Our Stud's Better Than Your Stud
A betting man would have to like the Omaha Storm Chasers to successfully defend their title in the American North Division of the Pacific Coast League this year. The stretch drive of the season may be reminiscent of Secretariat’s in the Belmont Stakes. But just who are those also-rans way up the track behind the young Royals? Why, besides the I-Cubs it’s the young Cardinals and young Brewers! I like the affiliations of not only my hometown team but also their divisional opponents.
Who cares, one might ask, how our prospects stack up against the Royals’? St. Louis and Milwaukee are more immediate battlefronts than Kansas City. So, any clogs in those pipelines?
Whereas the Cubs’ system is lacking in high-end pitching prospects, both the Cardinals and Brewers feature starting pitchers as their crème de la crème and both Shelby Miller (STL) and Wily Peralta (MIL) have had sour seasons thus far.
As pleased and relieved as the Cardinals must be about the emergence of Lance Lynn, who this time a year ago was toiling in Memphis while Chris Carpenter was still going strong in St. Louis, they might be a little chagrined about Miller’s struggles so far in the PCL. In 2011, he was named the organization’s Minor League Pitcher of the Year for the second straight season. Rick Ankiel was the last to accomplish that feat.
But he’s recently been given a no-shake edict, meaning he’s to throw whatever pitch he’s told, and the organization’s pitching coordinator was dispatched to work directly with Miller in hopes of improving on his stat line which includes warts like a 6.00 ERA, 82 hits in 66 IP and a .306 BAA.
In Nashville the touted Peralta has been similarly roughed up. He was originally signed by the Brewers as an outfielder in 2005 before being converted to pitcher. He had his Tommy John circumcision in 2007 so that’s out of the way. But he’s struggling at 2-8 with an ERA and other peripherals almost as stratospheric as Miller’s. Peralta’s built along the lines of Fartolo (typo intended) Colon at 6’2” and 240.
So while the prime prospects of two of their NL Central rivals are scuffling at Triple A the Cubs are rearranging the deck chairs in their lineup to make room for their own. They may be short on topflight arms but they appear to have at least one bat riding to the rescue. Looks like he may arrive any day now.
video of Maddon.
always nice that he actually tries to honestly answer questions. Does mention that he wanted to give Zastr? a chance in a meaningful spot rather than a mop-up role.
#Cubs Maddon: "I'm not going to make up an excuse for why I did what I did. It has nothing to do with lack of confidence" ... "It was the right thing to do today based on what I saw, what their lineup looked like and Rob Z.'s availability." #Cubs
Hammel not particularly understanding of getting pulled out...as he should. Be curious what Maddon had to say. All I can think of is is keeping arms fresh and maybe wanting to see if Zastr? is worth considering for the playoffs and how he'd do against the Dodgers.
Heyward, Russell, Baez, Bryant, Ross in particular...although Bryant's a bit hard to judge with all the positions.
Fowler and Rizzo in the top half of the NL for their positions as well (per fangraphs)...Zobrist right at the halfway cutoff for 2b in the NL.
I'm sure some luck is involved too, but the Cubs and Maddon knew what they were doing.
If all the starters have FIP > ERA, is that luck or good defense?
#Cubs plummet to 19-5 in August.
Fun with FIP
- J. Hammel 3.07 ERA/4.27 FIP (3.68 FIP last year)
- J. Arrieta 2.62 ERA/3.05 FIP (2.35 FIP last year)
- J. Lester 2.81 ERA/3.67 FIP (2.92 FIP last year)
- K. Hendricks 2.19 ERA/3.37 FIP (3.36 FIP last year)
- J. Lackey 3.41 ERA/3.72 FIP (3.57 FIP last year with Cards)
zastyryzryzryzny put in 3.2ip 1h 0bb 3k
he's great when his control is "on"...problem is it's rarely "on" consistently. he could vault up the cubs prospect list if he ever gets better with that aspect of his game.
JD's take was just trying to get in a lefty to better deal with mostly lefty Dodgers lineup.
My second thought was what you came up with. My first thought was he was trying to light a fire under Hammel.
Maybe he was trying to spare him another brutal road start? NY, Colorado...
joe got a pitcher up for hammel at nearly the 1st sign of trouble in the 3rd...pulled after 2.1
not injured and though it wasn't his day so far he wasn't looking like a pure disaster.
really short leash on him. zastryznzryzryny in.
Russell and Soler can attest that Urias has a pretty good curve/slider - two big strikeouts looking to get out of that jam in the first.
Classic Scully - great stuff.
Thank God we'll still have Hawk next season. (cricket cricket cricket)
Here's Scully's call on Bryant's 10th-inning homer:
"And it's a long fly ball, a mean fly ball, and a gone fly ball."
When the Cubs were the old, hundred-year Cubs, one bad hop did not undo their opponents.
If only he was clutcher. More clutcher.
cubs win...bryant with 7HR in his last 8 games.