Game Post 4/21

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Series preview is here.

Watch/Listen

Sunday: 1:20 PM CT on NBC Sports Chicago/670AM

Lineups

Diamondbacks

1. Jarrod Dyson (L) CF
2. Wilmer Flores (R) 1B
3. David Peralta (L) LF
4. Adam Jones (R) RF
5. Eduardo Escobar (S) 3B
6. Ketel Marte (S) 2B
7. Nick Ahmed (R) SS
8. Carson Kelly (R) C
9. Robbie Ray (L) P
Cubs
2. Kris Bryant (R) LF
3. Anthony Rizzo (L) 1B
4. Javier Baez (R) SS
6. David Bote (R) 3B
7. Ben Zobrist (S) 2B
9. Mark Zagunis (R) RF
Bullpen Usage
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Lineups and Bullpen Usage via Baseball Press.

Opposing pitcher

Scouting Reports from Brooks Baseball.

Robbie Ray: Robbie Ray has thrown 11,906 pitches that have been tracked by the PITCHf/x system between 2014 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 (93mph) and Slider (83mph), also mixing in a Curve (81mph). He also rarely throws a Sinker (93mph).

His fourseam fastball results in somewhat more flyballs compared to other pitchers' fourseamers, has slightly above average velo, has slightly less natural movement than typical and has some added backspin. His slider generates a high number of swings & misses compared to other pitchers' sliders and results in somewhat more groundballs compared to other pitchers' sliders. His curve generates fewer whiffs/swing compared to other pitchers' curves, is much harder than usual, has little depth, has primarily 12-6 movement and results in somewhat more flyballs compared to other pitchers' curves. His sinker (take this with a grain of salt because he's only thrown 18 of them in 2019) generates an extremely high number of swings & misses compared to other pitchers' sinkers, is an extreme flyball pitch compared to other pitchers' sinkers, has well above average velo, has less armside run than typical and has little sinking action compared to a true sinker.

Sean's Note: Ray had a bit of a down year in 2018 after his good 2017. He has allowed 14 runs in just 21.1 innings pitched in 2019. He walked hitters at pretty alarming 13.3% in 2018 and is even higher at 16.3% so far this year. He also misses a ton of bats with a 31% strike out rate in 2018. The key is to take advantage of the walks so the few hits he allows really hurt.

Final Thoughts: Happy Easter, Passover, or Sunday depending on how you observe. Tyler Chatwood gets the start, so I don't need to tell you how unpredictable he is. The Cubs are going with a heavy right-handed lineup against the lefty Ray. Albert Almora Jr., has struggled mightily against left-handers so far this year. The conditions at Wrigley are more hitter friendly then they have been the last two days.

Comments

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  • They called up Mills & sent Rosario down. So they’ll have him for more relief in case Walk... uh Chatwood has problems.

  • Beautiful day at Wrigley. Blue skies and a warm southern breeze blowing out to LF. The ball should carry today, so hopefully Chatwood will give up any bombs BEFORE he clogs the bases. Solo shots, baby!

    Chatwood will be limited to about 80 pitches max today, so in anticipation of heavy pen usage, Rosario was sent down today after throwing a couple frames yesterday. The fresh Alec Mills gets added to the cavalry, and may stick until Montgomery returns. I hear Monty will throw tomorrow in Tennessee, then possibly be ready to rejoin the big club vs. the Dodgers. Same for Lester, who threw a successful sim game at Wrigley on Friday and is feeling fine and frisky. He'll throw a bullpen session tomorrow or Tuesday, and could start on Thursday.

    No pre-game predictions today, except to say it is likely to be a stressful W.

    Go Cubs!

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    P.S.: Happy Easter, or whatever you do. Like Sean says, if nothing else, Happy Sunday.

    I'm stuck (!) outside on this gorgeous day without a TV, but I got Pat and Ron with me. Still looking for those first pops of green on the ivy (always been my thing). I think they're still a week or two away, but if anyone catches a glimpse, let me know. That's when baseball really heats up.

  • Really?

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    Yes. He walked him so that he could get a twin killing. It’s part of his strategy.

  • Anyone else already second guessing using chatwood when they had almost no incentive to with Lester returning???

  • In reply to kkhiavi:

    Good work all we’ve clearly succeeded in lighting a fire under the guy. Let’s hope that DP is the start to an effective outing

  • In reply to kkhiavi:

    No. That’s why they called up Mills. Chatwood is on the 25 man roster, might as well use him in a zero 0-0 game in the early innings... ;o)

  • In reply to Milk Stout:

    In my desperation in trying to find anything positive in Chatwood's starts last year I pointed out the Cubs had a good W/L record in games he started. That record may have gone south before he was finally jettisoned from the rotation, but I recall it being well over .500.

    My theory was the position players knew they had to put on their big-boy pants when Tyler was scheduled to take the bump.

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    Yes. They were able to limit damage in his games & get some offense. But the downside was that it contributed to overworked bullpen.

  • In reply to kkhiavi:

    I've read some theories that the Cubs discussed, and although everyone could have thrown on regular rest without needing Chatwood, the decision was made to give extra rest and start Chatwood today vs. the D-Backs. The thinking was that he matches up as well as he can against this lineup, and the Dodgers are very prone vs. lefties.

    That last point is important and encouraging, IMO, as all signs point to Big Jon starting Thursday. The Cubs have declined to announce a starter for that day, so that's what I expect.

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    It’s one of those calls barley where if it works out and they win I’ll be happy especially given the added benefits that you mentioned. I’d just hate to lose a home series though against a D-Backs team that I believe won’t be contending for long. I hope he pitches well or the cubs just give him an absurd amount of run support like they did last season

  • In reply to kkhiavi:

    I'm totally poking at you, kkhiavi. You've earned a lot of respect here with your knowledgeable posts, and I enjoy reading your insight. But as I pointed out to one of the trolls we dealt with about a year ago:

    That's "Barley", with a capital "B". Cheers, my friend! :)

  • Chatswood looking very sharp through the 4th. If he were able to pitch like this moving forward, what a bonus that would be... Need to get him some runs now.

  • In reply to ItFinallyHappened:

    I swear I may have more confidence in Chatwood now than I do in Darvish. Both of their problems are mental, and I think Tyler's are more shallow and easily fixed.

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    I was just thinking that myself, would it actually be possible to swap their roles?

  • In reply to Treebeard:

    And their contracts.

  • In reply to 44slug:

    Haha! Nice.......

  • This the Cubs 20th game of the year and Contreras has played in 19 of them. If this keeps up he'll be toast by the all star break.

    Why does it look like Bryant is trying to hit everything to the opposite way. It usually ends up with a weak fly ball to right or a strikeout.

  • In reply to 2016 Cubs:

    I totally agree on Contreras. With an off day tomorrow, I hope he gets Wednesday off for a two-day rest.

  • In reply to Cubs09:

    *Tuesday*

  • 0-0 going into the 5th. Who complains about that on a day Chatwood starts?

  • Chatwood at 64 pitches here in the 6th.

    Wow, and hell ya.

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    Barley- I saw post you made yesterday about Rizzo/Baez, but didn't get it because I didn't catch the entire game. What was that about? Inquiring minds want to know...

  • In reply to Cubber Lang:

    I honestly don't know. I remember making comments about how Schwarber isn't as good a two-strike hitter as Rizzo, so he shouldn't go so deep in counts. I don't remember a Baez/Rizzo comp, but I am often wrong.

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    No worries BP... Glad to see Javy come up big today for us! Great pitching from Chatwood too. Really excited to see how we matchup against the Dodgers next.

  • Think it’s safe to say that almora in the leadoff spot isn’t working out.

  • Might have to put the $126M man in the bullpen and give the job to Chatwood. This could serve 3 purposes. 1: Won't have to watch him struggle starting anymore, 2: He might make a good reliever with his 99 mph fastball and 3: Might make him want to opt out after this season.

  • In reply to 2016 Cubs:

    Lol goodness I’m already shaking my head getting ready for all the 5th starter spot controversy talks that are surely coming after chatwoods outing. I almost want Lester to miss another start so I have a larger sample to evaluate both of them

  • El Mago.

    That dude goes oppo better than anyone in baseball. Or at least it seems so.

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    As javy goes we go barley

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    Yes, EL Mago the Oppo Taco...

    No reason he should ever be swinging to pull the ball except for when the pitcher gives him the cookie he was looking for.

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    Dat true.

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    Need to watch Judge at Yankee Stadium.

  • Chatwoods start today was better than ANY of Darvish's starts since he put on a Cub uniform !!! I said prior to his first scheduled start was postponed that I thought he might end up being a more valuable pitcher for this team than Darvish this year. I know there is a LOT of season left, but so far it looks feasible

  • 2nd straight outing where kintzlers outing has ended in a deep fly ball that should’ve been a home run. His ERA is ok but I hope they don’t plan on relying on him as the 2nd set up guy after cishek. Kintzlers process don’t match his results thus far.

    On a positive note though I think most of us would agree that’s as good as chatwoods looked in a cub uniform. Amazing how simply throwing strikes can make all the difference

  • Wow walkwood pitched a good game and a quality start! hats off.

  • Lemons and peppers! That's a way of cursing without cursing.

    Tie game.

    Somehow, someway, Javy wins this game.

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    Javier Báez-league leader in most defensive fumbles caused

  • Did someone mention Javy going the opposite way?

  • I am actually wondering why Bryant is playing 3B instead of Bote.

  • In reply to clarkAddson:

    Honestly I trust Bote this year esp in rbi spots a lot more then I trust a lot of hitters on this club that may have been higher ranked prospects. Maybe they were onto something extending him?

  • In reply to kkhiavi:

    He has also been one of the most reliable fielders on the Cubs this year.

  • In reply to clarkAddson:

    I think KB is gonna be fine personally the guys had 3 6+ WAR seasons but yeah I don’t look at him as a strong 3B. Back on Bote Plays 2B adequately and is in my eyes a well above avg 3B and defensive metrics support that observation. The kids got a character trait too I know none of us know him well personally but something about him gives me him gives me confidence that he’s gonna keep improving. He’s already come a long ways and proven a lot of people wrong

  • El Mago.

  • Cubs pitching gives up only 1 run in a Chatwood start where he goes 6 innings? And he didn’t give up the run? I say WoW.... Thanks to Javy & Bote for picking up Stropey! Fly the W.

  • Somebody tell me again how the WAR stat works? Nerds and mathematians tell me Javy is only responsible for 4-5 wins per year.

    OK.

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    I think he has already done that this year. And Bote continues to show a lot of confidence when batting no matter what the circumstance.

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    I know you know this but the number of games won is not what WAR measures.

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    Wins Above Replacement (level player). That’s how many more wins the Cubs get because Javy is the SS/2B vs some average Joe SS/2B.

  • fb_avatar

    I didn't get to see this gem by Chatwood. Our pitchers have been terrific lately so maybe we do have a good starting (and lately relieving) staff.
    When we win, it's
    Rolling, Rolling, Rolling with a winner!

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