Cubs @ Reds: Series Thread (Games 121-123)
The Cubs have matched their season high for *checks notes* games lost in a row, at eleven. Next, they get to face the second place Reds, who trail the Brewers by 8 games and are fighting for a Wild Card spot. See below for the matchups in this three-game series.
Game 121, Monday, August 16, 6:10 pm central
CHC: LHP Justin Steele (2-1, 2.95 ERA)
CIN: LHP Wade Miley (9-4, 3.00 ERA)
Steele gets his second start of the season and looks pretty secure in the rotation to the end of the season now that Arrieta has officially departed. He allowed three earned runs to the Brewers in five innings in his first start, striking out only one batter along the way.
Miley allowed five earned runs to Atlanta in five innings last time out. He did not earn a decision when he faced the Cubs on July 26, allowing three earned runs and five walks in 4.1 innings.
Game 122, Tuesday, August 17, 6:10 pm central
CHC: RHP Kyle Hendricks (13-5, 4.15 ERA)
CIN: RHP Vladimir Gutierrez (8-3, 3.95 ERA)
The Brewers absolutely wrecked Hendricks in his last start. They collected eleven hits and nine earned runs off the veteran righty in 4 innings and ended his undefeated streak. The Reds tagged him for five earned runs in 4.1 innings when they saw him near the end of July.
Gutierrez has won four straight going back to a July 27 victory against the Cubs.
Game 123, Wednesday, August 18, 11:35 pm central
CHC: TBD, probably RHP Keegan Thompson (3-2, 2.21 ERA) RHP Adrian Sampson (6-12, 5.71 ERA in 153 innings at the MLB level)
CIN: RHP Tyler Mahle (10-3, 3.58 ERA)
Thompson made one start for the Cubs back on May 4. He last appeared for the MLB club on 7/26 and has since gotten stretched out a bit in the minors. Out of the bullpene he's missed enough bats to succeed, but his command has been inconsistent.
AZ Phil noted below that Adrian Sampson is on schedule to start on Wednesday and would be the likely call-up. He's made 20 MLB starts in his career and 21 additional relief appearances, and he spent 2020 pitching in the KBO. He brings a low 90s fastball and a slider and changeup.
Mahle is coming off seven scoreless innings in Philadelphia. He pitched six scoreless against the premium Cubs experience back on July 28.
crunch 8 hours 23 min ago (view)
* except for playing 1st base
crunch 2 days 4 hours ago (view)
a lot of people were all-in on it being a 2022 thing, but given how MLB has held the DH over the player's heads like it's some kind of extremely valuable chip worth more than the players seem to think it's worth...who knows...
Cubster 2 days 6 hours ago (view)
any estimates on the chances of the DH in the NL anytime soon?
crunch 2 days 6 hours ago (view)
k.schwarber is hella good at post-season baseball.
crunch 2 days 8 hours ago (view)
e.castillo and t.payne off the 40man in 100% totally expected moves.
both are/were catcher organizational depth.
crunch 2 days 9 hours ago (view)
for those keeping track of the heating-up Mets head of baseball operations search, theo has already ruled himself out.
mets want(ed) some heavy hitters (including b.beane and d.stearns), but none of them are on board...well, MIL took stearns off the board before he could chime in because he has a year left on his contract.
Arizona Phil 2 days 13 hours ago (view)
Something to keep in mind about clearing MLB 40-man roster slots for players eligible for selection in this year's Rule 5 Draft is that you can't non-tender players to create 40-man roster space for Rule 5 Draft eligibles. That's because players can only be non-tendered on 12/2, and the pre-Rule 5 Draft roster filing deadline is 11/19 (almost two weeks - PRIOR TO -the contract tender date). NOTE: Normally the roster filing deadline is 11/20, but it's moved up to 11/19 this year because 11/20 falls on a Saturday in 2021
Arizona Phil 2 days 14 hours ago (view)
BRADSBEARD: Just one game, some BP, infield practice, and baserunning drills. So not much to glean from that so far.
crunch 3 days 5 hours ago (view)
minor league baseball has to provide housing for minor leaguers starting 2022 (paid for by MLB parent clubs). this is HUGE news and will make it possible for guys to stick around longer without having to quit the game just to earn a basic living. for minor league players working in expensive housing markets this is a life saver.
activist players from the OAK and LAA minor league teams as well as minor league player labor advocacy organizations were a huge part of making this happen. good work.
bradsbeard 3 days 9 hours ago (view)
Did you have any occasion to observe Pedro Ramirez? Not sure if he got into any games or not (now that I think of it, you wrote up at least one game he played in).
Arizona Phil 3 days 14 hours ago (view)
azbobbop: Certainly LHSPs Drew Gray and Luke Little have emerged as legit significant high-end SP prospects. RHSP Luis Devers has probably displaced Koen Moreno as the top "pitchability" SP prospect in the lower levels of the Cubs system. Tyler Schlaffer (another "pitchability" guy) also had an impressive Instructs, although Devers is a better SP prospect because he has a solid three-pitch mix and knows how to use it, while Schlaffer has just the 92-94 FB & CV (although both are solid offerngs) and isn't as polished as Devers is.
Hagsag 3 days 20 hours ago (view)
This is the first time I have heard about the four month program in November.
azbobbop 4 days 3 hours ago (view)
Phil, now that instructional scare finished, which players impressed you the most and who are disappointments.
tim815 4 days 7 hours ago (view)
Cool. Should help his trade value if the bat plays.
Arizona Phil 4 days 9 hours ago (view)
TIM: Peter Matt looks very comfortable at 3B. He is a classic "four-corner" guy (1B-3B-LF-RF).