Game Post 8/29


Series preview is here.


Wednesday: 1:30 pm CT on MLB Network/NBC Sports Chicago/670AM



1. Amed Rosario (R) SS
2. Jeff McNeil (L) 2B
3. Austin Jackson (R) CF
4. Jay Bruce (L) 1B
6. Todd Frazier (R) 3B
7. Brandon Nimmo (L) RF
9. Jason Vargas (L) P
1. Kyle Schwarber (L) LF
3. Ben Zobrist (S) 2B
4. Anthony Rizzo (L) 1B
5. David Bote (R) SS
7. Tommy La Stella (L) 3B
8. Alec Mills (R) P
9. Ian Happ (S) RF
Bullpen Usage
Baseball press didn't update yesterday's pitcher usage with the suspended game so here are the box scores from game 2.

Lineups and Bullpen Usage via Baseball Press.

Opposing pitcher

Scouting Report from Brooks Baseball.

Jason VargasHis sinker has below average velo and results in somewhat more flyballs compared to other pitchers' sinkers. His change has slight armside fade. His fourseam fastball comes in below hitting speed. His curve generates more whiffs/swing compared to other pitchers' curves, results in more flyballs compared to other pitchers' curves, has slight glove-side movement and has slightly below average velo. 
Sam's Note: He's not deGrom or Thor. Let's just be elated at that.
Final Thoughts: A mini-recap first for everyone. The Cubs and Mets resumed their 1-1 10th inning tie at noon today. Neither side scored in the 10th inning, but Chicago walked it off in the 11th. Javy Baez walked and moved to third when reliever Paul Sewald airmailed a throw to first when Victor Caratini bunted. Ben Zobrist would single with the bases loaded to end the game. For the final game of the series the Cubs got creative with the lineup. David Bote plays shortstop while Baez and Daniel Murphy get the game off. Alec Mills was good against the Reds and gets another look today. Jason Vargas is really, really, bad.



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  • Baez is clearly the team MVP (and league MVP in my book). He is second in the league in SLG and WAR, and first in RBI. Zobrist has may be the team's second-best player this year. He leads the NL in BA. It was cool to see those two have the key plays in the game this morning.

  • My little league grandson could have hit that pitch out

  • Interesting to see Rene Rivera claimed by Braves. Perhaps a block to prevent from him going to the Cubs.

  • In reply to stv711:

    still can't believe nobody claimed Murphy to block him

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    I can't see us scoring just 1 run. We have been hitting and we'll have more than 4 when the day is done.

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    Yes Vergas has 6.68 ERA.

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    Alright alright, we played around w Mr. Vargas for 4 innings. Time to get him out of there Offense. Lets put a rally together and a crooked number.

    Wake these fans up !

  • In reply to Jim Odirakallumkal:

    I like how we matchup with Vargas but it's hard to string hits together with this double header lineup. We're getting nothing from la Stella, bote and why on earth is schwarber lead in off again and against a lefty of all pitchers. La Stella better start hitting soon he doesn't have a lot of value when he's hitting below .270

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    In reply to kkhiavi:

    We are in need of a momentum a changer like a bloop n a blast or walk n a blast

    We have some solid PHs on the bench when necessary w this lineup.

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    That was our chance, but even Zobrist took a terrible swing at a low and outside changeup. Normally he goes w the pitch but he tried to do something big n pull and we all know what typically happens when you try to do too much. 6-4-3 DP

    After Almora reaching, I felt as if we were going to get Vargas out of there.

  • In reply to Jim Odirakallumkal:

    Disappointing inning I've been wondering if we're more vulnerable to left handed starters versus right handed pitchers this season. Baez is clearly a weapon, Almora is a lot better vs. lefties then righties, Contreras is great against lefties but just hasn't been as productive at the plate this year in general. Outside of that we have a ton of lefty hitters/switch hitters that are stronger against right handed pitching then left handed pitching. Kris Bryant's return would make a big difference against LHP but that's if he returns healthy and in decent form

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    In reply to kkhiavi:

    I been thinking the same thing. Luckily there are not many teams w a slew of LH starters ( other then Redsox) we may face in the playoffs. Yes Kershaw, Wood, and Hill from the Dodgers, but they might not even make the playoffs.

    Backs have Corbin, but the Cards, Brew, Braves, and Phillies don't have much in the form of dominant LH starters.

    You are right in the fact that KB will be a huge factor in us dominating LH starters in the post season.

  • In reply to Jim Odirakallumkal:

    exactly that's why a potential playoff series against the dodgers makes me nervous they have the lefties to match up with zobrist, happ, rizzo, murphy, schwarber, heyward, etc.

    Murphys presence and Bote's emergence has almost made me forget about KB at times but I still say his successful return may play a huge part in how far we go. Even KB at 85% of what he typically does makes a big difference this lineup and I also think that we can use his presence as an impact right handed bat we're getting a little left handed here recently with Murphy's addition

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    In reply to kkhiavi:

    Its funny, because for as long as I been a Cubs fan the Cubs have always been primarily right handed and I always wondered why we never had any lefties. From the Sandberg/Dawson/Dunston/Hill/Walton Era days ( although Grace was a great lefty) to the Sosa/Hill/Ramirez/Lee/Soriano/DeRosa days. Even to the fact that we were convinced Milton Bradley was the answer !

    Now, we are looking like a dominate LH team. All it took was about 30 years.

  • In reply to Jim Odirakallumkal:

    Lol I know it's one of my favorite aspects of Theo's management of the lineup. I remember that Lou piniella cubs squad could never handle the type of elite RHP that you face in the playoffs and I've always been but I'm now a huge believer in the power of having not only a talented lineup but a well balanced lineup with strong hitters from both sides as well as a good mix of disciplined hitters, contact hitters, power hitters, etc.

  • Gotta get to the mets pen, that's the cubs best chance.The mets pen sucks, vargas was pitching solid heading into this start.

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    Well, we're in their pen and we're not doing anything. We had that chance in the first and maybe if we had scored a run or two the game might be different, but that's the game.
    As someone said above, if Tommy doesn't start hitting it will definitely be Bote on the roster in Oct.

  • In reply to Jonathan Friedman:

    Agreed La stella is doing well pinch hitting but I hate seeing him in the starting lineup. He's always been a fan favorite but that OPS is getting ugly and his poor baserunning and defense aren't helping his case. I think Bote should pretty much already get his postseason spot regardless of what happens the rest of the year

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    Well I guess we felt that we could give this game away

  • Man kintlzer sucks he's the right handed justin wilson(post '17 deadline wilson) .Every time he comes in the game bad things happen

    and rosario can't strike people out

  • In reply to bolla:

    Yeah he's honestly the guy in the pen that I trust the least right now. That 5 million dollar player option for next year is scary I don't even care if his command sharpens up this isn't a piece that I want for my bullpen moving forward this guys too reliant on precise command within the strike zone. Yeah sometimes those types of guys get fortunate and have decent regular season numbers but I feel like I can't trust this type of pitcher in the playoffs whether he's in his best form or not

  • In reply to kkhiavi:

    5 million isnt that bad, that can be traded. A team looking for bullpen help can take on a 1 year 5 mil easily.So hopefully he's gone after this season

  • In reply to bolla:

    I hope so I think if he can rebound then that contract is tradeable but if he just stinks with the cubs then it may not be that easy. Hopefully he just opts out too but I don't know if that's logical from his perspective

  • In reply to bolla:

    He's not pitching that good. He's a right handed Duensing. To think the Cubs have Duensing and Kintlzer sign for $8.5 next year is not good.

  • In reply to 2016 Cubs:

    That was $8.5M. Not to mention the $25.5M owed to Chatwood.

  • In reply to 2016 Cubs:

    Exactly Theo is a hall of fame GM and he runs this team better than I or anybody else can ever dream of running an organization but if you're gonna invest set up man to close to set up man type of money I'd rather get more guys with swing and miss type of stuff not these 2 journeyman soft tossers. Hopefully Kinztler at least works his way back towards being solid but it seems like a lot of new acquisition pitchers struggle once they join the cubs outside of Hamels.

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    In reply to bolla:

    Thats why along w Hamels, a veteran defensive catcher was a strike out LH was on my deadline wish list.

  • It will be interesting to see who makes our playoff roster in the pen, assuming of course we make it. We will have Lester, Hamels, Hendricks & Q for starters. Morrow (hopefully), Strop, Cishek, Edwards, Chavez from the right side and Wilson and Montgomery as lefties. Last spot would come down to Kintzler (R), DeLaRosa (L) or Rosario (L). I would have said Kintzler a few weeks ago, but if they had to choose today, probably one of the lefties. It will be interesting over the last month to see who steps up.

  • In reply to Cubpack:

    Fangraphs has the Cubs odds at making the playoffs at 99.5%.

    I could see Maddon wanting 9 bullpen arms for the playoffs.

  • I hope we can get decent return for Russell and Schwarber in the offseason. Those are two guys that need to go.

  • Only bright spot from this one is Bote looks pretty good defensively, made some nice pickups.
    Let’s go to Atlanta.

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    Time to empty the bench and get Rizzo a couple innings off heading into this road trip.

    Schwarbenator leading off vs a lefty was just awful wishful dreaming

  • Cubs are 21st in 1st inning runs allowed and the teams below us are not playoff teams. The teams that have allowed the least amount of 1st inning runs are all in the playoff hunt.

    We gotta get better to start games.

  • In reply to rbrucato:

    Definitely true about our season as a whole but at least for this one I give them a mulligan because Mills isn't really gonna be a part of our rotation moving forward. The other guys have been getting better recently so hopefully we've at least learned that Mills isn't an ideal option as a starter moving forward. Glad to see Montgomery come back relatively quickly I know that he's not a big name star nationally but I really value what he brings to this team out of the rotation and bullpen

  • In reply to kkhiavi:

    Before Mills start

    #Cubs starting pitching: 1.79 ERA over last 12 games

  • In reply to WaitUntilNextYear:

    Agreed they've been really good since they got hamels and after Lester rebounded from his recent slump. Hendricks is pitching well and Q has been decent not great lately at least. Just gotta keep it going and get that 5th starter shored up but the rotation is clearly trending up since we acquired hamels

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    Here comes a 9 run homer !

    Least James Norwood got an inning in

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    Good news about the Cubs crapping the bed, I got to watch most of a great game between the Astros n A's.

    A's just lost their 2nd series since Mid june ( 21 series) thanks to a walk off homer run by Tyler White who has a great nickname....." The great white shark"

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    Finally Victor gets his first homer of the season !!

    Got to feel great for him to get that monkey off his back.

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