Cubs vs. Cardinals: Series Thread (Games 89-91)
The Cubs ended their eleven-game skid and found themselves tied for third, 9.5 games back in the division, and probably sellers at the deadline. The All-Star break is yet to come, however, and a route to contention remains merely unlikely rather than impossible. The Cubs could go on a 10-game tear and put the front office in a more difficult position with regard to the buying or selling. They'll have to get that work started in a three-game series agianst the team that enters tied for third place. I wonder which fanbase is more disappointed with their teams' season so far, the Cubs' or the Cardinals'. The Cards made a splash in the offseason, getting Nolan Aarenado away from a frustrating franchise in Colorado. He's lived up to the hype, but the rest of the Cardinals' cast hasn't been able to hold up their end of things. It's strange to see the Cards roll into Wrigley with both teams far from contention. Will that put a damper on the rivalry? It probably depends on the beer sales. See below for the pitching matchups.
Game 89, Friday, July 9, 1:20 pm central
CHC: RHP Kyle Hendricks (10-4, 3.83 ERA)
STL: LHP Wade LeBlance (0-1, 4.24 ERA)
I got bogged down by work and am writing this post up in the middle of the first game. Good news! Hendricks went 6.1 innings and left with a 4-2 lead. LeBlanc lasted three innings and allowed three earned runs. That's all I can tell you for now.
Game 90, Saturday, July 10, 6:15 pm central
CHC: RHP Zach Davies (5-5, 4.28 ERA)
STL: LHP Kwang Hyun Kim (3-5, 3.39 ERA)
Davies, who has missed few bats throughout 2021, struck out only one Philly over his five innings last time out. Still, he held them to two earned runs and did not earn a decision. His walk to strikeout ratio looks unsustainable, and the deviation from his career norms seems connected to the depressed value of his changeup this year. Hitters appear not to be biting on it out of the zone all that much and he has missed with it in the zone a bit too often. It is hard to see Zach Davies continuing to succeed unless he rediscovers a consistent change.
Kim, a veteran of the KBO, has turned out to be one heck of a signing by the Cardinals. He broke into MLB with seven starts in 2020 and held his ERA just over one and a half. He's continued his success, with a bit of regression, in 2021. He's averaging less than one homer per nine innings and a groundball rate just shy of 50% in MLB. His peripherals and stuff do not jump out at you, but everything seems to play. Kim debuted in relief in Philadelphia and made his first MLB start at Wrigley in 2020. He has not faced the Cubs since holding them to one earned run in 3.2 innings in that game.
Game 91, Sunday, July 11, 1:20 pm central
CHC: RHP Trevor Williams (3-2, 5.51 ERA)
STL: RHP Adam Wainwright (7-5, 3.58 ERA)
Williams missed about a month following an emergency apendectomy. Although this will be his first start off of the IL, he last pitched in relief of Arrieta, going 3.2 and allowing seven runs, three earned, to the Phillies. This will be his first time facing the Cardinals in 2021. Goldschmidt, Carpenter, and DeJong have all OPSed over 1.000 against Williams in his career.
Wainwright has strung together seven straight strong starts. In that time he's gone at least five innings in every start and not allowed more than three earned runs. There's little more the club could ask from their veteran righty, who turns 40 later this season. He's faced the Cubs once already in 2021, going eight shutout innings without a decision back on May 23 in St. Louis. Ian Happ is 8-17 with four homers off of him. Javy, 5-32 with eleven strikeouts against Wainwright, might consider an additional rest day going into the All-Star break.
Arizona Phil 10 hours 1 min ago (view)
Dillon Maples does not have the right to elect free-agency if he is outrighted to the minors, but he will be automatically declared an MLB Rule 9 6YFA at 5 PM Eastern on the 5th day after the final game of the World Series if he is not added back to the 40 in the meantime.
crunch 10 hours 15 min ago (view)
p.wisdom is the new cubs all-time rookie HR leader.
Arizona Phil 11 hours 32 min ago (view)
The Cubs will very likely be splitting the AZIL position players into two 14-man squads (like they did last year), with each squad playng in every other-game, and with the other squad having a Camp Day instructional work-out on a back-field when that squad is not playing in a game. There will also be five combined Camp Days during the course of the four weeks for all players from both squads.
Arizona Phil 11 hours 54 min ago (view)
DJL: No. Signing a 2022 minor league successor contract would only matter with regard to a player in the Arizona Fall League, because the AFL schedule goes past the date when minor leaguers are declared free-agents.
AZ Instructs ends on October 16th, which is about two or three weeks before minor league free-agency, so the three guys at Cubs Instructs who are eligible to be free-agehts after the World Series (Dakota Chalmers. Nicholas Padilla, and Eury Ramos) do not need to sign successor contracts in order to play in AZIL games.
Dolorous Jon Lester 13 hours 58 min ago (view)
Sorry to hear about your dad, Charlie. I lost my father almost 2 years ago now, some of my fondest childhood memories are going to Wrigley with him.
All the best wishes to you, sir.
First.Pitch.120 14 hours 12 min ago (view)
If you had Bote in the '11-'12- '13 Cubs draft dead pool, then you are a winner!
Dolorous Jon Lester 14 hours 45 min ago (view)
Dakota Chalmers... interesting. He's scheduled to be a MILB FA, correct? Would this be a good sign he has signed a successor deal?
Cubster 15 hours 19 min ago (view)
Maples dfa. Double Martini too. Hoerner and Thompson back and Keegan to start today. Hoerner bats 5th.
crunch 15 hours 29 min ago (view)
it's never a good time to be in the hospital, but things are extra complicated right now.
hope everything goes well for everyone.
Charlie 1 day 8 hours ago (view)
Listening to this in a hospital room because we are blacked out on MLB.tv. I don't know which surprises me more, that the Cubs haven't beaten the Brewers since April or that the Cubs beat the Brewers in April.
crunch 2 days 8 hours ago (view)
m.rodriguez to 10d IL, a.morgan returns.
Jackstraw 2 days 18 hours ago (view)
I like that the team was absolutely committed to not losing back-to-back games on a walk-off passed ball.
Eric S 3 days 4 hours ago (view)
And the funny thing is Rucker was the only Cubs pitcher tonight to post 0 runs allowed in the box score. You know things are really out of hand when Ross gives the okay for a Maples appearance.
George Altman 3 days 5 hours ago (view)
Is there a reason Preciado hasn't been in an ACL game in about a month?
crunch 3 days 7 hours ago (view)
i'd like the 2021 version of whatever d.ross is smoking bringing m.rucker into a bases loaded, 2 run lead in the 4th situation.
dude saw the situation and said "gimmie that guy with the 8.44era 1.59whip" as the first pen option to protect a lead.
rucker has been in 13 games and given up runs in 8 of them.
crunch 3 days 7 hours ago (view)
hendricks last 7 starts...
9er, 1er, 4er, 8er, 6er, 1er, 7er
3.68era - 1.29whip ...to... 4.81era - 1.35whip