Cubs @ Marlins: Lackey vs Clemens (Game 73)

We're back...back in the saddle again.

I was going to make a Phish reference, but their lyrics are all pretty dumb. Sorry, Phishheads.

CHC (48-24): RHP John Lackey (7-3, 2.78)
MIA (39-35): RHP Paul Clemens (0-0, 5.40)
First pitch: 3:10pmCST

Lackey lost to the Cards on Monday (6 IP, 3 ER, 6 K, 3 BB). He’s 2-1 with a 1.75 this month. The Marlins are 45-159 (.283) against him. Suzuki is 36-119 with a HR. Stanton has never faced him.

Clemens has had one appearance this year, a no-decision against the Rockies (5 IP, 3 ER, 2 K, 3 BB). The former Astro has been kicking around the minor leagues and until this week had not seen big league action since August 2014. Ross has a hit in an AB against him, and Zobrist is 0-3. Clemens is fortunate to face the Cubs at less than 100%, although there’s still a pretty good chance that he gets creamed.

Hammel (7-3, 2.55) versus Fernandez (9-3, 2.36) at 12:10pmCST tomorrow.

Go Cubs!

Comments

Rizzo in, Zobrist out, Willson in LF, Montero back and Almora batting 9th ... let's score some runs

Contreras seems pretty adamant he'll play anywhere Madden wants him to so as long as he stays hot and with all the injuries it'll be pretty nice to have yet another bat Madden can move around. As far as him catching one of the things I noticed during the Lackey start is he seemed afraid to go out to the mound to talk to Lackey when he was struggling. I heard a Lester interview this week where he said one of the great things about Ross is he knows how to push Lester until he's close to getting punched without getting there, and Lester said that helps him a lot. Hammel sent a tweet a few weeks back cracking a joke about sending Ross to the All Star game so he can yell at other pitchers. Montero has been sucking in a lot of things this year but I can also tell he has no problems going out to the mound to get on to a pitcher if they are sucking and I'm sure he does that in the background too and those kind of mound visits seem to usually help get a pitcher back on track. I bet it's really hard for a young catcher to come up and learn to have that sort of dynamic with someone like Lackey so I think it's a good thing if he catches Hendricks and Hammel a bit more than he does Lackey until he gets comfortable with the hard ass aspect of managing a pitching staff.

Time to scrap the scouting report on Justin Bour and get a new one. Sheesh.

I remember AZ PHIL talking about Bour's power during the Hendry era.

He reminds me of a little of a young guy currently on the Cubs' DL, who is also tank-like in appearance.

Someone talk me down here.

It's a long season. There will be stretches like this. It's Saturday night. Drink copiously but responsibly.

"Drink copiously but responsibly." Done and done. Thanks for that.

Also, I'd like to know if there are numbers to back up my suspicion that there are a lot more fast starts than late June romps. This seems like a time where everybody not named Willson Contreras is looking a little tired and/or banged up a bit. For once, the Cubs got off to a fast start. Seems like I've been waiting for that for 50 years.Everybody is really gunning for this team, too. It's their playoffs.

Cubs have no spark and no life. Pretty boring to watch these days.

- The pressure of going for the regular-season wins record is now gone. - Joe will come up with more wacky dress-up ideas for the team to wear after they lose their next get-away game. - There is more clarity on Spencer Patton. - We play the Reds next. They aren't very good. - We'll have at least a 9 game lead after today. EDIT: - Contreras looks like the real deal. Other than that, not much -- nasty stretch. Two ugly losses in the last 4 games. Ugh -- give Lackey a 4-1 lead, you hope for better.

"The pressure of going for the regular-season wins record is now gone." Brilliant. Maddon is a genius!

Also -- despite losing 6 of their last 10, the Cubs picked up a game on both STL and PIT during that period. Weird, given that they swept PIT and were swept by STL.

That valuable RBIGIDP.

Oil Can Boyd now pitching for the Cubs

HAHAHA! I love it here! Brilliant...

I forgot how rail thin skinny Carl Edwards Jr. Is - he threw some nasty stuff - hope that continues

Joe: "We lost. They beat us. Now where's my '09 Guigal Bordeaux glass...?

Duane Underwood now 0-5 with a 5.44 ERA for Tenn. Urp. Warren not sharp at Iowa tonight. When will Cease and Hudson be ready? On a positive note, Jiminez with his 10th HR tonight. He has a .924 OPS -- the only player in the league with an OPS over .900. Leads the lead in 2B, SLG and OPS, tied for the league lead in HR and 3rd in Avg. Nice!

Former Major League All-Star Jim Hickman dies at 79 http://www.tennessean.com/story/sports/2016/0...

Ahhh...sad. Lke a few of you here, I saw him play during the '69-'71 seasons. He was the "hot Zobrist" for the club in August/September of '69 while everyone else was fizzling out...

Yeah, I have fond memories of old #28. He was a good field, no hit CF when he came up with the Mets, but later on in Chicago he had learned how to work the count and then demolish 3-2 fastballs. (Wish Javy Baez had the concept.) I remember, in '69 or '70, someone (maybe Durocher) saying that Hickman and Joe Torre were about the two best righty hitters in the league.

draft signings are trickling in...rounds 6-9 are signed + a random slew of others. http://www.baseballamerica.com/draftdb/index.php filter by team.

There's some BA is missing too, here's all signing bonus BA doesn't have some: -6 Hockin $241,000 (slot price), 7 Cruz $75,000 (saved $110,00), 8 Ridlings $120,000 (saved $53,800), 9 Robinson $30,000 (saved $132,300), so far the Cubs have saved an extra $297,100

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  • Arizona Phil 1 min 11 sec ago (view)

    Alfonso Rivas reminds me a bit of Rafael Palmeiro when Palmeiro first came up to the big leagues and was a "doubles machine" (before he started hitting home runs).   

    Rivas played D-1 baseball at the University of Arizona, so (just like Nico Hoerner, who also played in the PAC-12) I don't think he needs a lot of additional time at AAA before he's ready for MLB. He's a very advanced hitter, as long as you are OK with lots of doubles & lots of walks but not many HR.   

     

  • Dolorous Jon Lester 17 min 39 sec ago (view)

    I hadn't thought of that but I really like that option

     

  • bradsbeard 22 min 49 sec ago (view)

    I really hope Rivas has a chance at the LF job. Would ease some of the sting of Schwarber being cut loose. 

     

  • Arizona Phil 23 min 44 sec ago (view)

    CRUNCH: I got the impression that Ross had seen enough of Schwarber in LF, so implementing the universal DH may be necessary before Schwarber returns to the Cubs in 2021. I think the Cubs would be fine with Schwarber as their main DH going forward. 

    BTW, I strongly suspect that the universal DH will be included in the next CBA, but whether there will be a DH in the National League in 2021 is still TBA (which is really stupid, since clubs need to know right now for sure one way or the other whether or not there will be a DH in the N. L. in 2021). 

     

  • Arizona Phil 34 min 52 sec ago (view)

    Besides the guys on the 40, Cubs 2021 NRI relievers with a legit chance to win a bullpen slot in Spring Training include LHRPs Josh Osich and Rex Brothers, and RHRPs Jake Jewell, Trevor Megill, Dakota Mekkes, Michael Rucker, and Joe Wieland (presuming they are not taken in the Rule 5 Draft). 

    Brothers and Wieland are out of minor league options, however, so if added to the 40 they could not ride the "Chicago - Des Moines Shuttle" like the others could. 

     

  • crunch 40 min 48 sec ago (view)

    i am rooting for the cubs to retain schwarber.

    even though he's average on the best of days in LF (except his above average arm), i would like to see him and his work ethic remain in the cubs system...the homers from the left side of the plate are nice, too.

     

  • Arizona Phil 1 hour 3 min ago (view)

    At least as things stand right now, Kris Bryant is your Cubs de facto 2021 Opening Day LF! (Of course we know he will be traded before then...). 

    Otherwise, minor league NRI outfielders Ian Miller, Michael Hermosillo, and Rafael Ortega will be competing for Opening Day OF slots, with a legit shot to win a job.

    Even Alfonso Rivas (who was hitting rockets from foul line to foul line at AZ Instructs) and/or Eddy Julio Martinez (who has had a very good winter in the Mexican Pacific League) might have a shot.  

     

  • Arizona Phil 1 hour 5 min ago (view)

    I would think that both Colin Rea and Kyle Ryan must have signed contracts with minor league split salaries, otherwise I doubt very much that they would have been tendered. 

     

  • Arizona Phil 1 hour 17 min ago (view)

    With Tepera non-tendered and Winkler, Ryan, and Rea signed, the Cubs 2021 Opening Day bullpen (right now) would appear to be Kimbrel (clearly not tradeable), Wick (virtual lock), Winkler (can't be optioned without his consent), Underwood (out of minor league options), and Maples (out of minor league options), and then three from amongst Adam, Norwood, Rea, Ryan, Stock, and Wieck (each of whom can be optioned back & forth to AAA as needed).

     

  • Arizona Phil 1 hour 36 min ago (view)

    The Cubs have signed RHSP Colin Rea, LHRP Kyle Ryan, and RHRP Dan Winkler to 2021 MLB contracts (terms TBD) and tendered 2021 MLB contracts to all other unsigned players on their MLB Reserve List (40-man roster) except OF Albert Almora, OF-1B Jose Martinez, OF Kyle Schwarber, and RHRP Ryan Tepera.

    So Almora, J. Martinez, Schwarber, and Tepera are now unrestricted free-agents, free to sign an MLB or minor league contract with any club (including the Cubs) without any salary restrictions.   

    The Cubs MLB Reserve List now stands at 34 (six slots are open). 

     

  • Arizona Phil 1 hour 58 min ago (view)

    Keep in mind that as things stand right now the Cubs projected 2021 MLB payroll is almost $50M under the 2021 CBT threshold (which will be $210M), so they don't have to worry about contract AAV if they can sign a player to a multi-year deal with a low 2021 base salary and then substantially higher salaries post-2021 (when they should be able to generate their normal attendance-based revenues --.presuming CoViD-19 is no longer a problem by that time).     

     

  • Arizona Phil 2 hours 38 min ago (view)

    TIME OUT: As I mentioned in the post, the Cubs cannot cut Schwarber's base salary more than 20% without first non-tendering him, so if he is agreeable the Cubs could sign him for a relatively low base 2021 salary (something like $5M) combined with performance bonuses based upon actual PA (not pro-rated PA) maybe totaling $5M (which would cover the Cubs if the 2021 season is truncated), and then maybe an additional year or two (2022-23) for something like $10M per year plus performance bonuses (again, based on PA). Schwarber could get a player opt-out as well post-2021. 

     

  • crunch 5 hours 11 min ago (view)

    it's not surprising, but i also don't see the downside of giving him the $8m-ish he'd be owed.

    if you can hit 30+ homers that's usually money you can easily go get.

    i seriously wonder about this offseason and the amount of investment the cubs are going to make in the team.  i mean, it's fine if they go cheap yet somehow field a great team via off-season trades or other forms of black magic...i just don't trust how this off-season is unfolding so far.

     

  • Charlie 5 hours 18 min ago (view)

    From a sentimental perspective at least, non-tendering Schwarber blows. Several thumbs down.

     

  • crunch 5 hours 44 min ago (view)

    cubs pick up robert stock off waivers from the rsox...31 year old righty.

    throws hard (high 90s), has a slider (low 80s) , and a changeup (low 80s).  control and command isn't his best friend.

     

  • crunch 6 hours 18 min ago (view)

    schwarber non-tendered...almora, too...and jose martinez (yawn).

    bryant to be tendered a contract, but expected to be traded.