Cubs @ Phillies: Hamels vs. Nola (Game 120)

CHC (64-55): LHP Cole Hamels (6-3, 3.09 ERA)
PHI (61-58): RHP Aaron Nola (10-3, 3.67 ERA)
First pitch 6:05pmCDT

Hamels returns to his old stomping grounds for the first time as a visitor. He struggled in his last start, going only 3 innings and allowing five runs, four earned, in Cincinnati. Before that he was solid, and prior to that spent a month on the I.L. He got a no decision against the Phils on May 22 in his only start against his former team, allowing 3 earned runs on 9 hits in 4 innings. He's held Bryce Harper to 9-37 with one double and 8 walks. Realmuto is 4-11 with two doubles off of Hamels.

Nola took a loss to the Giants last time out, allowing three earned runs and striking out only three in five innings. The start before that, he struck out ten White Sox and allowed one earned run on three hits in seven innings. He earned a win against the Cubs on May 23, allowing three earned runs on four hits and four walks in 5.1 innings. Cubs are 17-90 against him with 35 strikeouts and a .627 OPS. Rizzo is 4-9 with two homeruns.

Comments

...and now jason heyward has "left knee inflamation"

being upset about not having heyward around is a new feeling.  neat.

his leadoff hitting replacement is a guy who's ob% (.238) is lower than his batting average (.250).  this is a radical new form of moneysballs.  some say it's ahead of the curve, but in reality it's ahead of the screwball.

kemp(2nd) / cast(RF) / bryant / rizzo / baez / schwarber / happ(CF) / caratini / ham

Good thing both Castellanos and Happ have been hitting. Can't say I understand Kemp getting the start.

I saw the OBP as less than the BA and assumed it to be a misprint but I seem to recall watching a telecast that showed an opposing pitcher with the same condition. How is this possible. What am I missing?

sac fly counts as a plate appearance, but doesn't factor into ob%.  the oddness of this is a bit more glaring with low PA.

ham melting down on the mound and the cubs video feed goes dead.

nice.

This teams complete inability to play competent baseball on the road is reaching truly unreal levels

BIG and instant standing O for ham.

nice.

this just keeps getting worse.  neat-o.

this game is a straight up crime scene.

10 runs in 2.1 innings, all earned, 8 belong to ham as his replacement a.mills gives up a grand slam to close his night.

in other news, the geraniums at citizen's bank park look fantastic.

I kind of adore the flowers there. Sat in the left field bleachers for a double header there in 2015 while very sleep deprived and the pastoral quality of the mostly empty stadium and the flowers is pretty burned into my memory.

Their horticulture game is highly stepped up.  They're not doing anything wildly spectacular, but inside and outside the park there's good visual interest all season long.

I work in this industry and I love seeing how many parks incorporate living plants into ballparks beyond what's outside the gates.

Coors Field in Denver has a rather neat vegetable garden.

Write a post (by which I mean series)!

Unfortunately, I've seen very little of this stuff in person.  I mostly know about it because I've actively seeked it out on the internet and read about it.

It is some stuff I'd love to see in person, though.

that game was straight up hot garbage.

big up alec mills (or brad mills as len keeps calling him) for jumping on the grenade tonight.  6ip 4h 2bb 4k, 3r/er

Cubs suspend South Bend RHSP Riley Thompson indefinitely. 

What happened?

seamer: He might have missed the team bus at the start of the current road trip (club left South Bend for Cleveland on Tuesday and he was suspended on Wednesday). 

He was tossed for use of a foreign substance on a baseball on the mound in his most recent start.

Whether that had anything to do with it or not. 

TIM: That would be a definite possibility.  

manager of the opposing team comment to local paper...

“You (could) see (Thompson) going to his glove, like right where his upper thumb is,” manager Anthony Contreras said. “He kept going to it and then as I got closer to it, as I was moving down the (third-base) line, I could hear the ball snapping off his fingers. He kept doing it. It was blatant. (He) just kept going to it. ... So I just asked the umpires, 'Hey, after the (third) inning, when he comes back out can you just check his glove?'”

the description sounds like he might have been using something other than pine tar.  while pine tar is illegal, it's one of those "everyone uses it" things that rarely gets raised as a major ball doctoring issue.  the "snap" sounds familiar to the sunscreen/rosin doctoring that's not as well recieved by competitors.  you can get some "spitball" like action while maintaining a great grip.  dunno, though...

That's got to be it. Tim's got it. Has to be connected to the foreign substance on the glove issue. The MWL (league) suspension must be pending and meanwhile the Cubs did their own internal suspension before the team bus left South Bend. 

Very disappointing with regard to Riley Thompson's suspension because I have him as the #3 Cubs SP prospect (behind only Marquez and Alzolay).

it's kinda hacky to doctor a ball by reaching into your equipment.

there's plenty of guys out there with pinetar or tuf-skin/firm-grip somewhere on their body they can hit up without looking like they're up to something sketchy.

Obviously the Cubs Player Development Dept. needs to do a better job of teaching guys how to cheat and get away with it. 

kevin gross or mike scott might be looking a job.

RIP joe niekro.

Alex Lange got tossed out of an early-season game at Myrtle Beach.  Suntan lotion where it didn't belong.  Traded.  Riley Thompson threw a curveball that nobody on earth could hit to strike out his last batter Saturday (see the video highlights.)  Six K's in three innings.  Ejected.  Suspended.  I guess the Cubs want people to make the majors on their playing ability, not their cheating ability.  Smart.

South Bend RHSP Riley Thompson has been reinstated from his suspension. 

Eugene RHSP Jeremiah Estrada (right elbow) done for the season. He has had elbow issues going back to EXST 2018, but his most-recent elbow injury occurred in the 8th inning of Eugene's game at Hillsboro on 6/28. 

TJS for RHSP Jeremiah Estrada. 

This was such a winnable series facing Vargas and Smyly. Now we are on the verge of a sweep if things break wrong tonight.

The loss to Nola hurt because they just hit us so hard. But it's the Vargas loss that is a shame.

The buzz on Riley Thompson is that he did what many pitchers do, just way too blatantly.  The opposing manager asked the umpire to check Thompson's glove because he was "going there every time" and the ball was "snapping" when it came out of his hand.  It was a ten-day suspension.  That is supposed to cost you two starts but South Bend uses a six-man rotation so Thompson only missed one.  Kudos to Buddy Bailey and the SB staff for navigating Thompson's absence effectively, with a lot of pitchers being asked to change or expand their roles over these two weeks.

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  • Arizona Phil 2 hours 5 min ago (view)

    Beginning in 2019, a club must wait a minimum of seven days before it can place a player who was claimed off Outtright Assignment Waivers during the off-season back onto waivers, so because he was claimed off waivers on Wednesday 11/27, yesterday (Wednesday 12/4) was the first day the Cubs could place LHRP C. D. Pelham back onto Outright Assignment Waivers, and so tomorrow (Friday 12/6) is the first day the Cubs can send Pelham outright to the minors (if he was placed back onto waivers yesterday).

     

  • Arizona Phil 22 hours 52 min ago (view)

    A Competitive Balance draft slot can be traded only during a period of time starting on December 2nd and extending up until two hours prior to the MLB First-Year Player Draft (MLB Rule 4 Draft), so don't be surpised if these draft picks are traded during the off-season.

    Keep in mind that the slot cannot be traded for cash unless it is a financial adjustment made to offset the salary of one or more of the players involved in the trade.

     

  • Arizona Phil 22 hours 54 min ago (view)

    The active list roster limit changes scheduled to go in effect in 2020 have not yet been officially approved. Same goes for the three-batter minimum (or else record the third out in the inning) for relief pitchers. 

     

  • Arizona Phil 22 hours 57 min ago (view)

    And then the active list roster limit will expand from 26 to 28 on September 1st (max 14 pitchers in September). 

     

  • Arizona Phil 23 hours 31 sec ago (view)

    The "26th man" who was added for doubleheaders will now be the "27th man" and he can be a pitcher. 

     

  • crunch 1 day 4 hours ago (view)

    ATL signs cole hamels 1/18m...a'ite then.

    also, z.wheeler 5/100+ to the phillies.

     

  • Charlie 1 day 20 hours ago (view)

    I think without the off-field issues, a front-office might at least be tempted to gamble on Russell's youth and dreams of his upside. But with what we all know about him now, the challenges of improving both on and off the field are too great to gamble on.

     

  • George Altman 2 days 10 hours ago (view)

    This was the easiest non-tender decision, maybe ever. As if there weren't enough off-field reasons alone, there were even more baseball reasons. He became a sub .700 OPS hitter with bottom of the order OBA results. His defense, formerly his strength, became inconsistent due to attention deficit issues. He turned himself into bench infielder with suspect skills which is someone you don't pay more than $1--1.5M/yr.

     

  • crunch 2 days 23 hours ago (view)

    he was due for a 3.5-4m payday (3.4m last year) at a minimum, anyway.

    it's as good of a time as any to cut him loose.  nico hoener's spring just became a lot more important.

     

  • Craig A. 3 days 5 min ago (view)

    Addison Russell, to no one's surprise, was  non-tendered. I still think he has the talent to excel in the major leagues, but it'll take a new attitude for him to realize his potential. It can't be easy to deal with his baggage in front of millions of fans. I won't forget his contributions in 2016, or that beautiful play that used to be the banner of TCR.

     

  • crunch 4 days 18 hours ago (view)

    keuchel doesn't have draft pick compensation attached to him and he's a decent enough ground ball pitcher...that will be attractive to a lot of clubs.  that would put 3 lefties in the cubs rotation (pending a trade) again, though.  not sure they want to go for that look again.

    that said, i still imagine the cubs are probably looking to make this thing happen via trade.  it's hard to tell what their $$ situation is, but they've done a great job signaling they're not looking to spend $$ this offseason.

     

  • Dolorous Jon Lester 5 days 56 min ago (view)

    Looking for impact starting pitchers, but won't be shopping at the top of the market? So I guess they won't be in the market for impact starting pitching.

    Still hoping they find a taker for Q.

     

  • crunch 5 days 3 hours ago (view)

    "Patrick Mooney of The Athletic writes the Cubs are in the market for impact starting pitchers but won't be shopping at the top of the market."

    darvish, lester, hendricks, Q, (???, a.mills, t.chatwood)...pending trades

    d.keuchel?  r.porcello?  trade target pitcher?

     

  • Arizona Phil 5 days 3 hours ago (view)

    HAGSAG: I suspect going into his age 30 season and coming off a great year as a pinch-hitter, LaStella wanted a chance to be an everyday player, and since that obviously wasn't going to happen if he stayed with the Cubs, TLS (or his agent) may have asked the Cubs to trade him somewhere he could get that opportunity.

     

  • crunch 5 days 4 hours ago (view)

    dunno any official reasoning, but his D is miserable and they decided to "upgrade" there with descalso for similar loot as well as getting a trade piece back.  the whole a.russell thing was lingering over the team.

    it's not like descalso is great with the glove, but la stella plays a miserable 2nd and meh 3rd.

    i do wonder if things would have turned out differently if russell wasn't due to miss significant time.

     

  • Sonicwind75 5 days 7 hours ago (view)

    Was just thinking about this, maybe that isn't a good thing for TLS?  I wonder if Maddon will use TLS differently after seeing his success last year.  That's my gripe with people complaining about Theo trading away a player that turns into an All Star.  If TLS had stayed with the Cubs, Maddon would most likely kept using him in the same manner and with the same results.