Cubs make a deal in the 4th dimension. Welcome back Dontrelle Willis.
In 2002 the Cubs traded Dontrelle Willis, Julian Tavarez and two minor leaguers for Antonio Alfonseca and Matt Clement.
11 years later, they get Willis back.
What does it mean in the cosmic scheme?
The big picture?
The Cubs got Alfonseca and Clement for Tavarez!
And that is crafty, my friend.
A deal made in the 4th dimension.
Way back when, I took a class called "3-D Design" right at the time the art department bought some new video cameras.
The teacher was so excited he had us do a film - it was of me getting my pocket picked for some reason.
The next day we looked at it and the teacher goes, "You all realize we've just done an experiment in the 4th dimension."
"What you talkin' bout, Willis?" said the class.
He says, "This little act happened yesterday in the hallway."
"And yet today we're looking at it in a completely different time and space."
Totally aced that class, btw.
Those old drawings are from 2003.
The Matt Clement one from late in that amazing season, and the Alfonseca was a reaction to June 27th and 28th.
When the Cubs dropped 2 in a row at Comisky.
When Antonio gave up a homer in the bottom of the 9th to Jose Valentin, Cubs lose 3-4.
And the next day a 2-run homer to Aaron Rowand to tie the game in the 8th (Juan Cruz would be charged with the 6-7 loss).
I was just kidding about the class saying, "What you talkin' bout, Willis?"
That show wasn't even on yet.
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.
that game sounds fun as hell.
I was just wondering the same thing. I'd rather not see it at all. If it's inaccurate, it's a bad viewer experience. If it's accurate, it shows some shitty calling by the umpire.
TBS' K Zone seems to be more harsh than the others.
I wonder if MLB will ask the networks to stop using them. They just make the umps, and the game, look bad, and it only pisses off the fans.