Cubs vs. Marlins: Darvish vs. Richards (Game 35)
CHC (21-13): RHP Yu Darvish (2-3, 5.79 ERA)
MIA (10-26): Trevor Richards (0-4, 4.10 ERA)
First pitch 1:20pmCDT
The Cubs have taken the last two games on walk-off homeruns and Yu Darvish will try for the series win in a Thursday matinee. Last time out, Darvish had his worst outing since his abbreviated first start in Texas. He gave up 5 earned runs and walked 5 in 4 innings against STL but was bailed out by the heroic Taylor Davis grand slam. He has struggled with his command, walking 3 or more batters in all but one start this season. One of his two wins came against the Marlins (and Trevor Richards) on April 15. He struck out 8 in 5.2 innings that day.
Trevor Richards was only able to go 4.1 IP in his last start despite not allowing any runs. He's averaging just over 5 walks per 9 innings on the season. He gave up 5 earned runs and walked 4 in 4.2 IP against the Cubs last month.
This series has been as good a time as any for individual narratives to take the foreground. Victories against a team as bad as the Marlins always feel a bit hollow (and losses are beyond aggravating). So, it's nice to see Bryant and Heyward play hero. Hendricks followed up his Maddux with an efficient 8 inning start that looked for a while like a potential complete game. On the other side of the coin, Addison Russell returned from his suspension to a less than enthusiastic reception. And Ben Zobrist has taken a leave of absence for undisclosed personal reasons.
Precipitation shouldn't hold this one back, but they'll have to squeeze the game in between some thunder and lightning--brace for interruptions. The Cubs will welcome the Brewers for a more meaningful 3-game series starting tomorrow afternoon.
crunch 10 hours 57 min 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 1 day 10 hours ago (view)
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 1 day 14 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 1 day 14 hours ago (view)
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 1 day 14 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 1 day 17 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.
Dolorous Jon Lester 2 days 19 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 3 days 11 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 3 days 12 hours ago (view)
Even the Cubs should be able to out bid the Marlins!
crunch 3 days 12 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 4 days 5 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.
Cubster 4 days 13 hours ago (view)
Giants hire Scott Harris, from Cubs front office, as GM
Charlie 5 days 15 hours ago (view)
For anyone else who immediately wonders but is not invested enough to look it up, this is not Chris (Ryan) Young, former Padres starter and fisticuffs partner of Derrek Lee, but rather the two-years younger Chris Matthew Young.
crunch 6 days 2 hours ago (view)
rev up those off-season rumor fryers...
Jeff Passan @JeffPassan
Multiple teams in search of catching help believe Cubs catcher Willson Contreras will be available this winter. The Cubs will get creative this winter, and with a deep catching free agent market, they could trade Contreras and begin retooling under new manager David Ross.
crunch 6 days 7 hours ago (view)
former padres manager andy green is gonna be ross's bench coach.
green was c.rea's manager in SD, btw.
Arizona Phil 6 days 13 hours ago (view)
Last year the Cubs signed four free-agents to minor league contracts prior to the Rule 5 Draft: LHP Alberto Baldonado, OF Wynton Bernard, RHP Corey Black, and RHP Jose Rosario. All four were members of the Cubs organization in 2018 but declined to sign a 2019 minor league successor contract prior to being declared a free-agent, but then came back to the Cubs after briefly testing the free-agent waters.