Cubs vs. Mets: Series Thread (Games 16-18)

The Cubs (6-9) dropped another series, this time to Atlanta, and now find themselves trailing Pittsburgh and alone in last place in the Central. They did, however, treat us to an offensive explosion in game 2 of that series and got 2-homer games from Bryant, Contreras, and Rizzo in the series. Bryant passed his homer mark from 2020 and is now 0.4 fWAR ahead of his total from that 60-game season, in a quarter of the time. Even so, he's been outhit thusfar by Willson Contreras, who has a .400 OBP. Rizzo's weekend also rocketed his slugging percentage up to .500. So at least the lineup no longer looks like a complete joke when they bring up the 2021 stat graphics at the beginning of the game. The first-place Mets (7-4) roll into town for a midweek series. If the Cubs' bats are going to build on recent success, they'll have to do so against stiff competition.


Game 16, Tuesday, 4/20, 6:40 pm central

CHC: RHP Jake Arrieta (2-1, 3.18 ERA)

NYM: RHP Taijuan Walker (0-0, 2.61 ERA)

Arrieta has strung together three solid if increasingly not-spectacular starts for the season. Last time out he lost while allowing 3 earned runs in 5 innings pitched.

Walker has now pitched in 9 major league seasons; I start with that just in case you are wondering, like I was, how he can be only 28 years old and still seem like he's been around forever. Despite many years of MLB activity, Cubs hitters have seen very little of him. His former division mate, Joc Pederson, has hit .429 against with a homerun in 14 at bats.


Game 17, Wednesday, 4/21, 6:40 pm central

CHC: RHP Zach Davies (1-2, 10.32 ERA)

NYM: LHP David Peterson (1-1, 6.30 ERA)

Davies followed up a 1.2 inning start by going only 4 innings and allowing 4 earned runs last time out. He pitched well enough to earn the win in his first start, but things have taken a nasty turn since then.

Peterson is a lanky lefty coming of a 6-2 debut season with the Mets. He has a broad repertoire of pitches and no history against Cubs hitters.


Game 18, Thursday, 4/22, 6:40 pm central

CHC: RHP Trevor Williams (2-1, 5.02 ERA)

NYM: RHP Jacob deGrom (1-1, 0.45 ERA)

Williams got the lone win against Atlanta. He was the beneficiary of an unnecessary volume of offense, but he allowed only 1 earned run in 5 innings.

Jacob deGrom is matching last year's 98.7 average fastball velocity. This game should be fun. A few Cubs hitters have done well off him--Rizzo is batting .500.

Comments

Follow-up on last week's discussion of Baez's contact and plate discipline woes. Another Fangraphs article notes that he is among league leaders in combined positive change in zone swing rates (swinging at more pitches inside the strike zone) and reduction in chase rate (swinging at pitches outside the zone). See the last table: https://blogs.fangraphs.com/lets-look-at-some-earl...

This makes his 45% strikeout rate and 1.7% BB rate all the more strange.

You can also find Ian Happ (swinging less overall) and Rizzo & Contreras (chasing less) in tables 1 and 2. It's all tiny 2021 sample sizes, of course.

untested opinion: i like boog/jd better than len/jd

...but damn, i miss len.

that said, boog and jd's sense of humor seem to be more closely aligned and they can play off each other easier.

Still getting over knee jerk reaction of fearing it is an ESPN broadcast when hearing Boog's voice.  Small sample size but I like JD more with Boog than I did with Len.  Still think I liked Len/JD more than Boog/JD.

Boog is doing a great job and fitting in well; I just really liked Len. To be fair, Boog/JD haven't had many good games to call this season.  Gotta be tough to being a new broadcast team and trying to add some excitement to some really boring games. 

early on boog had a fustrated moment trying to explain how hard it is to call games remotely because of COVID.

a bit later in the game they showed the TV screen that gives boog/jd various views of the field and that's all they had to create a game calling atmosphere.

it'll be nice when we get back to normal for a variety of reasons.

almora jr came in to pinch run last night and got some hugs from rizzo and some cheers from the fans.

tonight he steps up to pinch hit and a.mills steps off the mound while the fans give almora some cheers.

mills struck him out.  he's 0-3 with 2Ks on the season.

j.pederson to 10-day IL (left wrist).

nico called up and on the bench.

Very frustrating bottom of the 9th in game 3. The caught foul tip against Rizzo turned my outlook on the inning.

Less frustrating tenth. JHey should get a brand new broom.

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  • crunch 26 min 1 sec ago (view)

    i.vargas DFA'd...happ returns.

     

  • Wrigley Rat 18 hours 1 min ago (view)

    Tyler Suellentrop:
    - 92-95 mph https://twitter.com/P15Sports/status/1371873329565...
    - Dominant in the B9th with a 1-2-3 frame, striking out all three batters. FB 93-97 T98 https://twitter.com/rayteodora1/status/13015758552...

     

  • crunch 18 hours 6 min ago (view)

    it's really cool how playing vs DET in 2021 counts toward the MLB win/loss totals of a team.  it's like using a cheat code.

     

  • crunch 22 hours 13 min ago (view)

    there has been a ton of fringe signings the past 48 hours by many teams...guys that were not playing organized ball or playing indie ball for the past 1-2+ seasons.

     

  • tim815 23 hours 2 sec ago (view)

    The Cubs have apparently signed Tyler Suellentrop, a pitcher drafted by Seattle in 2018 from Indian River Community College in Florida. He's been assigned to Myrtle Beach. I expect he'll pitch on Friday.

     

  • crunch 23 hours 57 min ago (view)

    wrigley going 60% capactity may 28th.  hopefully we'll be 100% by july/august.

    we're getting closer to "normal."  i hope we can get things stable for those that can't get a vax, and those that are still refusing or on the fence will cross over and join the rest of functioning society.

    as someone who was on strong chemo with a wide open immune system a decade ago, i'm thinking about them and others in similar health conditions.

     

  • Arizona Phil 1 day 18 hours ago (view)

    VIDEO: Zach Davis and Rochest Cruz are (were) probably the two fastest players (sprint-speed on the bases) in the Cubs system (though not Cruz anymore, obviously). 

     

  • Arizona Phil 1 day 18 hours ago (view)

    Cubs minor league RHRP Ben Hecht (Cubs 2017 12th round pick - Wichita State) had TJS a couple of days ago. 

     

  • videographer 1 day 21 hours ago (view)

    Rochest Cruz had some success in the DSL a couple of years ago.  Too bad he didn't pan out.  Carlos Pacheco showed power numbers in the DSL two or three years ago along with a high K rate.

     

  • tim815 2 days 14 hours ago (view)

    The rush to 70 players.

     

  • Arizona Phil 2 days 14 hours ago (view)

    The Cubs have released OF Luis Berrelleza, INF Rochest Cruz, LHP Misael Garcia, OF Orlando Guzman, C-1B Brayan Mancilla, RHP Yander Montero, OF Carlos Pacheco, and OF John Rodriguez. 

     

  • crunch 2 days 17 hours ago (view)

    it screws up stats.  i know you play for wins/losses, but real money is on the line for players and makes agent/player homework selling their client a bit harder.

    it also makes historical comparisons difficult.

    the amount of time i've seen a fresh inning starting out...bunt guy to 3rd for an out, IBB, IBB is too high.  what would amount to a leadoff single following that can easily turn into 2 runs (1 earned) with guys on the corner...which usually leads to another IBB.

     

  • Charlie 2 days 18 hours ago (view)

    Jay Jaffe has a timely argument against the runner on second rule over at fangraphs: https://blogs.fangraphs.com/the-runner-on-second-i...

    I still don't know why we don't just have ties. Obviously, the Cubs could have dodged most of these situations by simply hitting a little bit during the regulation innings.

     

  • Arizona Phil 2 days 20 hours ago (view)

    The Cubs have signed free-agent RHSP Adrian Sampson to a minor league contract and he has been assigned to AAA Iowa, and RHP Michael McAvene, LHP Jack Patterson, and OF Donnie Dewees have been placed on the 60-day IL to open up slots for Sampson, Trayce Thompson, and Kyle Ryan on the Cubs minor league 180-man Domestic Reserve List. 

     

  • crunch 2 days 21 hours ago (view)

    well that sucked.

    2-game sweep, 2 games under .500

     

  • crunch 2 days 21 hours ago (view)

    stumbled onto this today...clip from a 2019 ESPN broadcast game with boog, chipper jones, and david ross in the booth...

    https://www.mlb.com/cut4/chipper-jones-sciambi-lau...

    boog used to call games for ATL, btw...