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.
Craig A. 7 hours 7 min ago (view)
I'll bet the analytics guys told him to.
Eric S 9 hours 21 min ago (view)
Bote's single accounts for RBI #26 on the year. Happ leads the team with 28 RBI - Bote got his in 72 fewer at bats than Happ.
crunch 10 hours 5 min ago (view)
pinch hitting j.martinez for v.caratini is another "why we doing this" batting substitution to add to the pile.
so far i'm a bit perplexed by some of the guys d.ross is having pinch hit in certain situations more than anything he's doing. almost everything else seems mostly sane.
crunch 10 hours 13 min ago (view)
lester with a "comeback" appearance... it's PIT, though...who could easily end up not even winning 20 games this season (15 as of now). still looked decent, even if not overpowering.
6ip 4h 1bb 1k, 0r/er
crunch 10 hours 17 min ago (view)
yeah, the oblique is one of those "few days, few weeks, months?" injuries. trying to come back too soon puts guys back to starting over.
Dolorous Jon Lester 10 hours 30 min ago (view)
Depending the severity, that may be how his Cub tenure ends. Hopefully not, he deserves better than that
crunch 10 hours 55 min ago (view)
bryant down with "right oblique" pain...
Charlie 11 hours 38 min ago (view)
The Troy Glaus comp has held up pretty well.
I don't know whether to think he's playing through an injury or going through similar small-sample frustrations as Baez, Rizzo, Schwarber, and to a lesser extent Contreras.
Dolorous Jon Lester 11 hours 46 min ago (view)
Shockingly by virtue of that HR he has been infinitely more productive than Jose Martinez
crunch 11 hours 59 min ago (view)
baez just bunted for a RBI single. that's both impressive and sad.
honestly, there's more than a few power hitters out there that can't bunt worth a damn and he pulled it off with enough ease you know he's put some work in. it's nice to see it done well even if you don't wanna see him do it a lot.
Eric S 11 hours 59 min ago (view)
Anyone else remember how Andre Dawson and his creaky knees looked in the 1989 NLCS against the Giants? That's the vibe I'm getting with KB. Not sure what is up with Bote but I hope he gets some consideration for starting at third.
crunch 12 hours 39 min ago (view)
cubs put i.vargas on the 10-day IL...later dude...thanks for that homer.
crunch 12 hours 58 min ago (view)
happ / rizzo / contreras / schwarber / bryant / heyward / baez / kipnis / caratini(DH)
Q will start tomorrow night.
Arizona Phil 15 hours 49 min ago (view)
If spotty command and inconsistency wasn't a concern, Rex Brothers would be Josh Hader. Right? I mean, a LHRP with a 95-97 FB and an 89 SL and he strikes out the side (which also happened to be the heart of the Twins order) 1-2-3 (all three swinging).
crunch 1 day 9 hours ago (view)
K...cubs lose. meh.
crunch 1 day 9 hours ago (view)
we really gonna leave this game to nico hoerner with 2 out and the bases loaded in the 9th? a'ite then. c'mon dude.