NLCS Game 5 Preview: Cubs vs Dodgers

Five hits. Three homeruns.

That was the result of last night's (I'll say it) improbable victory over the Dodgers to stave off elimination. Is that how you saw the game being played out? I sure didn't. But whatever works I suppose.

So tonight, there's another chance. Another game to continue, what would be, one of the more incredible comebacks in sports since the Cubs did the same exact thing last year during the World Series. How confident are you feeling? Personally, I'm this weird "whatever" stage. Not that I'm apathetic towards the whole situation, but rather I'm just so happy to even have the opportunity to watch this team play at least one more game. They haven't played well, and haven't looked like they even deserve to move on. So for a sweep not to happen...that's pretty neat in my book. I'm just along for the ride at this point.

There is some interesting match-ups in tonight's game. For starters, the Cubs have simply owned Clayton Kershaw. But let's actually forget a moment about the Cubs bats. Over his career in the postseason, Kershaw currently owns a 4.76 ERA . Think about that... 4.76 ERA. It's especially shocking to note that his career ERA in the regular season is 2.36. That's quite the gap. Actually it's huge.

In his last time out, the Cubs were on the losing end of Game 1. But even so, the Cubs bats were certainly squaring ole' Clayton up. But there's one guy in particular to keep an eye tonight: Anthony Rizzo. While he certainly has all but disappeared this NLCS, he has a career .357 average along with 2 homeruns in 14 at-bats against Kershaw.

The Cubs will need to score early and often over the course of the first 4 innings. If they don't, they're going to be in deep trouble. With Wade Davis presumably unavailable after pitching both the 8th and 9th innings last night, and Kenley Janson presumably the most amount of available you could be after not being used in Game 4, the Cubs will need to simply outhit the Dodgers starter before they see the likes of Jansen & Co. Simple as that...as long as Jose Quintana remains Jose Quintana.

Game information:
7:00pm CST on TBS

Lineups:

-Cubs-
1. Albert Almora Jr. (CF)
2. Kyle Schwarber (LF)
3. Kris Bryant (3B)
4. Anthony Rizzo (1B)
5. Willson Contreras (C)
6. Addison Russell (SS)
7. Javier Baez (2B)
8. Ben Zobrist (RF)
9. Jose Quintana (P)

-Dodgers-
1. Chris Taylor (CF)
2. Justin Turner (3B)
3. Cody Bellinger (1B)
4. Yasiel Puig (RF)
5. Logan Forsythe (2B)
6. Kike Hernandez (LF)
7. Austin Barnes (C)
8. Charlie Culberson (SS)
9. Clayton Kershaw (P)

Matchups:
[Courtesy of MLB.com]

screen-shot-2017-10-19-at-2-07-02-pm

Comments

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  • With the Cubs, so long as they are not eliminated, they have another chance.
    What freaked me last night was that Pat and Ron thought there was a rule in baseball that the umps are supposed to look at the video board, even though local management controls what's on there. Fortunately, UIC's own Granderson still struck out.

  • In reply to jack:

    I've never seen a call like that, where a
    batter is given another strike. It's like when the home team puts more time on the clock at the end of a basketball game to give the them aother shot at scoring.

  • All the talk is about Cubs hitters or lack there of, and rightfully so, Kershaw, the Dodgers hitters or their bullpen BUT to me the key to this game is Quintana. He needs to go at the very least 6, preferrable 7 and more importantly if and when the Cubs score he needs to shut them down the following half inning. Do not let them answer.

    I also have a "weird' feeling, not a bad feeling just "weird" feeling about this game but a couple things I am hanging my hat on.

    1. The Dodgers lost 10 in a row and 16 of 18 THIS year, as good as they have been, they have shown they can be just as bad.
    2. Cubs = sleeping giant. They are due for an offensive explosion. They have not had 1 good offensive game all postseason. Game 5 NLDS was filled with misques and calls that could have gone one way or another.
    3. Javy came alive last night, he is streaky but dont forget he almost single handedly carried them offensively last year to WS. Plus maybe that sparks someone else tonight?

    Lastly, there are 2 guys the Cubs dont wont see and/or cant beat you tonight, Turner & Jansen. I give Turner NOTHING to hit, walk him if you have to in key situations. Jansen will be available for 6 + outs in my book, so don't let the Dodgers get in a situation to use him.

  • In reply to Ronnie’sHairpiece:

    Bryant and Rizzo still need to do something.

  • In reply to jack:

    Absolutely but they aren't right now and neither is anyone else really. Unfortunately, fair or not, Quintana almost has to have the mindset of pitching a shutout. The offense is just not reliable right now, so its on him to make 1 or 2 runs stand up. Plus with Davis perhaps being unavailable, its even more important for him going deep, we dont want to take our chance with Edwards, Lackey and/or other middle relief options.

  • In reply to Ronnie’sHairpiece:

    Pitching is important but without the bats we don't win. We're not winning a 3-2 game like last night or anything of the sort. There has to be some separation or we're going home. I think the bats explode tonight though and we get this done.

  • In reply to jack:

    Its 2-0 Dodgers and we still need Bryant & Rizzo to awake !

  • Is Davis available for a 3out save tonight?

  • In reply to 44slug:

    Might need him for a three INNING save....

  • In reply to 44slug:

    Joe said davis isn't available tonight

  • Here are the current Win WS Odds from 538.com after
    games of 10/18/17:

    538 Rating / Win World Series
    *at completion of day’s games

    Pre WC Games….………10/6 *…………..……10/7 *…………….
    CLV 1604 / 27%…….CLV 1607 / 34%……CLV 1607 / 33%……
    LAD 1564 / 18%…….LAD 1566 / 19%……LAD 1569 / 23%……
    HOU 1569 / 15%…….HOU 1576 / 22%……HOU 1576 / 22%……
    WAS 1551 / 11%…….WAS 1547 / 6%……..WAS 1550 / 8%……..
    CHN 1559 / 10%…….CHN 1563 / 13%……CHN 1560 / 9%…….
    BOS 1553 / 7%………BOS 1546 / 1%……..BOS 1546 / 1%………
    NYY 1561 / 6%………NYY 1560 / 2%…….NYY 1560 / 2%……..
    AZD 1539 / 3%………AZD 1540 / 3%…….AZD 1537 / 1%……..

    ………..10/9 *…………….10/11*……………….10/12*…………….
    CLV 1602 / 23%……
    LAD 1571 / 27%……LAD 1571 / 30%…..…LAD 1571 / 31%…..…
    HOU 1572 / 24%……HOU 1572 / 29%……..HOU 1572 / 30%……..
    WAS 1548 / 4%……..WAS 1553 / 10%……..
    CHN 1562 / 14%……CHN 1558 / 9%…….CHN 1560 / 18%…….
    NYY 1566 / 7%……..NYY 1570 / 22%…….NYY 1570 / 20%…….

    ……….10/14*…………….10/15*………….…….10/17*…
    LAD 1574 / 37%……LAD 1576 / 43%…….LAD 1581 / 52%………
    HOU 1575 / 43%..…HOU 1575 / 41%…….HOU 1568 / 26%……..
    CHN 1557 / 12%..…CHN 1555 / 7%………CHN 1550 / 2%………
    NYY 1567 / 8%….…NYY 1567 / 8%……….NYY 1574 / 20%……..

    ……….10/18*………
    LAD 1579 / 50%…..
    HOU 1564 / 15%..…
    CHN 1552 / 4%..….
    NYY 1578 / 32%…..

    Thursday Game 5 win odds:

    538.com: LAD 53% CHN 47%

    Baseball Prospectus: LAD 54% CHN 46%

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to wthomson:

    thanks for listing these, but truthfully, am I the only one that doesn't understand what I'm looking at?

  • In reply to Jonathan Friedman:

    The first number is 538's proprietary (at least I haven't seen a detailed formula) calculation of each team's "quality", calculated after each game. Note that it changes from day-to-day. The percentage number is 538's calculation that a particular team will win the World Series, again recalculated after each game.

    The Game win odds are simply 538's and BP's calculations that a particular team will win that day's game. It is primarily based on overall team quality, with the starting pitcher and home team roughly equal lesser weights. Note that the starting pitcher would already be part of the overall team quality, so in a sense it would be counted twice.

    Also note that Nate Silver, the founder of 538, also used to work for BP, where he developed the PECOTA evaluations. Therefore it isn't surprising that 538 and BP make similar projections.

  • In reply to wthomson:

    By "lesser weights" above, as best I can figure, team quality (including starting pitchers) accounts for about 80% of the weight, while the day's starting pitcher and home field account for about 10% each.

  • On the bright side, if the Cubs lose tonight, then there's the chance that we'll be treated to a Yankees-Dodgers World Series, because baseball hasn't had enough of those.

  • In reply to Lildude:

    Go Starlin?

  • In reply to Myles Phelps:

    Go Cubs! I'm curious if they would play Starlin's walk-up song for him when he bats in the World Series at Wrigley. That would be cool. Only one way to find out...

    Go Cubs!

  • In reply to Lildude:

    These Yankees are actually fun to watch but I'd much rather our boys be facing them than me rooting for them against LA. Me, rooting for the Yankees would signal the four horsemen are upon us.

  • Does Maddon know Kershaw is left handed? Zobrist in right? Schwarber in left?

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to 2016 Cubs:

    I just saw where lefties hit better against Kershaw than righties. If that is true than why is zobrist starting tonight? He can't hit from the right side at all and is terrible defensively. I don't get it.

  • Need quintana to pitch a complete game gem like he did vs milwaukee or at least 7-8 inning gem.That's the cubs only hope.Obviously the offense has to come through.If the cubs win tonight everything changes for l.a. they will feel the pressure because game 6 becomes a must win for them.All the cubs runs this series have been from hr's I hope they do whatever it takes to score runs bunt,steal,sacrifice fly whatever just score some runs.

  • In reply to bolla:

    ...and walk a bit!!

  • I was listening to Mike Krukow on the radio this morning, and he captured my mood. He said that he thought the series was likely over, and that the Dodgers would win. He said the Dodgers just seemed to have more of a mental edge than the Cubs, what yesterday I called The Eye of the Tiger. But...he said if the Cubs were to come out tonight, rough up Kershaw and beat the Dodger ace, then all bets are off. Momentum can shift quickly.

    So, I was very happy to hear Maddon say that both Lester and Hendricks will not come out of the pen tonight. They are gearing up for games 6 and 7.

  • In reply to Cubswin09:

    Don't believe that. it will be all pitchers on deck, including Davis for a batter or two. That's of course if he can lift his arm out of sling.

  • In reply to willycat:

    @CarrieMuskat: #Cubs Lester says he's preparing to start Game 6. Not available in relief tonight.

  • In reply to Cubswin09:

    I'm sure that's the plan without the influence of adrenaline and testosterone. Lester is a beast. He can go an inning tonight, if need be, and still start Game 6. Ideal? No. But there is no tomorrow if we lose.

  • In reply to Cubswin09:

    Games 6 & 7 ? Where will the games be played, Grant Park ?

  • There’s no tomorrow if you lose game six too. Gotta win three...i am glad Joe is charge.

  • fb_avatar

    I like this lineup. I'm a huge Albert A fan and think that he is improving and maturing every game and we are likely seeing our everyday CF next year.
    Except for Zobrist, everyone is 28 and younger, and still learning. This is why I'm so excited about this team win or lose tonight. I really do think we can win tonight. We hit 3 HRs last night--now we just have to get some runners on before the boppers come out, and everyone can hit one out too.
    This will be fun!!

  • outside of winning, nothing really changed last night. cubs hit a few HR's to score their runs. Dodgers took their walks and threatened. just didnt score enough to win. we need to get hits and work walks and score more runs then we have been to win

  • Look at the the batting averages in the dodgers line up they're all hitting .250 +

  • In reply to bolla:

    They’re good.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to bolla:

    Check out the Sto's batting averages.. Now that's impressive.

  • The Dodgers simply have the better gameplan. They KNOW that the Cubs bullpen is weak so they have gone into each game with the intent to take a LOT of pitches to get into the BP early. Q will likely be between 25-30 pitches before he gets out of the 1st inning. Looks like yet ANOTHER 4-5 inning start for the Cubs.

    The good news is that the Dodgers scored first for the first time in the series. Perhaps that will throw them off. : )

  • 1-0? I suspect Jansen will be warming up in the second.

  • That Kervball is unfair.

  • I think the Cubs biggest mistake this year is trading away Szczur’s bats.

  • In reply to Stubbs:

    Another mistake is thinking Schwarber could take the place of Fowler.
    I like the Schwarb but because there is no room for him to catch,
    play 1st base or possibly 3rd base, I feel he is not a good fit for the Cubbies. An American League team in need of a first baseman or a designated hitter would be a much better fit.

  • Not our year ladies and gents. There’s always next year.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Stubbs:

    Never have I seen a "fan" of a team rejoice so much over his "team" getting beat.

  • Why is team in quotes? Are the Cubs not a team? I get that you can question my fandom - you’re welcome to your opinion - by why are you questioning the Cubs as a team?

  • Is it ok if he says it's not our year now?

  • In reply to Lildude:

    60's response wasn't based on that one comment. There is no shame in fighting and losing, but there is dishonor in giving up. If you quit consistently enough, eventually you'll be correct. I guess it doesn't matter that you were wrong dozens of times before. It reminds me of the boy who cried "wolf". If he does it consistently enough, he will eventually be right, and to revel in his glory at the expense of his community rubs some the wrong way.

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    How is saying it’s not our year reveling in the losing? Just because I see flaws where others see puppies and rainbows doesn’t mean I want them to lose. I’m a fan. I get discouraged, but I can’t possibly “quit”. There’s nothing to quit, unless I guess I change allegiances, which will never happen. I don’t influence the outcome whatsoever. I just offer a counterpoint to the eternal optimists who chose to ignore things like bullpen issues or the weak 2nd half schedule. I thought Washington would beat them. I was wrong, but I still think Washington is the better team, 5 game sample aside. The Dodgers were the better team all year. As were a number of teams like the Yankees, Houston, Cleveland, Arizona, etc. Acknowledging that doesn’t equate to quitting as a fan, it’s pointing out some significant opportunities and the step back that this team has taken since last year relative to the league. Managing expectations keeps me sane on a night like this, when the inevitable eventually arrives on our doorstep.

  • In reply to Stubbs:

    C'mon, Stubbs. I'm not getting into a pissing contest. Look at your comments from the 2016 NLDS, the 2016 NLCS, the 2016 WS, the 2017 regular season, the 2017 NLDS, and pretty much every game thread I've ever read. You quit. Plain and simple, no debate necessary.

    If you predict failure often enough you will eventually be right. You just seem to be taking the "I told you so" a little too far for someone who has such a horrible record of prognastication.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Lildude:

    You must not read this site too often this guy gets his kick by coming on here and pretending to be a cub fan while making fun on the cubs and the cub fans. Sorry but the guy's act is getting old.

  • Never once made fun of anyone. Take your sour grapes and go home dude.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Lildude:

    You must not read this site very often. He loves when the cubs get beat and lets everyone know about it on here. Constructive criticism yet love it but ridicule of the cubs and their fans on here gets old.

  • Bit of character smearing here bud. I don’t make fun of anyone. Never said I love losing. You’re unhappy with the outcome, as am I. But I’m not surprised. Sorry if that offends your sensibilities.

  • What's your story? You seem like a very unhappy person. I've never seen you post a single comment that isn't a critical of what someone else has written. "60yearoldyellsgetoffmylawn" seems more apt.

  • In reply to Cubswin09:

    Everyone,
    I know right now sucks.
    Please keep it civil. Please do not continue this comment thread.
    Down this path lies madness.

  • fb_avatar

    I wonder what it would take to get Christian Yelich from the Marlins.

  • Thanks for nothing Quintana. Biggest game of the year and you can’t even give your team a chance. It’s amazing how much talent the Cubs gave up for this mediocre middle of the rotation pitcher. Between Quintana and Wilson the Cubs front office got duped this trade season. I hope both players can improve and contribute more next season.

  • In reply to BigChi:

    I couldn't agree more, I was against both trades; but we can't undo the trades, both Wilson and Quintana are relatively young, and have talent, God-willing they'll figure it out next year.......

  • In reply to Treebeard:

    Quintana has had a number of outstanding outings, including in the post season. And his acquisition clearly sparked and propelled this team to the best 2nd half record in the NL. He’s far better than mediocre. Despite tonight, let’s not discount his value.

  • There's the season.I'm not watching them celebrate

  • fb_avatar

    They’re doing what we did last year. We’re being Cubbed.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Jonathan Friedman:

    Jonathan...what do you think it would take to get Yelich from the Marlins?

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Greg Simmons:

    I would trade Scwarber but Miami is in the NL. That’s a good question. What do you think?

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Jonathan Friedman:

    I read somewhere that the Marlins front office is high on a couple of the cubs young players. I suspect that one of them is probably Baez and maybe Almora since they're both have Florida connections.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Greg Simmons:

    Since I assume we are going to have Yelich play CF, I would trade Almora even though I would really enjoy seeing what he could do w a full season of ABs.

    I just can't see us trading Javy and you know the "ole you have to give something to get something" .

    If we still had Jeimer, I could see us trading Jeimer, Montgomery, and 2 lottery tickets for Yelich. Problem is we can't afford to trade Monty.

  • fb_avatar

    Looking forward to next years playoffs. Theo's got some work to do.

  • fb_avatar

    Oh well at least we didn't get swept. GO ASTRO's!!! Beat the 2nd highest payroll in MLB and than beat the No.1 highest payroll in the WS. Now that would be SWEET!!

  • Thanks for nothing Quintana. What an absolute horrific choke job, not even giving your team a chance. I can’t believe the amount of talent the Cubs gave up for Quintana and Wilson at the trade deadline for the amount of production they received. Hopefully things will be different next year, but I’m not holding my breath.

  • Our team plays baseball in the NLCS every October, we won a World Series. We have nothing to be angry about. Another fun year of baseball.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to TC154:

    TC..unless the front office has a monster off-season i believe that the cubs will drop another 10 games in the standings in 2018. Theo and staff are going to have their hands full trying to find 2 reliable starters and some relief arms,and they could also use a legit lead-off hitter.

  • In reply to Greg Simmons:

    I know you think that. I don’t. They need one TOR and it won’t be easy but they’ll get one. Bullpens are cyclical, they’ll find guys and the core is fine. In 14 years of being a GM Theo’s teams have played October baseball In 10 of them. Best in the business.

  • fb_avatar

    Q is a good pitcher. Look at what Kershaw has done in the postseason—are you going to judge him by those games? Let’s wait a few years and then see what we think.

  • fb_avatar

    It wouldn't shock me to see Lackey go high and inside to one of these dodger hitters that have been hanging over the plate ,

  • fb_avatar

    The upcoming cubs convention is going to be really interesting.

  • Milwaukee will legitimately challenge us next year. Arizona and Colorado aren’t going away. The Dodgers will only get better when they get Seager back. If you think Rizzo, KB, Contreras, Baez and Schwarber/Almora/Russell/etc. are a better core than Seager, Bellinger, Taylor, Turner, Puig...well I would not recommend you take any drug tests anytime soon. Their pitching staff is light years better. Washington has one more dominant year left with Eaton coming back. And then Hou, NYY, Cleveland will all be better than the NL teams. This might be our last NLCS for a while, unless we can coax Harper over and find fairy dust to fix our pen. Fun ride regardless. Thank you Theo, Jed, Maddon and the Ricketts.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Stubbs:

    We don't know for sure. Last year our core sure looked a lot better. A lot can change from season to season. But a couple things that I do think are important:
    1) The Dodgers have done a lot better with non-first-round picks than the Cubs have. Belanger was a 4th round pick. Verdugo -- their top position player prospect -- was a 2nd round pick. Willie Calhoun -- the key to the Darvish deal -- was a 4th round pick.
    2) The Dodgers (and the Naitonals) have been willing to invest resources in relievers. Had we spent money on a bullpen, it's possible we wouldn't have had to go out and get Chapman last year and Torres is still a Cub. Theo's idea of patching together a cheap bullpen has seemed a weakness this year, in part due to...
    3) The Cubs have been unable to develop pitching at all. That's putting them in an increasingly untenable situation against their top competitors.
    4) The Dodgers have been much more disciplined about their top prospects. They refused to part with their elite players and as a result "missed" on Quintana. They have to settle for having dry powder to chase an ace if one becomes available or plug Buehler and Verdugo into the lineup next year, making the team even younger and better. Oh, and they may get a ring, too.

    A lot can change from season to season. Two years ago the Royals high-batting-average team was the next untapped market inefficiency. Last year the Cubs were beginning a dynasty. Who knows for sure what will happen in 6 months. Having said that, it wouldn't surprise me if the Cubs need to take stock this winter and start a minor rebuild.

  • In reply to Mike Moody:

    Painful moves will be on the menu.

  • In reply to Stubbs:

    I was really surprised at some of the late-season bullpen moves, why did we keep Leathersich, Pierce Johnson, and Pena, just to drop them for nothing; especially when they had potential to be better than the guys we were using.......?

  • In reply to Stubbs:

    "Painful moves"? Schwarber and/or Happ may be moved for pitching, so that could be considered painful. I consider it roster construction. I think you may have seen the "minor rebuild" remark and gotten a little too excited. $70M in payroll to fill holes will save a lot of pain. I do believe the Cubs' core you listed is better than the Dodgers' core. Younger and more talented. Call me high.

    There is no rebuild necessary. Good grief.

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    I think trading Happ, Schwarber or Baez is painful.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Stubbs:

    This is the thing about this season that still confuses me. When you give up as much as the Cubs did for Quintana, you're essentially putting in big neon lights that you're playing for the next four post-seasons. If that's the case, you have to find a way to add Verlander. The obvious choice there would be Happ. Maybe he was offered and refused, who knows. But it's hard to see how a guy that Joe doesn't currently trust to get ABs in the playoffs is going to be more important over that span than Verlander.

    So, if they weren't willing to move them for Verlander this July I'm not sure why that would change in December.

  • In reply to Mike Moody:

    Gotta believe money/age combo was the issue. The Hayward contract is an albatross, restricting some of their future wiggle room with arbitration looming. And like Verlander, Lester is old and owed a ton. I wouldn’t be surprised if they looked at the league landscape at the deadline, decided they’d take what they could get with this year’s team, and reserve some powder for the offseason to continue the rotation youth movement. Q was picked up for the next three years more so than this one. I could see a Schwarber+Happ for Archer/Tehran or the like, or maybe even Baez if they believe Happ has some future at 2nd. Which will be painful. And necessary.

  • In reply to Mike Moody:

    Mike I hated losing Elroy at the time and still think it was a mistake. The reason, don't give up elite talent for anything. Yanks didn't for two years of control of gray. 'Steps didn' t for two years of verlander . The front office over estimated the cost of pitching this year and it cost them the only prospect that could have forced his way into the "core".

  • In reply to DLROBERTSON:

    No guarantee that Jimenez will even make the major leagues bottom line. We gave 4 players to Tampa Bay a few years back for Garza and only 1 has made it being Archer and he is just average at best.
    Problem most experts really are not experts at all. Q is a proven pitcher now and that is what you look at. Davis was a proven pitcher and Soler is still in the minor's.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to DLROBERTSON:

    I don't have a huge problem with the Cubs moving Jimenez but, if you do that, you have to get a legit ace for someone of his value. Quintana is a MOR guy. He always has been. They were hoping for a Jake-like transformation, I would imagine, but that's a bet you make with Scott FELDMAN!, not Eloy Jimenez. The real issue is they didn't get enough for their trade chip. And if you can't get an ace, see what you have in him. I go back to the original post. I think the Dodgers organization has done a lot right under Friedman and the Cubs could be an even stronger organization by copying what has worked there and mixing it with what has worked here.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to DLROBERTSON:

    And, yes, even though I didn't say it here at the time, I hated that trade from the moment it was made. It will always make me more sad than it should because debating the merits of that deal was the last conversation I had with John.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Mike Moody:

    Plus if Joe is not going to even use Wilson at all, should have insisted on Verlander even if we had to add more and not take Wilson from Detroit. Could have gotten bullpen help somewhere else.

    Unfortunately though even w Verlander, we still probably wouldn't have beaten the dodgers w this offense.

    The big mistake was not adding a JD Martinez type at the deadline on the cheap that many of us were yelling and praying for. Would have provided real protection in the middle of the lineup along w lengthening the lineup which ended up being our downfall in this series along w the pig pen show.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Jim Odirakallumkal:

    In fairness, I don't think anyone foresaw just how awful Wilson was going to be. But I would compare it to the Nationals who took on real salary to turn their bullpen into a strength instead of the Cubs trying to nip at the edges with a cost controlled guy.

  • In reply to Stubbs:

    If Schwarber goes and they somehow fleece a team into getting a top SP for a career .200 hitter, I'd say it's painful for the other team.

  • In reply to INSaluki:

    Let’s not forget Rizzo’s 2013. Good young players often face adversity. He’s not a lost cause by any stretch.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Mike Moody:

    Three straight NLCS appearances and a WS win. I'd say Theo and company know what they're doing.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to John Winter:

    They're great. I mean great, great. But next year the Dodgers may well be in the same position. Does that mean that Andrew and company know what they're doing and we should dismiss what Theo has done right? They're human. They're a combination of good and bad. We all are. To say that their successes mean they can't make a mistake isn't fair to anyone, IMO.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Mike Moody:

    That is fair. I just only saw one side of the story in your post, and wanted to voice the other.

  • In reply to Mike Moody:

    This all sounds like piling on to a team when they are down. Anyone who thinks the Nationals or Dodgers are light years ahead of us simply doesn't understand baseball very well. Let's get a few things straight before attempting a new rebuild of the Cubs:
    1) The Dodgers are an excellent team that is really rolling right now. You know, kind of like the Giants, Royals, Cubs last year. There is no shame in losing to them, they were the better team this year. But losing to them doesn't diminish the accomplishments of this Cubs tearm, which are huge.
    2) The Cubs are 2-time division champs, 3 straight years in the playoffs, 3 straight NLCS visits. This team is good. Very good. And one of the youngest cores in the entire league. They will be good, very good for years to come.
    3) See 2) above. They have had 3 of the longest seasons in their history, back-to-back-to-back. They were a little flat in the postseason this year, I think, due to running a bit low in the tank. They had to come back from 5 games down at the all-star break to winning the division by 6 games. I think that took a lot out of them. Look at previous WS champions. The next year shows the toll that the previous season played on them. The Cubs have had 3 straight such years, to be honest.

    This is not to say that there aren't areas that need to be addressed, just to say now that they are no longer at the same level as the Nationals, Dodgers, Astros, "Flavor-of-the-year" is ludicrous.

    The needs are probably BP and a front line starter, by the way. Don't expect to see many changes to the starting position players. Because they have an excellent core there. I can see maybe one of the guys (maybe two) being used in a trade to get a primo starter, for example, but I doubt it. They can get a TOR starter in the free agency market this off season I think.

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    In reply to Stubbs:

    Taylor is a journeyman, you don't know what he will do next year. Bellinger who I thought would be a stud during the draft talks years ago has still just had 1 year and Puig like Baez is Heckyl n Jeckyl.

    Pitching I will give you as they are deep, young, and loaded. They didn't even have Urias and Seager and whooped us.

    Rizzo/KB/Contreras > Seager/Turner/Grandal or whomever u want to insert not listed above.

  • Greg seems to be the only one here enjoying himself tonight. Now why would that be?

  • Welcome back Kris! Has any team scored EVERY run in a 5 game series via HR?! Surely this has to be a record.

  • Despite this series, it's been another good year of Baseball, despite some ups and downs. We undoubtedly have a lot of tough decisions to make regarding our starters and relief core. It will be an interesting off season for sure. We just ran into an exceptionally "hot" Dodgers team. Can't wait for February.

  • They had a good year, but I agree we’re behind the Dodgers and maybe Yankees in terms of future power. Who is their pitching target this off season?

  • If the Bryant, Rizzo, Zobrist, & sol on were hitting like they can, and we played some of the players sitting on the bench, the Cubs would be right in this series even with our lousy pitching. We need to start thinking hitting again and forget about swinging for the fences, and trade for some good pitching. We could win the WS again next year..

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    ok, we’re all bummed about how bad the Cubs have been this postseason. They just said on TV that the 8th place hitters have not had ONE hit this postseason. The Dodgers pitched, hit and fielded better than we did. Completely outplayed—-here in 2017. We have no idea what’s going to happen next year. Don’t we believe in this FO. They’re our core also. I think being swept by the Mets propelled us in 2016 and maybe the same thing will happen next year.
    Let’s applaud this team for all the joy they gave us this year—especially in the 2nd half.
    Go Cubs!!

  • NLCS 3 years in a row and 1 world series ring. This is still a very young team overall. I am really excited about this team. I'll be watching the off season moves with great interest and can't wait to attend spring training next year.

  • All the Cubs need to do is add a few arms to the pen,add a starter and get a legit lead off hitter. I know billy Hamilton doesn't get on base enough but that's the type of catalyst the Cubs need leading off his speed is a game changer

  • Another wonderful year. Crushing the Cards and Brewers in September was big fun. The Nats series was excruciating and exhilarating, one of the best playoff series of all time, capped with an amazing GM5 we can relish all winter. Same with last nights game.

    Im gonna avoid making grand pronouncements about the team going forward, except to say I’m glad we got the best FO in baseball. As far as I’m concerned it’s all good, baby!

    Enjoy the off season.

  • I'm disappointed, but I sincerely appreciate getting back to the NLCS for the 3rd straight year. I'm actually looking forward to the upcoming changes. I hope they pick up a LEGIT lead off man and another quality starter. I won't worry too much about the BP until mid-season, except a closer of course.

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