Cubs vs. Nationals: Series Thread (Game 128-130)

The Nationals roll into the Windy City scrapping for a Wild Card spot. The Cubs have a dog fight going with St. Louis, who matched the Cubs with a win Thursday and trail by only half a game going into the series. (Add to that drama the excitement of players' weekend! Yipee!) See below for the daily match-ups.


Game 128, Friday, August 23, 1:20pmCDT
CHC: LHP Jon Lester (10-8, 4.23 ERA)
WSH: RHP Anibal Sanchez (7-6, 3.99 ERA)

Lester pitched around a series of traffic jams last start. He managed six scoreless innings despite four hits and five walks and two errors by Bryant. He lost to the Nats on May 18, allowing five earned runs on 10 hits in 4.1 innings. (I was there! It was bad.) Dozier is 5-15 with a homerun off of him. Trea Turner is 4-8. Rendon is 3-7 with two doubles.

Sanchez has enjoyed a resurgence since leaving the Tigers. He posted a 2.83 ERA with Atlanta last year, a mark from which he has regressed a bit in 2019. His last start contributed to that regression; he allowed five earned runs on eight hits and four walks in four innings against the Brewers. Lucroy is 4-9 off of him with two homeruns.


Game 129, Saturday, August 24, 1:20pmCDT
CHC: LHP Jose Quintana (11-7, 3.91 ERA)
WSH: TBD

Quintana was excellent against the Pirates last time out. He struck out seven, allowed five hits, and shut out Pittsburgh over seven innings for the win. He has not faced the Nationals this season. Dozier is 11-52 off of him with four homeruns and 14 strikeouts. Kendricks is 5-10.

It's Joe Ross's turn in the Nats' rotation, but he's day-to-day with a leg injury. He's 3-1 in five starts this season, appearing out of the bullpen 18 times as well. Rizzo is 5-11 off of him and Bryan is 3-9. Castellanos is 1-2 with a homerun. Erick Fedde is likely to start if Ross is unavailable. Fedde won against the Brewers on August 18, allowing four earned runs in five innings. Active Cubs are 6-14 with a homerun off of him.


Game 130, Sunday, August 25, 1:20pmCDT
CHC: LHP Cole Hamels (7-4, 3.73 ERA)
WSH: RHP Stephen Strasburg (15-5, 3.56 ERA)

Hamels labored toward his win against the Giants, walking two and allowing two homeruns but limiting the damage to three in six innings of work. He earned a victory against the Nats on May 17, allowing two earned runs in five innings.

Strasburg shutout the Pirates for seven innings in a no decision last time out. He defeated Lester and the Cubs on May 18 striking out seven and allowing one earned run in eight innings. Heyward is 15-40 with a homerun and three walks off of him. Javy is 1-12 with five strikeouts.

Comments

Feel bad for the patrons at Wrigley this afternoon - seeing Strop in the fifth inning is a bad sign. At least the weather is nice

Thru seven innings, Cubs have one hit (by Nick C, of course) - this after somehow winning yesterday’s game with a total of two hits. Clearly it’s time to fire Chili Davis again

It's the Polar Bear in an Arctic Snowstorm all white uniforms. Burn 'em! Bring back the unis from the Little League Classic. They actually looked sharp.  

All whites are distinctive.  And ugly.

I think it's becoming increasingly likely that the Cubs will not exercise Lester's 2021 $25M option after next season (paying the $10M buy-out instead and direct the remaining $15M elsewhere). The 2021 $25M option automatically vests if Lester throws at least 400 IP over the course of 2019-20, but that isn't going to happen.

Also, although it didn't seem possible at the All-Star Break, Yu Darvish just might exercise his opt-out post-2019. Darvish signed a front-loaded contract and is owed $81M 2020-23 ($20.125M AAV), so if he and his agent think he can get something better than 4/$81M he just might walk (he can only opt-out post-2019, so this will be his only chance to be a FA before post-2023).  

I didn't watch the game, but I see that Lester got knocked around despite a significant headwind from CF. That's a rare feat.

There should be a number of good players and pitchers available off Outright Assignment Waivers over the next few days as non-contending clubs look to jettison payroll even if they can't get players back. The only problem is that the claiming club assumes 100% of the player's remaining pro-rated salary (albeit only one month's worth, unless the player is signed beyond 2019 and/or has a post-season buy-out).   

What happened to Danny Hultzen this time??

cubs can't field or hit anymore.

this is not a good late-season look.

yeah, and evidently they can't pitch either.

now we need a few stupid baserunning mistakes to go with this new look.

it's kinda crazy to think there's a chance pedro strop won't make the post season roster (yeah, the cubs have to get there first) unless he shows something different the next 5 weeks.  it's been hard to watch.

oscar de la cruz since passing through waivers unclaimed...8 relief appearances

11.2ip 11h 2bb 16k, 2r/er (both earned runs in 1 appearance)

Hoping that Rizzo's back won't be a problem.

bote up, holland IL

this pen is hot f'n garbage.

So the Cubs took the weekend off for Players Weekend. Makes sense to me. 

STL sweeps...CHC gets swept...

cards 2.5 games up in the central, cubs up 1.5 games for slot #2 in the WC.

And the Nats have the #1 slot, so we might get to see a rematch of Sunday‘s game. 

Man, JAVY last two weeks in SLUMPSVILLE: 200/237/286/523

so...cubs new leadoff hitter, right?

Can someone please ask Joe for his thoughts on his contract situation??

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  • Cubster 7 hours 33 min ago (view)

    per Tribune: Kimbrel's OK, just working on his changeup (formerly his fastball).

     

  • Arizona Phil 19 hours 53 min ago (view)

    The Cubs have released RHRP (and their erstwhile closer) Brandon Morrow. There is no indication that they plan to re-sign him to another (different) 2020 minor league contract without the Article XX-B $100K retention bonus provision (as happened with Jason Kipnis last week).  

     

  • crunch 23 hours 19 min ago (view)

    rizzo takes another day off (lower back).  ross says the club is "exercising caution."

    klye ryan is expected to join the team tomorrow after some mysterious holdup.

     

  • Ryno 23 hours 56 min ago (view)

    Has anyone seen Darvish's pitch "The Supreme"?  Isn't it just a sinker?

     

  • Ryno 1 day 4 min ago (view)

    In other words:  This lineup sucks.

     

  • Arizona Phil 1 day 21 min ago (view)

    Jason Kipnis was released on June 29th and then he was re-signed to a new (different) 2020 minor league contract that does not require a $100K retention bonus if he is not added to the Cubs MLB Reserve List by 2020 MLB Opening Day (7/23).  

    Brandon Morrow remains on his original 2020 minor league contract which pays him a $100K retention bonus if he is not released by 7/18 or added to the Cubs MLB Reserve List by 7/23. 

     

  • Eric S 1 day 26 min ago (view)

    There is that re Kimbrel - at worst, just another year on the books.

     July 1st is Bobby Bonilla Day - the day that check is cut and paid annually. 

     

  • Cubster 1 day 32 min ago (view)

    On the bright side regarding Kimbrel. It doesn't have the lasting bad side as the Mets arrangement with Bobby Bonilla. Unless they want to re-negotiate Kimbrel's terms.

     

  • Eric S 1 day 1 hour ago (view)

    Yep

    Watching the last night's highlight clip was not encouraging either as discussed here:  https://www.bleachernation.com/cubs/2020/07/08/craig-kimbrels-intrasquad-performance-is-a-reminder-of-the-concerns-that-already-existed/

     

  • crunch 1 day 6 hours ago (view)

    i still can't believe this front office paid anyone 16m a year to throw 60-70ip...

     

  • Eric S 1 day 16 hours ago (view)

    Unfortunately, Kimbrel in Cub mid season form as well, giving up a two out, two run oppo homer to Willson. 

    Kimbrel Cub stats which I tried to bury but were dug up again: gave up a career high 9 home runs in only 20 2/3 inning, averaged a career high 9.1 hits allowed per 9 innings and served up a 6.53 ERA for his troubles. And no full spring training build up period again.  Still hopeful he's got something left in the tank this year and next but man, he's got my full attention going into the season

     

  • BobbyD 1 day 16 hours ago (view)

    Hmm. Never thought about it that way. Maybe it is a very stable genius? 

     

  • crunch 1 day 19 hours ago (view)

    maybe he's hoping it'll be bad enough to flip the population odometer over to 0 after humanity is wiped from the planet.  let's give him more time to see if he's right before we get too down on him.

     

  • crunch 1 day 19 hours ago (view)

    "Shohei Ohtani threw just 15 of his 50 pitches for strikes in an intrasquad game Tuesday.  Trent Rush had him at eight walks, a hit by pitch and six wild pitches before he was shut down for a day. "

    ow.

     

  • crunch 1 day 19 hours ago (view)

    anthony rizzo is in mid-season form.

    he sat out today with lower back tightness.

     

  • BobbyD 1 day 20 hours ago (view)

    Well, back in February (I think; that was about 17 years ago now), our diaper staining commander in his own mind declared we had 15 cases in the U.S. and that would quickly go to zero. 130k dead and rapidly rising now 4 months later I still have brain dead neighbors in SoCal saying if Biden gets elected we're screwed. I wonder what they think screwed looks like.