Cubs @ Mets: Hendricks vs. Syndergaard (Game 132)

CHC (70-61): RHP Kyle Hendricks (9-9, 3.20 ERA)
NYM (67-64): RHP Noah Syndergaard (9-6, 3.71 ERA)
First pitch 6:10pmCDT

The Cubs started the road series with a win over Marcus Stroman and continue with another tough match-up today. Hendricks takes the mound, fresh off a very good performance against the Giants that yielded him a win. He pitched seven scoreless, collecting seven strikeouts and allowing three hits along the way. The Mets most dangerous hitters have seen little of Mr. Tenure Track, but Todd Frazier is 3-12 with two doubles and two walks. The bullpen should be extremely well rested following an off day and an 8-inning start from Yu.

Noah Syndergaard has missed slightly fewer bats this year and has a higher ERA than usual, but most of his peripherals suggest he's been pretty near as dominant as in his past. He's still averaging 98 MPH on his fastball and getting groundballs in almost half of all balls in play. Current Cubs have been shockingly fine against him. Javy, who broke out of a slump in a big way last night, is 4-7 with two strikeouts off the fireballer. Bryant is 3-8, Heyward is 4-11, and Russell (also with a HR yesterday) is an adequate 2-6. No current Cubs has homered off the righty. Rizzo, 2-10 with four strikeouts off of Syndergaard, may just get another day to rest his back.

Comments

With the season over for both AZL Cubs #1 and AZL Cubs #2, the Cubs have supposedly assigned several of their AZL pitchers to throw "live" BP to Ben Zobrist. It doesn't appear to be happening in Mesa, however. 

Ben Zobrist must be reinstated from the Restricted List (and added back to the MLB 40-man roster) prior to midnight on 8/31 in order to be eligible to play in the post-season.  

For formality sake, they could do it after their game on the 31st and option somebody from the Iowa to Chicago shuttle. However would that person still be required to be "sent down" for 10 days even without a minor league season to hypothetically participate in?

ERICH081: As long as the Cubs wait until after the game on 8/31 (it's a day game) to reinstate Zobrist from the Restricted List, there does not need to be a corresponding move on the Cubs MLB Active List (25-man roster) because rosters expand from 25 to 40 on 9/1. But he must be reinstated prior to midnight on 8/31 in order to be eligible to play in the post-season, so he will very likely be reinstated from the Restricted List sometime after the game on 8/31 but prior to midnight and then he will be placed on the Cubs Active List prior to the game on 9/1.  

There is still the issue of who Ben Zobrist replaces on the Cubs MLB Reserve List (40-man roster) when he is reinstated (presumably after the game on Saturday). 

1. I have mentioned Justin Steele before and why the Cubs probably would prefer not to recall him from his Optional Assignment and place him on the MLB 60-day IL to make room for Zobrist on the 40. They can do it, but not only would it cost the Cubs an extra $80,000+ in salary (the difference between Steele's minor league split salary and the MLB minimum salary he would make while on the MLB 60-day IL plus the additional CBT tax and CBT surchage the Cubs would have to pay on the salary because they are over the CBT threshold), but Steele would also accrue 29 days of MLB Service Time while on the 60- day IL, and he could not be outrighted to the minors during the off-season or Spring Training if he were to sustain a major injury (which he could be if he does not accrue any MLB Service Time in 2019).      

2. Daniel Descalso could be transferred to the 60-day IL. Because time spent on the 10-day IL counts toward the 60 days a player must spend on the 60-day IL before he can be reinstated, Descalso would be eligible to be reinstated on 9/22 and would be eligible to play in the post-season. He also could continue his Minor League Rehab Assignment with AAA Iowa while the I-Cubs are playing in the PCL playoffs after Labor Day (although it might seem hard to believe, there is no restriction on an MLB player doing an Article XIX-C Minor League Rehab Assignment with a minor league team participating in a league playoff). If this happens, the Cubs would just be delaying their 40-man roster decision unitl 9/22, but by then there will be only seven days left in the MLB regular season and it wouldn't cost as much in terms of salary and MLB Service Time to recall Justin Steele from his Optional Assignment and place him on the MLB 60-day IL (Steele is shut-down with a strained oblique). Or maybe somebody else will get hurt in the meantime and will be placed onto or transferred to the 60-day IL by 9/22. 

3. Somebody could get Designated for Assignment. That could be Descalso, too. The Cubs could offer to either transfer him to the 60-day IL, give him his release, or outright him to the minors. It would be his choice. If he takes his release, the Cubs would be on the hook for what remains of his contract (offset by the pro-rated MLB minimum salary if he signs a major league contract with another club after being released). If he accepts the Outright Assignment, he gets an NRI to Spring Training and has a chance to make the Cubs Opening Day roster next season or else play at AAA Iowa. If he goes on the 60-day IL, he remains inactive possibly beyond 9/22, but he would remain with the club and be eligible to play in the 2019 post-season if activated from the IL. 

There are several other candidates on the 40 besides Descalso who could get a DFA, including a post-2019 free-agent like Derek Holland. Also a minor leaguer presently on the 40 who will be out of minor league options in 2020 (Alec Mills, Randy Rosario, Duane Underwood Jr, and Mark Zagunis) and thus will have no value as a "Des Moines - Chicago shuttle" guy in 2020 could get dropped to make room on the 40 for Zobrist on 8/31.

Something to keep in mind about Cole Hamels being on the Paternity Leave List is that he must be reinstated after three days (max), so Hamels must be reinstated on Friday even though he isn't scheduled to start until Saturday, and then somebody who is presently on the 25-man roster will have to be placed on the Injured List or optioned to the minors or DFA'd when Hamels is reinstated, and if a player presently on the 25 is optioned to the minors, he must remain on Optional Assignment to the minors for at least ten days unless he is recalled to replace a player who is placed on an MLB inactive list (IL, Paternity, Bereavement, etc).  

It used to be that a player could be recalled after spending less than ten days on Optional Assignment if his minor league team's season had ended (so for example James Norwood could be optioned to AA Tennessee -- which unlike Iowa will not be in the playoffs -- on Friday and then recalled on Tuesday after Tennessee's last game on Monday), but that is no longer the case. If Norwood (for example) is optioned back to the minors when Hamels is renistated from the Paternity Leave List on Friday, he cannot be recalled for at least ten days (until Monday 9/9) unless he is recalled to replace a player who is placed on an MLB inactive list. That's why you will sometimes see a player placed on the Injured List in September. 

heyward / cast / bryant / baez / schwarb / russell / happ(1st) / caratini / hendricks

rizzo expected to miss tomorrow's game, too.

tarp on the field at gametime, delayed start...supposedly it's going to be a very short delay.

cast takes a HBP to the hand.

NEAT.  COOL.  AWESOME.

he's staying in the game, but ow.

this game is good.  the rain can stop now, plz...need to finish this one.

hendricks comes to the plate before throwing a pitch...thor's thrown 29 for 6 runs and 1 out.

My supersticiousness must be flaring up, becaus an early lead like this against a starter like Syndergaard in an important game is giving me the willies.

2nd inning good, too.

schwarb with career high homer #31.

the rain is obviously playing a role in this bad pitching, but this is a stomping by cubs bats.

3rd inning good, too.

cast with a HR...think his hand might be fine.

thor is still pitching for some reason.

hendricks pulled with 2 on and 4 in with 2 outs in the 5th.

he had a 9 run lead not too long ago.  cubs up by 5.  phelps in to clean up the last out.

harsh no-decision for hendricks.

...and phelps gives up a run.  neat.  4 run lead.

2019 Cubs: nothing comes easy. Except road losses. Those come easy and quite frequently 

Game similar to the Q start about a month ago where he got pulled in the fifth inning before a big lead was completely squandered. He’s pitched pretty well since then. 

of course b.brach comes in and pitches 1ip 0h 0bb 2k vs the cubs in quick order.

kimbrel game #19 and i'm very much over his drama innings.  damn, yo.

bit of fun...the story behind the keith comstock "baseball to the crotch" baseball card...

https://www.espn.com/mlb/story/_/id/27425987/guy-b...

Recent comments

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  • JustSayin' 13 hours 20 min ago (view)

     I hear you but welcome to the world of Theo.  The team is always a step or two away from the World Series in his mind, whether that is true or not.  Therefore, the thing to do on the margin is to trade top prospects or younger guys on the roster for that missing puzzle piece, not build for the future.  I had a front-row seat for this as a Red Sox fan.  If Pedro Martinez doesn't insist the Red Sox sign David Ortiz for table scraps and Chris Bryant isn't the no-brainer second pick in the draft, we'd all be wondering what happened to that Theo guy who was in the Red S

     

  • Cubster 14 hours 18 min ago (view)

    Shogo Akiyama is a lefty bat, career BA at.301 w/ Seibu Lions.  Recent OBPs: .419, .385, .398, .403 and .392. HR 20-15 in last 3 seasons Stolen bases, 12 in 2019, 18 in best season (2016). Defense supposedly plus-plus, 7-10 assists (10 in 2016). Clearly a leadoff hitter.

     

  • crunch 1 day 7 hours ago (view)

    christian yelich committed internet homicide on yu darvish...

    https://twitter.com/ChristianYelich/status/1195462...

     

  • Charlie 1 day 11 hours ago (view)

    Little in the offseason could make me happier than the Cubs finding ways to retain the good MLB players who came up with them while remaining competitive. This Javy extension talk makes me much happier as a fan than the Bryant and Contreras trade talk.

     

  • crunch 1 day 11 hours ago (view)

    "Javy Baez. The two-time All-Star shortstop and 2018 MVP runner-up already has begun negotiations on a potential long-term extension with the Cubs, according to sources."

    also, some talk of being linked to shogo akiyama (CF, Japan, 32yo in April)

    https://chicago.suntimes.com/cubs/2019/11/15/20966...

     

  • crunch 2 days 7 hours ago (view)

    j.odorizzi accepted his qualifying offer (17.8m) from MIN...so did j.abreu (CWS)....everyone else is gonna play the FA market.

    w.smith (SF) immediately signed with the braves for 3/39 (13m team option/1m buyout on the backend).  braves lose a 2nd round pick...which they'll probably get back when someone signs j.donaldson.

     

  • crunch 3 days 7 hours ago (view)

    nice.

    it's not like i think he's something special, but if he had 5mph more on his stuff he'd probably be a top prospect in the system combined with his command/control.  he's got highly repeatable junk and he's still young enough there might be a little more velocity to discover.

     

  • Arizona Phil 3 days 11 hours ago (view)

    CRUNCH: As long as Carrera is placed on the AAA Iowa reserve list on 11/20 he should be safe from selection, and I would say he is in fact close to a lock to be placed on the Iowa roster.

    Presuming he is on the Iowa reserve list going into the Rule 5 Draft, I doubt very much that he would get selected in the Major League Phase because he hasn't pitched above Lo-A. 

     

  • crunch 3 days 11 hours ago (view)

    nice info...

    i'm low-key keeping an eye on faustino carrera if he's not protected...which he may not be protected.

    he throws junk, but he throws it well, and with great control.

     

  • Arizona Phil 3 days 11 hours ago (view)

    I've talked to Player Development people over the past many years about the Rule 5 Draft and how an organization goes about deciding whether to protect or not protect a player from selection. 

    STEP 1: How many of your Rule 5 Draft-eligible players are actually legit candidates to get selected in the Major League Phase?. Usually there a dozen or more who could conceivably/realisticaly get selected. You need to identify them and then carefully evaluate them. 
    EXAMPLES: See my lists above. 

     

  • crunch 3 days 14 hours ago (view)

    "There are no untouchables," Epstein said.

    In truth, the Cubs boss has said the same every year, but it certainly sounds like he means it this time. "We're in the 'information collecting' stages of the process," one general manager put it on Tuesday.

    https://www.espn.com/mlb/story/_/id/28066390/there...

     

  • Dolorous Jon Lester 4 days 16 hours ago (view)

    I think, in relation to the higher profile guys like Javy or Contreras, they're trying to put some pressure on to sign extensions.

    That said I do think they're listening on everyone with the only name I haven't seen being Rizzo.

     

  • crunch 5 days 8 hours ago (view)

    i wonder where the cubs will go with things.

    there's a lot pointing to the cubs being expected to listen to offers on almost anyone.  as it is, on paper, the cubs could roll right into 2020 with no changes whatsoever and still field a very competitive team.  the whole "shakeup" thing seems to be a very hot topic from a variety of sources, though.

    bryant, contreras, schwarber have all been linked to "cubs may be listening" rumors...probably listening to anything on happ, bote, almora, russell, too...

     

  • Hagsag 5 days 9 hours ago (view)

    Even the Cubs should be able to out bid the Marlins!

     

  • crunch 5 days 9 hours ago (view)

    "According to Joe Frisaro of MLB.com, the Marlins are "believed" to have interest in free agent outfielder Nicholas Castellanos."

    by interest, i assume they mean they'd like to have some baseball rookie cards or his or maybe a hug from him.  i can't imagine they actually want to spend money on someone they could use to make their team better because that makes no sense.

     

  • Arizona Phil 6 days 2 hours ago (view)

    Prior to joining the Cubs in 2012 Scott Harris was Director of Baseball Operations in the MLB office, which means he received, reviewed, and approved all major league and minor league contracts and transactions, as well as providing MLB clubs with schedules, rules updates, and draft information.