Cubs vs. Cleveland: Series Thread (Games 73 & 74)

The Cubs took the final game of the series against the Marlins to avoid the sweep. Next they have two games against Cleveland. The Cubs enter the series tied for first in the NL Central with the Brewers. Cleveland enters 2.5 games behind the White Sox in the AL Central. See below for the pitching matchups.

Game 73, Monday, June 21, 7:05 pm central

CHC: RHP Adbert Alzolay (4-5, 4.06 ERA)

CLE: RHP Aaron Civale (10-2, 3.48 ERA)

Alzolay returns from the IL for the blister issue. It's been two weeks from his last start, a three-inning outing in which his command was noticeably off. Prior to that, he'd enjoyed a string of 7 starts in which he'd gone at least five innings. He took a loss in Cleveland on May 11, when he allowed three earned runs in five innings of work. Cesar Hernandez and Jose Ramirez each took him deep.

26-year-old Civale has enjoyed a great first half, due largely to a very low BABIP so far. He won his last start despite allowing five earned runs in five innings to the Orioles. In the start before that, he pitched eight scoreless innings and struck out eleven Mariners. The Cubs last saw him on September 16 of 2020, when he allowed two earned runs on seven hits in six innings. This will be his second career appearance against the Cubs.

Game 74, Tuesday, June 22, 7:05 pm central

CHC: RHP Kyle Hendricks (9-4, 4.13 ERA)

CLE: RHP Eli Morgan (0-1, 12.79 ERA)

Hendricks earned his seventh win in as many starts by pitching six shutout innings in New York. Over that stretch he's had an ERA of 2.54. This will be his first 2021 appearance against Cleveland.

Morgan has made a pair of spot starts for Cleveland, and neither of his first two outings have gone very well. In his debut, he allowed six earned runs in 2.2 innings to Toronto, surrendering eight hits and two walks. Three weeks later, he struck out five Orioles in 3.2 innings while allowing three earned runs including two homers. The 25-year-old righty's best pitch is a changeup, his fastball sits in the high 80s, and his batted balls have skewed very much toward the air since he's reached AA and above.


alzolay activated, k.ryan down.  ryan was brought up less than 24 hours ago and not used yesterday.  he was already earlier optioned to AAA and the cubs DFA'd r.stock to add ryan to the 40-man yesterday.  odd use of the roster, kinda...

CRUNCH: The only way this makes sense is if the Cubs promised Ryan when they outrighted him in May that he would be added back to the MLB 40-man roster within a certain number of days or by a certain date (June 20th). Otherwise, it makes no sense.

Ryan did have the right to elect free-agency when he was outrighted, but he accepted the assignment. 

11 pitches, 2 Ks and a hard ground out to start things for alzolay.

i wonder how many pitches he'll be allowed to throw if he can keep the game under control.  velocity and movement looks great.

haha.  ump checked alzolay's hat and glove between innings and declared it all clear.

stuff so nasty they wanna make sure you're not on that "sticky fingers" bandwagon.

69 (nice) pitches...goes 4.2ip and leaves with a man on 1st

4.2ip 3h 1bb 5k, 3r/er (2hr)

alzolay continues to have the HR screw him over.  12 given up in 62.1ip

nico expected back in early july...duffy had a "setback" and is in limbo...bote has started baseball activities, but nowhere near a return time.

d.ross pulls baez for alcantara for what was either a mental mistake forgetting the outs or totally not hustling by baez in the bottom 4th running the bases.

cubs are down by 1.

hell of manager power play.  hope this plays out well...expect it will.

“It did not feel good to take Javy out of the game,” Ross said. “I never feel comfortable doing that at all. That's a pit in my stomach and it was in my stomach the entire game.”


“I blame it on myself. I lost the count of the outs,” Báez said. “We talked about it. We're on the same page. I'll be there tomorrow to help the team.”

whole zobrist thing got fleshed out (no pun) in public now...

I am with my hero Zo.

The thing that gets me is that she cheated with the guy providing religous-based pre-marital counseling. Hmmm... this guy is abusing his (quasi-)professional couseling position to pursue an intimate relationship; forgot the parts of the Bible about lying, cheating, & doing dirty by the 2016 WS MVP; and clearly has very conflicted feelings on the marriage construct... yep, I'm blowing up multiple people's lives to ride-or-die with THAT guy. 

p.wisdom seems to have injured his right leg/knee swinging a bat...

he's back out in the field in the top 3rd...must be okay, but he sure doesn't look confidently healthy.  *shrug*  off-day tomorrow...

HR in the 8th.  dope.

I can not believe what a good 3b he has been playing.

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  • crunch 33 min 58 sec ago (view)

    hendricks wins #13...11 in a row.

    dude leads MLB in wins...and also hits given up.


  • Dolorous Jon Lester 1 hour 19 min ago (view)

    I think we're going to get very experimental over these last two months in the high leverage spots. Only caveat is they may want to see if Wick can handle the 9th once he's back.

    That, I'm pretty sure Ryan would have been my last guess to close out a game. Either him or Megill.


  • crunch 1 hour 22 min ago (view)

    javy swings on 3-0 pitch, outside, fouls off.


    javy strikes out, foul tip low and outside.



  • crunch 1 hour 25 min ago (view)

    baez coming into the bottom 9th, down by 1, man on 1st.

    standing O.  NY loves him so far.  part of the crowd is chanting "javy" and others "baez"...they'll figure it out in a few games.


  • crunch 1 hour 32 min ago (view)

    k.ryan coming in for the save, but j.jewell is in the pen warming up...don't think anyone is officially "closer"


  • Dolorous Jon Lester 1 hour 34 min ago (view)

    If we're looking to tank next year I think it would be wise to keep Brothers, Morgan, and Ryan. Toss em in high leverage spots, too.


  • Dolorous Jon Lester 1 hour 35 min ago (view)

    I'd guess it's him too. If we wanted boring it would be Winkler.

    Hopefully Ross gives the ball to MANROD.


  • crunch 1 hour 44 min ago (view)

    wasn't ugly, but it was nothing masterful...heuer goes 1ip 0h 0bb 0k only giving up an unearned run on a sac fly.  he may get the 9th because he barely worked the 8th (9 pitches).


  • crunch 1 hour 52 min ago (view)

    rex brothers sucks.  here comes heuer with the bases loaded and 0 outs.


  • Eric S 2 hours 18 min ago (view)

    Still trails Rizzo by 1 HR for a New York franchise


  • Eric S 2 hours 19 min ago (view)

    JHey with a bouncer thru the right side gets a two out rbi - his first rbi since July 16.  Happ with another true outcome nite: 3 Ks and a walk


  • Dolorous Jon Lester 2 hours 26 min ago (view)

    I'd guess Rivas at first. More contact, more low power.

     Wisdom at 3B!


  • crunch 2 hours 27 min ago (view)

    i imagine they'll go with hoerner/madrigal (aka, "hoes mad" for the disrespectful youth out there) at SS/2nd.

    that's a lot of contact without power, though.  this team needs to go buy/trade for some power.


  • crunch 2 hours 31 min ago (view)

    javy hits hit 1st NYM homer


  • Charlie 3 hours 3 min ago (view)

    I could see the Cubs signing a free agent 1B or Ss, an ok starting pitcher, and doing a half-competitive (i.e. finish in third place) phase while waiting for some of these prospects to arrive. Wouldn't be shocked if they get Rizzo back. It will take more than one season to build a real pitching staff, but I think ownership won't be willing to fully tank in the meantime.


  • crunch 3 hours 25 min ago (view)

    partial transcript from hoyer zoom call with media yesterday evening...why it was done the way it was, etc...

    (image file)