Pirates @ Cubs: Williams vs Montgomery (Game 130)

PIT (63-68): RHP Trevor Williams (5-6, 4.40) 
CHC (69-60): LHP Mike Montgomery (4-6, 3.43)
First pitch: 7:05pmCST

Montgomery kept the Reds off the board for 6 innings on Wednesday for the win. Don't look now, but he's kicking a 1.89 ERA in August. Overall, the Pirates are 3-18 (.167) against him. Herrera is 2-2.

Williams pitched 8 scoreless against the Dodgers his last time out but ended up with a no-decision. He's 1-1 with a 5.27 in four games against the Cubs this season. For their careers, these Cubs are 13-4 (.271). Bryant is 2-4.

Tomorrow is Kuhl (6-9) against Arrieta (13-8) at the same time.

Go Cubs!


16 ERRORS Bryant Man, sadly, Kris Bryant is next to last in Defensive Metrics (16/17 E-5) according to ESPN stats. A .944 FP. Sorry, but he has just got to be better than that. I don't know what the fuck happened? You can't have a ball go under your glove when your side just hits into a TP, and while he makes some good plays due to his length - he sure is having some problems. Maybe he is just constantly in pain? Or, maybe he has lapses of concentration?

Since it's national crap on KB day, may as well add this to the discussion http://www.bleachernation.com/2017/08/28/is-t... It's kinda nice to know Cubs still managed to win the WS even with their best player having this issue.

those KB "not clutch" articles are flowing out of the woodwork lately. they're the new "heyward has tweaked his swing" of cubs-based journalism.

Certainly seems that any time he makes an error recently, it leads to 5+ run innings (Yesterday, both Lester 9/10 run in an inning disasters, etc)

Cubs could always move KB to LF, we kind of thought that might be the plan all along back when he was still in the minors. For next year, Schwarber gets traded for a pitcher, KB in the outfield, Baez at 3B and Happ at 2B? Could work.

That would be a defensive upgrade at 3B and LF, but you lose defense at 2B, depth and flexibility, and offensive upside. Assuming Schwarber can't bring back much in a trade, I think those moves would probably work out to be a net loss.

Does Happ have the skill set to make a shift to third?

This business about Bryant having problems at the plate and at third: crazy talk.

Possibly a dumb question, but which defensive metrics are you looking at?

He has 0 DRS which is 11th among 3rd basemen, a -2.4 UZR/150 which is 12th among 3rd basemen and -4 dWAR which is 14th among 3rd basemen. None of those are great and they're worse than last year but still a lot better than 2nd from last.

"Cubs general manager Jed Hoyer said Monday that whether Jon Lester (shoulder, lat) makes a rehab start depends largely on how he feels Tuesday following Monday's simulated game." who the hell is this jed hoyer dude? does theo know about this guy pretending he's part of the front office?

gary pressy (cubs organist) got to sing the 7th again. he's been with the cubs since 87 and they let him sing last year. it's nice to see him back doing the 7th again this year. he's been a part of the park for such a long time and though some may not know the name, they've been entertained by him. also, lots of great shots on the outro of the organ installed at wrigley. very neat. also also, this is grumpy ass skip ellison's last night directing cubs baseball. he did a good job.

they're having a low-volume audio feed of skip directing in the top of 8th. len and jd are letting people hear how he does his job and how it effects what we see without doing much commentary. along with a cubs lead, it's been a nice game.

cubs win! MIL + STL didn't play tonight. 2.5 game lead over MIL.

Nice, drama-free win. Looks like Monty doesn't have much of an interest in returning to the bullpen this year, at least in the regular season -- pitching a hell of a lot better than Q and his band of three-run, first inning homers.

i wouldn't be surprised to see a 6-man rotation working through september to see an extended look at monty and keep the rotation a touch more rested going into the playoffs (assuming playoffs). montgomery's last 3 long outings (2 starts, 1 long relief replacing lester) are worth exploring for an end-rotation option going forward and he's pitching with enough quality to be a legit rotation member right now.

Nice of the Pirates to give the Cubs 3 runs in the 7th. Also-- another strong start from Monty -- making a case to be a starter next year. Or, perhaps this year if they go 6-man after rosters expand

Thereis no swingman this year - no more Trevor Cahill, or "Woody" in the pen. So my guess is he stays in this current roll.

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  • crunch 1 min 18 sec ago (view)

    Yeah, I've made myself familiar with a lot of the changes, but AZP's posts have both added more information and cleared up stuff I didn't fully grasp.  I appreciate the hell out of it.  Thanks Phil, thanks TCR.


  • bradsbeard 1 hour 43 min ago (view)

    Looks like Savant has his breaking pitch classified as a curve while Fangraphs calls it a slider. Suppose by ST he could have made everything over in the pitching lab, so who knows!


  • Arizona Phil 2 hours 14 sec ago (view)

    Again, none of these rules (including the one that requires a pitcher to face a minimum of three batters or else record the final out of the inning) have been officially approved.  

    I think one possible caveat that might be added to the three-batter minimum rule would be that the pitcher can be replaced prior to facing three batters or recording the final out of the inning if the other team puts up a pinch-hitter. 


  • Arizona Phil 2 hours 4 min ago (view)

    Ptchers would also be treated differently under the new rules as far as the Injured list and Optional Assignment to the minors is concerned, with pitchers having to spend at least 15 days (up from 10 days) on the Injured List before being eligible to be reinstated and at least 15 days (up from 10 days) on Optional Assignment before being eligible to be recalled (inless the pitcher is being recalled to replace a pitcher on the 26-man roster who has been placed on an MLB inactive list).  


  • Arizona Phil 2 hours 4 min ago (view)

    SONICWIND: As the rule is proposed, prior to the start of each MLB regular season a club must designate all players on its Opening Day 26-man roster as either a "pitcher" or a "position player." A maximum of 13 can be designated as pitchers (14 pitchers max when rosters expand from 26 to 28 beginning on 9/1). 

    For players who come up during the season, the club must designate the player as either a pitcher or a position player when the player is placed on the MLB active list roster. 


  • Arizona Phil 2 hours 17 min ago (view)

    BRADSBEARD: Fangraphs shows the CT as his primary pitch in 2018 with the SL & FB (and an occasional CH) as his secondary pitches, with no CV at all. I guess I'll find out for sure in Spring Training. 


  • Sonicwind75 3 hours 33 min ago (view)

    AZ Phil, thank you as always for the detailed information.  How is the "cannot be a pitcher" part of the rule to be enforced?  With a few two way players and the increasing amount of mop up innings being handled by position players it seems like there could be a gray area there.  What is preventing a team from stashing an athletic relief pitcher as a "5th outfielder" that could be a pinch runner and play a passable OF when needed but could also provide them with extra relief pitcher.  Anytime I hear of a new rule I always think of how Bill Billichek would circumvent it t


  • bradsbeard 3 hours 34 min ago (view)

    AZ Phil, looking around Baseball Savant, it looks like Winkler now primarily throws a low 90s cutter, a 4-seamer that he throws a little harder (but is less effective), a curve and a sinker. The slider and change haven't been a major part of his repertoir the last two years. The cutter has been really effective the last two years but it looks like he lost command/effectiveness of his 4-seemer and curve last year For whatever reason  


  • bradsbeard 6 hours 53 min ago (view)

    They just signed this guy:



  • Hagsag 8 hours 10 min ago (view)

    There seems to be a lot of player movement so far. Too bad the Cubs aren't involved.


  • Arizona Phil 1 day 8 min ago (view)

    Beginning in 2019, a club must wait a minimum of seven days before it can place a player who was claimed off Outtright Assignment Waivers during the off-season back onto waivers, so because he was claimed off waivers on Wednesday 11/27, yesterday (Wednesday 12/4) was the first day the Cubs could place LHRP C. D. Pelham back onto Outright Assignment Waivers, and so tomorrow (Friday 12/6) is the first day the Cubs can send Pelham outright to the minors (if he was placed back onto waivers yesterday).


  • Arizona Phil 1 day 20 hours ago (view)

    A Competitive Balance draft slot can be traded only during a period of time starting on December 2nd and extending up until two hours prior to the MLB First-Year Player Draft (MLB Rule 4 Draft), so don't be surpised if these draft picks are traded during the off-season.

    Keep in mind that the slot cannot be traded for cash unless it is a financial adjustment made to offset the salary of one or more of the players involved in the trade.


  • Arizona Phil 1 day 20 hours ago (view)

    The active list roster limit changes scheduled to go in effect in 2020 have not yet been officially approved. Same goes for the three-batter minimum (or else record the third out in the inning) for relief pitchers. 


  • Arizona Phil 1 day 21 hours ago (view)

    And then the active list roster limit will expand from 26 to 28 on September 1st (max 14 pitchers in September). 


  • Arizona Phil 1 day 21 hours ago (view)

    The "26th man" who was added for doubleheaders will now be the "27th man" and he can be a pitcher. 


  • crunch 2 days 2 hours ago (view)

    ATL signs cole hamels 1/18m...a'ite then.

    also, z.wheeler 5/100+ to the phillies.