Myles Monday Meltdown: Monty, Lester, and a Big Week Ahead

I had the opportunity to either see Deadpool 2 or Ocean's 8 yesterday afternoon. My first choice was the former, but I let my fiancee pick and so we saw latter. I don't want to give anything away, but here was my takeaway:

Three Cheers for the Freaking Weekend:
Hey, I'll drink to that! The Cubs are on somewhat of a roll in case you haven't been paying attention. Most recently, they wrapped up their homestand with a weekend series win against the (now) forth place Pirates. If you're keeping track at home, that's now their fifth consecutive series win in a row. That includes a 4-game sweep of the poopy Mets. Now, all of a sudden, the Cubs are climbing back into that "best team in baseball" discussion. ESPN's weekly power rankings have the Cubs slotted 4th in all of baseball (and 1st in the NL) after the 10th week of baseball.

The Full Monty
All Mike Montgomery has done since joining the starting rotation is produce. Over three starts so far he's gone 17.2 IP, put up a 1.02 ERA, limited his opponents to a .175 AVG, and put up a solid 5.09 K/9. What happens when Darvish returns is uncertain. But for now the dude is doing an amazing job at filling the void.

What about Jonny Lestaaaaa?
In his last 5 starts, Jon Lester has managed to pitch at least 6 innings. But that's not what's most impressive. What's most impressive are the results that have accompanied those starts. This year, Lester ranks 9th among all MLB starters in BABIP, 6th in ERA (2.22), an 7th in LOB% (84.8%). Now you may think that I'm cherry-picking stats to fit my narrative of "2018 Lester being good." And you're right. That's totally what I did. In fact, it's not all roses as Lester's FIP (3.99) is the 50th best in all of baseball and raises some eyebrows. But still, the results are there. And Lester continues to mold his game to fit the age of his arm.

Big week:
A big week indeed. The Cubs will face not one, but two NL Central rivals this week. First up are the first place Brewers who the Cubs trail by just two games in the win column. Milwaukee has struggled just a bit after their hot start going just 4-6 over their last 10 games. The Cubs will then travel to St. Louis after their game on Wednesday for a 3-game weekend series against the third place Cardinals who trail the Cubs by just two games. Basically, a lot can happen in the standings this week. And I for one am excited to see a renewed Cubs offense, a steady starting rotation, and a badass bullpen face two NL foes. Let's gooooooo.

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    My prediction when Darvish gets back is that Chatwood will be put on the DL for "left arm (non-throwing) soreness" or something equally vague. Some columnist will insist that Chatwood has heroically been pitching through the injury but Darvish's return will make it possible for him to finally receive the treatment he deserves.

    Unethical? Probably. Against the CBA? Probably. But we are talking W-L here.

  • The winner of the Cubs-Brewers series will hold first place in the NLC. It's still early and it's not a "must win" series, but it would be great to see the Cubs take charge of the division and then knock the Cards back a game or two in the standings.

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    In reply to Cliff1969:

    To me the series means more to the Brewers than it does the Cubs. I think the Cubs have a better roster at this point. This means they will be able to mount a comeback better than the Brewers. And the Brewers have been absolutely inept against the Cubs this year. If they come out of the series having only won 1-2 games against the team in 2nd place in the division that doesn't bode well for them for the year.

  • In reply to Joel Mayer:

    I agree, although there's enough season left for either team to recover from a bad series. Still, I think the Brewers have been overachieving and a "correction" is due!

  • In reply to Joel Mayer:

    Nelson will be back, though his effectiveness is a question mark. If the Brewers hang around, they may pull the trigger on a quality SP. I'd rather bury them so that is not an option.

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