Game Post 4/11


Series Preview is here.


Thursday: 6:35 PM CT on MLB Network/NBC Sports Chicago/670AM



1. Adam Frazier (L) 2B
2. Starling Marte (R) CF
4. Josh Bell (S) 1B
5. Jung Ho Kang (R) 3B
6. Melky Cabrera (S) RF
7. Pablo Reyes (R) LF
8. Erik Gonzalez (R) SS
9. Joe Musgrove (R) P
1. Ben Zobrist (S) RF
2. Kris Bryant (R) 3B
3. Anthony Rizzo (L) 1B
4. Javier Baez (R) SS
5. Kyle Schwarber (L) LF
6. Jason Heyward (L) CF
7. Daniel Descalso (L) 2B
9. Jose Quintana (R) P
Bullpen Usage

Lineups and Bullpen Usage via Baseball Press.

Opposing pitcher

Scouting Reports from Brooks Baseball.

Joe Musgrove: Joe Musgrove has thrown 4,618 pitches that have been tracked by the PITCHf/x system between 2016 and 2019, including pitches thrown in the MLB Regular Season, the MLB Postseason and Spring Training. In 2019, he has relied primarily on his Fourseam Fastball (91mph) and Slider (83mph), also mixing in a Change (85mph), Sinker (91mph) and Curve (82mph). He also rarely throws a Cutter (86mph).

His fourseam fastball is basically never swung at and missed compared to other pitchers' fourseamers, has much less armside movement than typical, has some natural sinking action and has slightly below average velo. His slider generates an extremely high number of swings & misses compared to other pitchers' sliders, sweeps across the zone, is an extreme flyball pitch compared to other pitchers' sliders and has some two-plane movement. His change has surprising cut action, results in somewhat more flyballs compared to other pitchers' changeups and has some natural sink to it. His sinker generates an extremely high number of swings & misses compared to other pitchers' sinkers, is an extreme flyball pitch compared to other pitchers' sinkers, has surprisingly little armside run and has some natural sinking action. His curve is basically never swung at and missed compared to other pitchers' curves, is much harder than usual, results in more flyballs compared to other pitchers' curves and has a sharp downward bite. His cutter is basically never swung at and missed compared to other pitchers' cutters, has extreme cut action, is an extreme flyball pitch compared to other pitchers' cutters, has slightly below average velo and has some natural sink.

Sean's Note: Musgrove was solid in his first season in Pittsburgh, after being part of the Gerrit Cole trade. His walk rate is among the best in baseball just 4% last season. So far he hasn't allowed a run in 9.0 innings pitched in 2019. Left handed hitters fare much better against him than righties.

Final Thoughts: With the threat of thunderstorms late, the Cubs and MLB moved first pitch up to 6:35 PM. Jose Quintana got shelled in his first start of 2019 in Milwaukee. Albert Almora gets a day off amidst slow start at the plate. The cold weather seems to have hampered the Cubs bats last night. Hopefully, they are back to form Thursday night.


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  • What a drastic change in weather. We're looking at 70° and a 30+ MPH jet stream blowing out to left. Musgrove seems to attack the zone with less than overpowering stuff, so if anyone wants to predict multiple dingers and a football score, be my guest.

    Could get a thunderstorm in the later innings. To paraphrase an infamous Chicago saying: score early. Score often.

    Go Cubs!

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    My iPhone says 57 degrees.

  • In reply to Cubs09:

    Is there someone nearby with an Android?

    I'll show myself out...

  • In reply to Cliff1969:

    I'm about 30 miles SE of Wrigley. My trusty, old-fashioned thermometer reads 63°. There are two systems that will interact within the next few hours: the current southern blow that will make temps continue to rise for the next couple hours, then a cold front from the NW that will arrive around 9pm and could cause havoc. The winds, at the moment, aren't that strong, but are supposed to escalate soon.

    "You don't need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows."

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    I can't help myself, and I recently explained the reason why this gets under my skin. With apologies to Mr. Dylan:

    "I don't need an iPhone to know which way the wind blows."

    We all have something to offer this site. If you continue to take cheap shots at another individual you have never met in person, you should really reconsider your purpose for engaging in online discussions.

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    Lost in Translation. I didn’t mean any offense at all. I was excited when I saw your post, checked my iPhone, and posted the result.

  • In reply to Cubs09:

    I’m sorry. I can be brusk. It gets me in trouble.

  • In reply to Cubs09:

    Cool, man. I'll take you at your word. I'll admit I sometimes misread individual posts with a commenting history in mind. My apologies.

    I do respect you, and have deferred to your Bay-area expertise over the years. When we needed local or inside info, I said to talk to 09.

    We've had our differences. I call a truce, and I will say this is my fault for bringing it up. I shouldn't have done that.

    Go Cubs!

  • I predict an awakened Cubs offense tonight. Unfortunately, we might also see an invigorated Pirates offense, too! Time for an impressive start, Jose. I mean a GOOD impression.

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    My wife's birthday is today and the least I can give her is a win. We went to dinner and back in time for the first pitch--that's an understanding wife.
    This would be a big boost to the club if Q can pitch well. By well I'm looking for 6 or 7 innings and limit the bullpen. Boy, that last pitch looked low, but Caratini got the call.
    Now, let's score some runs.

  • fb_avatar

    My brother put a notice on FB that Scott Sanderson died today. He played 19 years and pitched for the Cubs from 1984-89. He was only
    62. That's a shame.

  • In reply to Jonathan Friedman:

    That is indeed sad news. I recall Sanderson more as a baseball card I owned as a little kid than his playing career, but he did have a long productive career in the big leagues.

  • In reply to Mike Banghart:

    He was pretty steady, solid.....had one game for the Cubs where he came in in relief (was considered a starter always) around the 8th inning of a tie game and threw 8 shutout innings. Unsure, but think the Cubs eventually won in the 17th and he wasn’t the pitcher of record.

  • In reply to Wickdipper:

    Yeah I didn't want to focus too much on his big league career at this moment, but I did take a glance at his baseball-reference page. Dude pitched 19 seasons in the big leagues. That isn't anything to sneeze at regardless of the numbers you put up (which seem steady, solid as you described).

  • Caratini is such a better receiver than Willy. Glad he's swinging it well but I haven't seen any improvement behind the plate for Willson...

  • After a hot start both Javy and especially Schwarber look bad at the plate. Schwarber's average is now sitting at .220 which is, sadly, just a little below his career average. Rizzo is off to his usual slow start and there are no concerns there, but with Bryant looking as if the issues from last year might still be lingering, and the knowledge that Heyward will come back to earth some, the Cubs will need both of those players hitting much better.

  • In reply to INSaluki:

    Descalso is another guy. Many were excited by his hot start. A career .240 hitter isn't going to hit .300, that's just reality. Now he's back to looking like...............well a .240 hitter. Funny how guys will seemingly always get closer and closer to their baseball card #'s with more and more at bats.

  • In reply to INSaluki:

    Kyle is officially at a point where I’m concerned about his development and for me it goes beyond the numbers. He’s been almost ineffective hitting breaking pitches (slider, curveball) throughout his career and cubs insiders analysis shows that the guy still has trouble with the curve. Here’s the link he’ll contribute but getting more concerned by the day that bolla was right all along and they should’ve traded him while his value was high.

  • In reply to kkhiavi:

    And now again looks foolish on the breaking pitches. I get that he’s not bad because of his on base skills and power but his market value was really high once upon a time. Some guy of us gave bolla way too much flack for his concern with this guy. Kyle just isn’t a very effective contact hitter at this point in time hope something clicks for him and he at least can hit .250-260

  • In reply to kkhiavi:

    I had a LOT of hope for him to start the season after watching him hit to the left side of the field with frequency, but man he looks so bad right now. I hope he can turn it around and even hit .250 because with his patience, he can get on base enough and drive in enough runs to be a serviceable OF.

  • In reply to INSaluki:

    Yup I hope so too I liked the overall approach going back to spring. This guy just goes ice cold when he slumps he’ll hit for power and get on base but then he’ll go weeks without barely getting a hit. Until he becomes a better contact hitter then he’ll always have barely more rbis then he runs like a Joey gallo, and he’ll never be a high end run producer. It’s getting to the point now where he’s getting in make or break territory the team has displayed a ton of confidence in him but we’re yet to see any progress really

  • In reply to kkhiavi:

    *home runs

  • In reply to kkhiavi:

    So how does he compare to Soler? Should the cubs have traded Soler for a one year rental? How do you know when to trade anyone? Second guessers usually get things accurate but how do you measure first guessers?

    Fans are the guessers, GM has to be first guesser and subject to those of us who know better from our computer screens. Win some,lose some , hopefully you win more than you lose.

  • In reply to stix:

    I get what you’re saying I personally haven’t been in favor of trading him over the years. In a way you can argue they wouldn’t have won a WS without him so it’s not like he hasn’t done big things for this franchise especially compared with some of the other players that were drafted around him like Aiken, kolek, Rodon, Nick Gordon, etc. I just had higher expectations for him as a contact hitter and run producer. I’d argue that the team probably regrets not moving him if he’s unable to get that avg into the .260+ range. Keep in mind he was once a top 10 overall prospect his outstanding minor league and college production suggested a hitter with higher upside overall.

  • Looks as if they need ROBOUMP on the low pitches tonight. At least he’s consistent but terrible on his calls below the zone.

  • I'm outside on the radio. It has just been described to me, through fourteen minutes of words, how amazing the El Mago defensive attempt was.

    I wish I could have seen that.

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    His athleticism is OFF the charts. At the same time, he had no shot at the runner and it was probably an ill advised throw. But you simply will not take that "magic" out of him.

  • In reply to INSaluki:


  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    That description runs through my mind. I don't have to reiterate my belief that El Mago is the most talented baseball player I have ever seen.

    Then I see the schedule, and see that the Southern California/ Los Angeles/ San Bernardino/ Anaheim/ Hollywood-Market Angels are coming to town , and we may see (barring injury) a player of even greater abilities.

    We, as baseball fans, need to appreciate the talent that is Mike Trout. Blasphemy be damned, he is probably better than Babe Ruth. Dude is good, and hopefully healthy enough to compete against us. I hope he is, and will honestly look forward to seeing how Javy reacts to the fact that he is not, for the first time in a very long time, the best player on the field.

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    Once again I have to disagree with you. Javy does SO MANY things incredibly well but he simply has not made enough strides in plate discipline, acknowledgement of critical situations (like men on 3rd base with less than 2 outs, choking up on the bat, etc) and still strikes out way too much. In key situations, I can easily name 10,20 or more players I'd rather have in the batter's box than Javy.

  • In reply to INSaluki:

    Right now I am enjoying a Cubs lead, and hopefully a W. I will look forward to this debate. But for now, just win!

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    The more accurate comparison is Mike Trout to Mickey Mantle. Saw something on the MLB network this offseason showing their total stats comparisons up to Trout’s current age. They’re basically the same player. I’m too young to have ever seen the Mick play, but our opportunity to see Mike Trout play today basically let’s us know exactly what it would be like the see Mantle back on the day.

  • In reply to Cubber Lang:

    Compare their age 19 through 26 seasons. It’s pretty crazy...

  • In reply to Cubber Lang:

    Dude, look at those BB Ref pages of HOF's from ages 18-23. Mantle, Robinson, Mays. It is glorious to a baseball fan, and when I do, I get so lost in my cozy zone I have no interest in debate. That is my heaven. :)

    You have been a consistent anchor to my El Mago steamship. I curse you, and then realize this is what is needed to keep everyone on course. One of these days Javy will continue on his natural, and at this point verifiable, progression. He could possibly cure cancer and secure world peace. I could recognize that talent, and detail every step of progression along the way to share with my online friends, and predict that all of the national stooges who are, well, national stooges are actually, well, stooges, got him all wrong.

    Javy's my boy. I have put more effort and energy into scouting and studying him than I have ever put into any other player in my life. And I have said, for the last SEVEN YEARS!!!, that Javier Baez will be an MVP.

    I appreciate the criticism, Cubber. We've had many debates about the nuances of the playing of baseball, and these discussions keep me on my toes. I stand by my boy, and still make the offer to debate any of the doubters who insist that Javy is due for regression. He's not, he actually has another gear, and I'll risk my baseball cred against anyone who will risk theirs to tell me why.

  • In reply to Cubber Lang:

    Since we're on a rain delay before our inevitable victory, I'm spending more time thinking of what you said.

    Mickey Mantle is probably my second-favorite player ever behind Greg Maddux. I'm too young to have seen him play live, but I have enough interest to realize that he, very possibly, could have been the best player ever. It's a shame that his personal demons and self-destructive behavior, along with bad knees, kept him from fulfilling his ultimate hieghts.

    That is a good point you bring up, Cubber. I love my boy Javy, but don't see him as a Hall-of-Famer. He got his ML career started too late. Look at the Hall-of-Famers, most started at 18, 19 years old. Most had 100 HR's or 50 wins by age 25.

    Thanks for bringing up that topic. I've had bouts of depression in my life, and when I do, I drown myself in those old stats and memories. That has always been my safe, happy place.

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    Oh man, that's a lot of good stuff! And yes, reading through stats definitely does something therapeutic for me. Yeah, no doubt that Mantle and Trout (if he keeps being Mike Trout) are in that upper class level of Hall of Fame status. There's a nice group of them for sure. Another I can think of from the previous generation was Barry Bonds, and it's a shame about the steroid stuff, because he didn't even need it. He was also one of the best to play this game, and we got to see that. He's also got all the hall of fame guys listed as similar careers.

    Man, the Javy stuff... He's my favorite Cub, behind Rizzo anyway. He's the most exciting athlete I can remember happen to Chicago since either Devin Hester or Derek Rose, although Rose's peak was kinda short. But it's just always so exciting to watch Javy play, just like every time Hester was back to receive a punt! It just drives me nuts that he shows he's got all the tools, but he never calms down in the box and just try to do what the moment calls for. Man if he gets back on track hitting the ball up the middle and opposite way, watch out! But its moments like where he threw the bat at the ball, and it drove in a run. That was great, but I don't want him thinking he should be trying that all the time. I'm glad he's willing to do anything to help his team win, sometimes, I think it's just too much. I want Javy to be a Hall of Famer, I just am not so sure he will do what it takes while in the batters box to make it a reality. He does everything else right, that's for sure.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to BarleyPop:

    Not to be snark. Maybe you don't appreciate him, but I certainly due as well as my circle of friends who actually know the game. I have been in "baseball love" w Trout since he first came up. I didn't even know about him in the minors, but that first few weeks, I knew he was special. Just the sound the ball makes off his bat ( same w Javy) and how ridiculous of a defender he was/is. His base running was off the chart. Honestly I thought we were going to see the first guy who would be a perennial 30-30 guy and 40-40 on above avg seasons and perhaps a monster 50-50 in his career.

    Like MJ, you could honestly give the MVP to Trout every year he's healthy. Don't get me wrong, I am a baseball purist and love to see players play their whole career in 1 color/town/team, but part of me wishes the most underpaid player ( as ridiculous as that sounds, its true when you compare the salaries of the elite because he's better then them) in baseball didn't sign that deal and would be on a playoff contender every year.

  • I don't care if Javy thinks the ball may have glanced off his shoe. YOU RUN, you don't leave anything to chance. That right there is why Javy is not an MVP type player. When there is a man on 3rd base and less than 2 outs, Javy is NOT someone I want up there. That very possibly just cost this team the desperately needed win.

  • Ok - now with the lead, let the skies open up and call it a game. I’ll take any win where the bullpen sits on their hands.

  • In reply to Senator Blutarski:

    If they call the game, does Q get a complete game shutout?

  • In reply to Treebeard:

    I believe credit for shutouts have to go 9 innings. Not 100% sure.

  • In reply to Treebeard:

    Kelly Crull

    If this game is called as is, Q gets credit for a shutout as well—@ckamka

  • In reply to HJW49:

    From what I hear, which is what I want to hear, is 10:00 = Play Ball!

  • In reply to HJW49:

    I like Kelly Crull... :o)

    Point is moot now. But she is right. If the game had ended, he pitched all of the official innings to that point. But Cishek looked good... until Marte & Cervelli. Got a little nervous.

  • In reply to Milk Stout:

    I like Kelly Crull as well.

    And W, baby!

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    Kelly is hot, But The W is the Bomb... Boom!

  • In reply to Milk Stout:

    She's OK, but she's no Katheryn Tappen.

  • In reply to Cliff1969:

    Who’s she?

  • Win

  • 12th game of the year to finally get a save.....we’ll take it!

  • 7 shutout innings from our #5, 2 more from the BP and a series win? I'll take it!

    The clock is ticking, or should be, on a few of these guys. Schwarbs, Almora, were drafted #1 for a reason, and this ain't it. Zagunis wants some playing time and he's not batting .220. Maybe when Happ is ready to come up, Almora can go to Iowa and learn to work a count. I'm willing to give KB little more time, but he's gotta come around, too. I'm afraid to think Heyward has finally found his stride, but we'll see. Gotta have more production from the OF.

  • I’m hearing Caratini hurt his hand. Might be broke.

  • In reply to Milk Stout:


  • In reply to Treebeard:

    Last at bat last night. He confirmed it in an interview after the game. Could be out a few weeks. He was in a groove, so that’s going to sting. Hopefully Willson gets it going.

  • In reply to Milk Stout:

    Just read that it could be 2 months. Dang.

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