. I understand the psychology behind this, but in a series where there is a finite lock on who moves on, why does he keep riding the wrong horse?
AZ Phil: Agree, this must have been a really fun game to watch. There was a lot of base stealing going on. Are the pitchers not holding runners or is the catching still a work in progress?
Cuzzi has long been known as having the biggest strike zone among all umpires.
AZ Phil, give me a scouting report on Chris Pieters since he has become a 1B/OF.
I think it's probably hard to adjust to an ump's zone mid-game, as least for hitters. Pitchers can locate to an ump's zone, but hitters have minimal time to react.
But, whatever. Umps are going to miss calls. Let's beat up on the non-Lackey starters.
Watched a little of Mets-Dodgers.
Jason deGrom -- oh, my.
Cubs 3-4-5 hitters are 0-21 so far in the post-season.
Let's change that in a big effin' way tomorrow, boys.
Considering how players reacted it seemed pretty accurate high and wide (to righties), but not so accurate low and in. I thought the strike zone by the ump was awful, but it was consistent and the Cubs never adjusted.
Rizzo and Bryant need to have good at bats. They are really looking outclassed in these two games.