Cubs vs. Mets: Series Thread (Games 74-77)
Willson Contreras resuscitated the Cubs offense last night. They'll try to keep the juices flowing in a 4-game series against the Mets. Said Metropolitans enter town at a disappointing 35-39 mark and 2-5 over their last two series. Their offense is just a tick above average by wRC+ (barely behind the Cubs at the moment) and the pitching staff is 4th worst in the majors by ERA-. First baseman Pete Alonso has been the season's pleasant surprise, mashing 24 homeruns before the midpoint in his debut season. Jacob deGrom and Syndergaard remain good but look far more mortal than past iterations. They lost Yoenis Cespedes to an ankle injury that will prevent him from appearing at all this year. Meanwhile, the Cubs have called up Adbert Alzolay to help out of the bullpen while Hendricks and the training staff navigate his shoulder impingement. See below for daily matchups.
6/20, game 74, 7:05pmCDT
CHC: RHP Tyler Chatwood (3-1, 3.60 ERA)
NYM: RHP Walker Lockett (0-0, -.-- ERA)
Chatwood was good in his only 2019 start, when he filled in for Jon Lester. He has appeared at times to have mostly harnessed his control out of the bullpen. Alzolay is on track with his turn in the rotation and may be ready to piggy-back if Chatwood looks shaky. Current Mets have gone 15-47 off of him with a .900 OPS. Michael Conforto is 2-9 with 4 walks, but no one else has seen Chatwood more than 6 times (Cano).
Lockett went 0-3 with a 9.60 ERA in four 2018 starts. He's only made five minor league starts in 2019 and the results haven't been especially great. Methinks this one is filler. Schwarber, Rizzo, and Heyward are collectively 6-9 with two homeruns off of him.
6/21, game 75, 1:20pmCDT
CHC: RHP Yu Darvish (2-3, 4.65 ERA)
NYM: LHP Jason Vargas (3-3, 3.74 ERA)
Darvish got served a no-decision despite 7 innings of one-run and ten-K ball against the Dodgers. Since May 15, his ERA has been 4.01, and in June it's 3.44. I encourage your cautious optimism. Cano is 9-25 against him, but the injured Cespedes and Lowrie account for most of the rest of the Mets' ABs against Darvish.
Vargas went four innings allowing three runs, two earned, against the Cards on June 16. He shut out the Giants on the fifth? Don't ask me how. Current Cubs are 3-23 off of him, but Rizzo and Gonzalez (2-15) account for the bulk of that.
6/22, game 76, 1:20pmCDT
CHC: LHP Jose Quintana (4-6, 3.87 ERA)
NYM: RHP Zack Wheeler (5-5, 4.94 ERA)
Quintana has a 4.34 ERA going back to May 16. He's looked hittable but not terrible over that time, with his K/9 down all the way to 6.27. He earned a no-decision against the Doddgers last time out, going five and allowing two earned runs. Current Mets are 19-66 off of him, and Cano is 7-19 with a homer.
Wheeler is better than his ERA suggests. That said, his last few starts have been rough; he's allowed 12 earned runs in 17.2 innings this month while seeing a drop in his groundball percentage. Heyward is 8-24 with two homeruns off of him.
6/23, game 77, 1:20pmCDT
CHC: LHP Cole Hamels (6-2, 2.85 ERA)
NYM: RHP Jacob deGrom (4-6, 3.26 ERA)
Hamels' scoreless streak ended in his last start and he got only a no-decision despite twirling seven innings of one-run ball against the White Sox; Eloy happened. If you're keeping track, that's one earned run in 29 innings pitched this month. Juan Lagares is 11-28 off of him and Adeiny Hecheveria is 12-33. Hamels has held Cano to 9-41.
Jacob deGrom has been almost the same pitcher as he was in 2018 except for a rise in both his HR/9 and his ERA. He went 8.1 against ATL for a win in his last start, allowing two earned runs and striking out 10. CarGo is 4-13 with a homerun off of him, Rizzo is 9-20 with a homerun, and Bryant is 4-11 with two homers. Javy is 1-8 with five strikeouts.
Jackstraw 1 hour 5 min ago (view)
Last 30 games ERA: 5.47
Last 15 games ERA: 6.08
Last 7 games ERA: 9.45
To quote Herb Brooks, "You're playing worse every day and right now you're playing like it's next month."
crunch 1 hour 10 min ago (view)
contreras expected to be activated Wednesday.
also, this is one hell of a slow trade market with the deadline 8 days away.
Dolorous Jon Lester 5 hours 51 min ago (view)
Further losses and probably some of the recent ones Strop has coughed up too. It’s very frustrating there’s no talk of moving him down the relief depth chart too. Just “he’ll figure it out and get himself right.” I don’t think so, Joe!
Jackstraw 7 hours 21 min ago (view)
Yes, yes, and yes. Except for the very best in the game, relievers have the most variability in performance from year to year. Kintzler was horrible last year, and is very very good in 2019. Strop was good last year, this year his 5.47 ERA has been well earned.
This problem has a simple solution of Cishek-Kintzler-Kimbrell for the 7th-8th-9th. Any further losses due to Strop in the 8th are on Joe.
Eric S 7 hours 32 min ago (view)
We’re nearing August and Strop’s ERA is a tick under 5.50 - #notafluke
Charlie 8 hours 13 min ago (view)
I had to ditch this one after the 7th to get some sleep, and, boy--right choice.
Eric S 8 hours 18 min ago (view)
To everyone in Cub nation except the folks that matter. Exasperating.
Dolorous Jon Lester 8 hours 34 min ago (view)
I think its past time where Strop shouldn’t be the 8th inning guy anymore....
erich081 16 hours 22 min ago (view)
Brach in during a one run game where the ball seems to be flying out of the park? I too like to live dangerously.
Eric S 16 hours 38 min ago (view)
Robel’s 454 foot splashdown - 6th longest homer by a Cub this season
Arizona Phil 18 hours 2 min ago (view)
RHP Aneuris Rosario (2014 IFA - Dominican Republic) has been reinstated from the Disqualified List. Now 24, Rosario spent four seasons in the DSL (2014-17) and was the one-time closer for DSL Cubs #1. He hasn't pitched since 2017.
Charlie 18 hours 23 min ago (view)
Last hurrah as a starter before the Cubs trade for an outfielder who gets on base?
crunch 19 hours 22 min ago (view)
i wonder why almora's started almost every game the past week+, especially since he's sucked at it...and he even got to hit leadoff for a game or 2.
Charlie 19 hours 50 min ago (view)
Oof. Almora and Maldonado as starters is going to be rough on the offense. Better hope for at least a Garcia triple.
crunch 20 hours 36 min ago (view)
schwarber / baez / bryant / rizzo / garcia(2nd) / heyward / almora / maldo / a.mills
ham gets a AAA rehab start tomorrow. also, i could do with less almora.
QuietMan 1 day 2 hours ago (view)
Edwards optioned to Iowa per Jesse Rogers,