Cubs @ Brewers (Game 47)
The Brewers defeated the Cubs in a 1-0 pitchers' duel and the series stands at 0-1 in the Brewers' favor. The Brewers are now 4 games behind the Cubs and 1 behind the 2nd place Cardinals. Are these games part of the "stretch?" It is September, and only 14 games remain. On the other hand, that's nearly 25% of the season. Both teams have had to manage so far without major contributions from their star hitters. On the Cubs' side, Bryant, Rizzo, Baez, and Schwarber are all near the Mendoza line, and Contreras only recently woke up. For the Brewers, Yelich is also batting near .200 and Keston Hiura has struck out 33.3% of the time while batting .224; their top performers have been Avisail Garcia and Jedd Gyorko. Will role players continue to prop up each team as they drive to the season's conclusion?
CHC (26-20): RHP Kyle Hendricks (5-4, 3.41 ERA)
MIL (20-22): LHP Brett Anderson (2-3, 4.64 ERA)
First pitch 6:10 pm central
When was the last time a starting pitcher earned a decision in every start of a season? Hendricks is perfect so far in having a W or an L pinned to his back for all 9 games. He's won his last two starts and has allowed 2 earned runs in 14 innings pitched while striking out 10 and walking 2. He last faced Milwaukee for that Opening Day shutout that seems like a decade ago. He's dominated most current Brewers, although Orlando Arcia has proven himself fairly pesky at 8-26 with 3 doubles and only one strikeout.
Brett Anderson made 31 starts in 2019, his second year of a return to the Athletics. It was his best year since 2010, and he earned a career high 13 wins. This year hasn't matched that level, although he has maintained a very strong 61.6% ground ball rate. He's allowed 4 earned runs in each of his last two starts and he earned a loss at Wrigley back on August 13 despite allowing only 2 earned runs and striking out 5 in 4.1 innings. Current Cubs have collectively slashed .287/.341/.476 off of him in only 58 at bats. Bryant and Schwarber have a homerun a piece. Scratch that. Brett Anderson will sit this one out and Brent Suter (plus the rest of the Brewers' fantastic bullpen) will oppose Hendricks. Since making 18 starts for the Brewers in 2018 and a subsequent Tommy John surgery, the soft-tossing lefty has worked primarily out of the bullpen. He's made only one start this season, in which he went 3 innings and allowed 2 earned runs to the Pirates (on August 31). He's had an uncharacteristically high strikeout rate this season, striking out 24 batters in 20 innings.
Dolorous Jon Lester 9 hours 6 min ago (view)
I understand why it feels unsettling. I remember the series well (though I, unlike Theo, actually was in high school). Anyway, I view it as a chance to right previous wrongs in the same way we stomped StL out of the playoffs in 2015, or the way the Nationals got to burn through two teams last year that had dumped them out of October in previous seasons.
But if we lose, of course that was 17 years ago so it's two extremely different organizations.
Arizona Phil 13 hours 7 min ago (view)
DJL: All players on Optional Assignment to the minors must be recalled on the day after the conclusion of the MLB regular season, even if the player has not spent at least ten days on Optional Assignment. Players cannot be optioned to the minors again until Spring Training.
Arizona Phil 13 hours 28 min ago (view)
CHAMP: No option year is spent just by calling up a player to MLB. An option year is spent only if a player on an MLB 40-man roster is optioned to the minors for at least 20 days in a given season.
Also, Brailyn Marquez is (was) eligible for selection in the Rule 5 Draft in December, so the Cubs were going to add him to the 40 on 11/20 anyway. They just did it a couple of months early.
bradsbeard 16 hours 38 min ago (view)
Not sure if serious, but Theo became the Red Sox GM in 2002. It's true though, there probably aren't many people in the organization besides Ricketts and Crane Kenney who have any strong feelings about that series.
Craig A. 17 hours 36 min ago (view)
I wonder if anyone on the Cubs cares or even remembers the odd events when the Marlins played the Cubs in 2003. I think Theo was in high school. To this old fart it will be more than a little unsettling to watch this post-season match-up. At least we can be fairly certain there will no fans grabbing for foul balls.
bradsbeard 21 hours 4 min ago (view)
Which is kind of annoying. Nobody really picked the Cubs to win this division pre-season. I guess Mattingly gets some credit for guiding the Marlins through their positives but even just letting them play that one game with half the team sick should knock him out of consideration. Meanwhile Ross kept a tight ship and the Cubs has no positives all year. I'd say Ross or Tingler should get it over Mattingly.
crunch 22 hours 21 min ago (view)
cubs finish 34-26 (1st, division)...they play MIA on wednesday.
good start for d.ross, but the manager of the year is most likely going to d.mattingley (MIA) or j.tingler(SD).
crunch 22 hours 58 min ago (view)
...or he won't make it out of the 8th
0.2ip 2h 3bb 1k, 5r/er...2 wild pitches
there's some great stuff in that arm. mid/high-80s slider, "changeup" around 90mph, fastball 97-99mph...all effortless. 21 years old and never pitched above A-ball.
crunch 23 hours 3 min ago (view)
crunch 23 hours 7 min ago (view)
rough debut...doubt we're going to see him in the 9th.
Charlie 23 hours 15 min ago (view)
Reminds me a little of Jeff Samardzija's debut. Adrenaline throwing straight gas but all over the place. Samardzija threw a fastball all the way to the backstop in his debut (2008).
crunch 23 hours 17 min ago (view)
back to back 3-2 count 6-pitch walks.
he's not in the zone. he's throwing almost totally fastballs, too.
crunch 23 hours 18 min ago (view)
alzolay's gotta be locked in for a start given what he's done lately.
i wonder what role j.lester will be given. if he's starting, hopefully he's the 3rd/4th starter, if at all. someone will probably give him a 2021 contract if he doesn't retire...hope it's not the cubs giving that contract, though.
crunch 23 hours 21 min ago (view)
dude's thrown a 97mph and 98mph fastball to start and both looked like he was barely expending effort.
unfortunately, neither were near the plate.
Charlie 23 hours 24 min ago (view)
So, Alzolay gets at least one October start, right? He'd be a weapon out of the pen if the Cubs had more than two believable starters ready.
crunch 23 hours 24 min ago (view)
Q goes 2 effective (2ip 2h 1bb 2k, 0r/er) and here comes b.marquez...