Cubs vs. Reds: Mills vs. DeSclafani (Game 95)

CHC (50-44): RHP Alec Mills (0-0, -.-- ERA)
CIN (43-48): RHP Anthony DeSclafani (5-4, 4.26 ERA)
First pitch 7:05pmCDT

Bad news first: The Cubs dropped the first game of the series in frustrating fashion (no hitting with RISP, fielding errors, bullpen inadequacy) and Willson is going to the IL with a foot injury. In the meantime, the Cubs are sending Mike Montgomery to KC in exchange for Martin Maldonado. Caratini seems likely to get plenty of at bats and the Cubs will have the option to use him more in the pinch if they keep Maldonado around after Contreras's IL stint ends.

More bad news, for me specifically: I forgot that Cole Hamels injured his oblique! Alec Mills's spot start comes as a surprise to me only. The 27-year-old righty has spent all of 2019 at AAA so far. I no longer know to evaluate minor league pitching stats now that the pitcher-friendly PCL combines with the juiced MLB ball, but he's gone 6-2 with a 4.73 ERA for the I-Cubs. He wasn't too bad in 18 innings with Chicago last year, making two starts and appearing twice out of the bullpen. The first of those starts was was a no-decision against Cincinnati, in which Mills allowed one earned run over 5.2 innings while striking out eight. He allowed one run to score on a Philip Ervin double in the second. The Cubs won that August 24th game on a walk-off HR from Bote.

Following his victory over the Cubs on June 30, DeSclafani's last start was a no-decision against Cleveland. He allowed two earned runs in six innings pitched on a pair of solo homeruns. Bryant is 7-20 off of him with a homerun (1-3 with a double against him on 6/30) and Schwarber is 5-14 with a homer and three walks (2-3 with two singles off him and a homer off Lorenzen on 6/30).

The Cubs are 3-7 against the Reds prior to today's game.

Comments

schwarber / baez / bryant / rizzo / garcia(2nd) / heyward / almora / maldonado / mills

almora picks up a career highlight reel catch in CF.

even heyward was pumped.

okay, im done with alec mills.

next.

31 pitches, 3 HBP by mills...and only 3 runs given up in 1.2ip so far!

montgomery is going to be used as a SP for KC.  good for him.

also, a.mills has calmed down into a hell of a nice welcome back start.  he's back on my xmas card list.

they're celebrating the 69 cubs at the park tonight.

they had a bunch of vets (led by billy williams) do the 7th along with a video edited together of ernie banks + ron santo singing the 7th so they could all sing along.  great touch.

Williams can carry a tune, if I remember correctly.

Dempster was unbelievable the other night, hitting only one note on-key, the second to the last word in the song, "ball."  Maybe he can do comedy, but forget about song-and-dance.

More rare sighting in last few weeks: a Descalso plate appearance or a Rizzo home run?  Descalso PA wins by an eyelash

Descalso actually had one his better at bats (even though he should have been rung up on a missed strike three) — a line drive one hopper to the shortstop

Near warning track power Rizzo not nearly as fun as home run derby Rizzo

rizzo's power outage has been a little alarming.  it seems to be bad luck more than anything obvious, though.

He is very streaky, both with his hitting for average and his power. I’m not too worried about it from the Cubs standpoint yet. From my fantasy team standpoint  a different matter though.

I’m trying really hard to reverse jinx it but floundering in a bad way. Seems likely he’ll hit 6 + in a week when the dam finally breaks

I really enjoyed his left-field hitting Monday night, though. It's not like he's forgotten how to swing a bat.

His two strike approach is very commendable on a team with so much swing and miss in it. Hoping he’ll run into an early count fastball soon that exits the park - he’s most certainly due. 

Well that settles it: Lorenzen is a better base runner than Brach. Brach haint got nuttin’

lorenzen is low-key one of the most exciting players in the game, seriously.  he's fun on the mound, at the plate, and baserunning.

phew...kimbrel is fresh off taking a half season away from the game, but im ready for a bit less drama out of his appearances.

Throws strikes like Chatwood.  Holds runners like Darvish.

From what a friend of mine who is a big Red Sox fan (ugh) had to say about him, don’t hold your breath on the stress free outings. He’ll usually get the job done but it’s frequently painful.

Almora - what a tool non-play there. 

This smells like a Chatwood game. 

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

schwarber in the bottom 10th!  walkoff homer.

Credit to Mills bouncing back strong - fifth straight quality start by the rotation certainly helps things. Yu for the series win tomorrow 

This is funny. The roller coaster life of Cub fans.

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  • Cubster 1 hour 59 min ago (view)

    Bluejays locked up a playoff spot. Looks like it's the Astros that are out. They are unlikely to get a "Buffalo" home game if they are the last seed.

    =============

    Tribune Cub Notes (Friday AM):

    Revenue drop leads to layoffs

    By Mark Gonzales

    The Cubs on Thursday laid off about 60 members of their business department because of declining revenue amid the COVID-19 pandemic, a source told the Tribune.

     

  • crunch 17 hours 5 min ago (view)

    the scary part of this team-wide slump, and especially this series, is PIT is basically a AAA level talent team that had 15 wins all season coming into the cubs series.

    cubs are limping into the post-season.  heyward is pretty much the only consistent hitter.  well, technically jose martinez has been consistent, too.

     

  • blockhead25 17 hours 22 min ago (view)

    Hey, anything could happen.  They could win 4 2-1 games in a series.

    Or lose 8-0, 6-0 in the first round and be done.

     

  • Charlie 17 hours 42 min ago (view)

    3 days left to get psyched for the post season?

     

  • blockhead25 18 hours 37 min ago (view)

    This is an impressive level of offensive offense.  This week feels like the final week of 2018 when we also had a lousy 4 game series with the Pirates, just without one of the other teams winning the final 8 games to catch us. 

     

  • QuietMan 21 hours 12 min ago (view)

    So whatever happened to the don't pitch Mills the day after Hendricks plan?

     

  • crunch 21 hours 26 min ago (view)

    rizzo / contreras(DH) / heyward / schwarber / maybin(CF) / kipnis / baez / caratini / bote

     

  • Dolorous Jon Lester 1 day 4 hours ago (view)

    I agree with all of this. I think KB is traded for a SP. I guess here is my guess at the pitchers:

    Darvish

    Hendricks

    Trade Acquisition 

    Cheap FA

    Mills/ Alzolay 

    Bullpen: Mills/ Alzolay, Underwood, Adam, Tepera, Wick, Kimbrel, Ryan, Wieck (Alzolay if he loses the 5th spot battle with Mills is still starter number 6, and likely being groomed to join the rotation either later in the year or 2022)

     

  • Charlie 1 day 15 hours ago (view)

    Frazier beat him on an inside corner two-seamer (albeit belt high), but the Hayes homer came on an 0-2 meatball. Not very professorial.

     

  • crunch 1 day 15 hours ago (view)

    hendricks starts the game giving up back to back homers.  wtf...

     

  • crunch 1 day 18 hours ago (view)

    happ / rizzo / contreras / schwarber(DH) / maybin(LF) / heyward / baez / kipnis / bote

     

  • George Altman 1 day 19 hours ago (view)

    Let's hope so. It would be great next year to NOT have to 'piece together a bullpen'.

     

  • Arizona Phil 1 day 19 hours ago (view)

    DJL: I think that if Lester, Chatwood, Quintana, Jeffress, and Chafin leave via free-agency and do not return or are not replaced by at least one veteran MLB FA SP, the default Cubs 2021 Opening Day pitching staff will be Darvish, Hendricks, Mills (out of options), Alzolay (could be out of options - TBD), and either Rea, T. Miller, Steele, Abbott, Marquez, or D.

     

  • Arizona Phil 1 day 20 hours ago (view)

    I understand that any team can win a three-game series, but if I'm a division winner I'd want to be the #3 seed rather than the #2 seed in both the A. L. and the N. L., because I would rather face the worst second place team (Houston in the A. L. and probably Miami or Philadelphia in N. L.) than the best wild card team (Cleveland in the A. L. and probably Cincinnati or Milwaukee in the N.L.).  

     

  • Hagsag 2 days 4 hours ago (view)

    Maybe, if he makes the roster!

     

  • Charlie 2 days 10 hours ago (view)

    Jose Martinez is going to hit some big post season homerun, isn't he?