Make It Stop--Brewers 13 Cubs 10

José Quintana had dominated the Milwaukee Brewers. Quintana was also one of the few bright spots in the Texas series, but the Cubs tailspin continued in full force as Q had no fastball command. The bullpen was terrible, and the offense showed up late and a little bit short.

The Brewers win was their sixth straight. The Cubs loss was their sixth straight. The 1-6 start for the Cubs is their worst since 1983. The Cubs have started 1-6 or worse only 9 times. The Cubs managed a winning record just once after such a start and they finished second in that campaign.

It is early. This is a team that is capable of putting a run together. There are enough arms that can get hot, but the margins are getting smaller by the day for this team to turn it around.

WPA CHART

Source: FanGraphs

The mood of the evening was set early. The first four Brewers reached base and the Cubs were down 2-0 before the first recorded out. The double play gave Quintana a chance to settle in, but Quintana loaded the bases with one out. He loaded the bases by walking his counterpart Brandon Woodruff and Lorenzo Cain. A Ryan Braun blast gave the Brewers a 6-0 lead and the Cubs never managed to bring the tying run to the plate again.

The Brewers made it 8-0 with back to back blasts from Hernán Pérez and Yasmani Grandal in the third inning. Quintana would be lifted after just three innings. The Cubs offense continued to do its thing. Brandon Woodruff was roughed up in the fourth inning. Kyle Schwarber pulled a ball through the shift and Willson Contreras was drilled with a two seam fastball running in. Daniel "Who needs Bryce Harper" Descalso launched a no doubter to get the Cubs on the board. Jason Heyward drew a walk, but the Cubs were close to leaving him planted at first base after back to back strike outs. Kris Bryant hit a gapper that Heyward scored on without a throw to cut the Brewers lead in half. Woodruff struck out Anthony Rizzo looking to end the fourth.

Brad Brach was the first Cubs reliever and he worked around a two out walk for a scoreless frame. Chase Anderson was the next Brewers pitcher, and the Cubs moved within three after a Willson Contreras home run. Daniel Descalso struck out to end the inning.

Brad Brach retired the first batter of the fifth inning, but Grandal singled which was the end of Brach's outing. Carl Edward Jr. was the choice and it worked as well as it has so far this season as Orlando Arcia blasted a two run shot to make it 10-5. Edwards retired the next two batters, but the runs hurt as Chase Anderson retired the next six Cubs batters he faced.

Brandon Kintzler pitched the seventh and allowed the Brewers to add a field goal. Those runs would prove pivotal as the Cubs offense provided another later rally. Jason Heyward hit a two run home run against Matt Albers in the eighth inning. The Cubs bats came to life in the ninth inning down big for the second night in a row. The first three Cubs reached, and all three would score. Unfortunately the next three Cubs batters grounded out to end the threat and the Cubs night.

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  • We have a pitching issue for sure. It almost looks like no serious work was done in ST. Every guy looks like he is in his first week of ST where there is spotty command and nothing on the ball. And when a strike is thrown, the pitch is center-cut.

    Between Hickey and now Hottovoy our staff has been a mess. I’d love to understand the pitching philosophy being taught as 3 of every 4 guys has regressed coming to the Cubs.

    The problem is when one side of the ball is awful, the other side gets more pressure placed on them. This can have a spiraling down effect on the entire team. The O can’t show up thinking they have to score 8-15 runs every night to get a W.

    This start wasn’t even in the realm of possibilities as I looked upon the season. Yet here we are. #disappointed

  • In reply to rbrucato:

    People can say what they want about Bosio, but Arrieta turned into a Cy Young pitcher, other guys like Strop, Feldman, Maholm, Grimm, Hammel and others thrived. Once Bosio left and our major leaguers started dancing in the bullpen celebrating home runs and rubbing it into the face of our opponents(unsportsmanship like behavior has no place in sports), our staff has declined ever since. We miss a great pitching coach.

    Also, it's a shame we didn't trade for Yellich.

  • I would characterize the poor start to the 2019 season as more a matter of poor execution by the pitching staff as a whole. Really there has been no bright spots to call out.

    I am not sure this can be a coaching issue when it seems that the team is behaving like an expansion team instead a quality team.

    Even Kyle Hendricks laid an egg in his first start.

    Its still too early to say anything other than this team is better than the first 7 games, which frankly have sucked.

  • Most discouraging thing for me is all off season we heard the cubs were focused from the fo down to the players,guys were working hard and this team was motivated after the '18 finish.Then they start off the season like this

    Not worried about the hole the cubs are in because there's like 150 somethin games left and the brewers were 5.5 games out right before labor day last season.It's just bad habits, bad defense,the walks, the bullpen.

    The offense looks much better than that 2nd half debacle and contreras looks to be back are 2 positives.I really felt like this team needed some personnel change after 2018.

  • It's clear the organizational will be making upcoming changes as this team is unmotivated and lost. Will the Cubs go from a player manager to a stern manager, possible another Joe from Northwestern? Meh!
    When a FO admits they have changed their draft philosophy on pitchers after drafting over 150 pitchers in 7 drafts and not one on the Cubs major league roster? Stunning! After the promises of waves of prospects and only Nico as the only current impact prospect will Jason be asked to leave?
    We can only hope that Zo, Q, Morrow, Russell, Chatwood, and Montgomery increase their trade value to help the upper levels of the minors at the trade deadline. Can you imagine what the Phillies will pay for Cole to come home if they are in a race and Cole is healthy and functional?

  • In reply to Rock:

    How can Maddon be considered a players manager? A lot of players don't like him and it's beginning to show. It looks like he's lost this team?

  • In reply to Roe Skidmore:

    In a recent poll conducted by ESPN's Jim Bowden, 117 players were asked to vote who they believe is the best players manager in the MLB.

    No. 1 on that list? Joe Maddon.

    Just one NBC poll/article to support the industry claim.

  • In reply to Rock:

    A poll doesn't mean he has the respect of his team.

  • In reply to Roe Skidmore:

    Which players have come forward?

  • Has any other team played three road series to start the season? It isnt an excuse, but might be a factor.

  • I can't watch my Cubs out here in the forests in Oregon, maybe that's a good thing. I'm going to put all the blame on PECOTA. The algorithm nerdy stat thing. It's jinxed the Cubs. It pegged them for last place. 79 wins. At this rate, 79 wins would be a good Season. Heads should roll. They're not as good as they thought they were. I'd rather have the Billy Goat back. Meanwhile, Theo and Jed are up in their suite, wringing their hands.

  • In reply to LRCCubsFan:

    That goat ain't comin' back.
    He got roasted over a spit a couple of years ago.

  • We go all winter & Spring Training, can’t wait for the new season to get here and then boing oing oing.... But They’ll be fine. This is that rough patch they’re going through.

    They had no qualms sending out Happ & Duensing. It’s time for Edwards. AAA just might do him good. He looks lost like a deer in the headlights. The rest of the relief corps? I don’t know. I thought Brach looked alright until Joe pulled him for Edwards. After the bomb I turned to the Hawks game.

  • In reply to Milk Stout:

    Edwards looked like a "find" when we brought him up. He seems to have lost all confidence.
    He needs to go down and start, maybe he can turn it around as a starter?

  • Just read how historically bad this start is — this is the most runs allowed in the first 7 games since 1901. Since 1901!!!!!!!

  • In reply to rbrucato:

    Hey, they’re getting it all out of their system now. Today is a new day. The start of the least amount of runs since 1908...

  • In reply to Milk Stout:

    I’m down with that. A nice little 5 or 6 game winning streak would be helpful.

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    In reply to rbrucato:

    Atleast the offense is clicking and found their groove, or sense of urgency. I guess the pitchers didn't get the message. Lester has been the only bright spot of the whole pitching staff.

  • In reply to Wrigley0923:

    Agreed. The only thing I could find wrong is we have scored runs late. I would like to see us jump out and get the lead early. Small complaint, but have been pleasantly surprised with the production thus far.

  • Big game tonight,only 3 teams that started off 1-7 in mlb history made the postseason('95 reds, '11 rays, '74 pirates)

    6 teams in mlb history started off 2-6 and made the postseason, 2 of those 6 won the world series.

  • In reply to bolla:

    When you see numbers like that, I guess the “chill, we have 150+ games to go” is patently wrong. Those are tough numbers to swallow when looking at this start.

  • Javy needs to look in the mirror and ask himself if all his wild swings striking out at bat after at bat, swinging at balls out of the zone are putting team first or just selfish...

    He’s on pace to strike out 255 times this season if he plays every game. What’s the record?

  • In reply to Cubber Lang:

    I guess he is lucky he only had 4 at bats last night. He was on a record pace for a single game. Looks like he forgot what he talked about his first week in ST.

    He will adjust. I expect a quick turnaround for him.

    Oh, and Barley Pop, no more predictions for Javy from you. LMAO

  • In reply to rbrucato:

    I think my prediction of five bombs for Javy last night was just a bit less ridiculous than my call for a 765-0 Cubs W, but I am still hoping for the one-on-one opportunity for Javy to beat Yelich in some type of head-to-head play. That would be sweet!

    I'm checking various outlets throughout the day expecting a roster move in the pen. Edwards Jr. is lost, mechanically and mentally, to the point that I feel bad for him. He knows he's hurting the team but can't do anything about it. I'm not clear on all the rules, but he's approaching a 3-year service-time milestone, I believe May 4th, when he can refuse an assignment. He needs to go down and sort himself out.

    The big boys and Iowa both play in the 6 o'clock hour tonight, so I'm keeping my eye on rosters and lineups. For what it's worth, I've seen people speculate on Mekkes or Webster, but neither is on the 40-man. Maples' inconsistency is exactly what we don't need right now. Maybe Mills? I'm not sure what his schedule has been.

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    Anyone know what's up with Alec Mills? I see he is on the 40-man but I can't find him on any active roster.

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    I'm hearing Edwards Jr. to Iowa and Monty to the IL. No word yet on call-ups.

    I've been out of the loop. When did the DL become the IL?

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    I am still scratching my head at why they let Edwards change his wind up to that toe tap thing. Then they change it back on the fly and expect him to be fine.

  • In reply to 2016 Cubs:

    That baffles me as well. Apparently Edwards Jr. worked on the new delivery over the winter. My guess is to compensate for some arm issues, as he ended 2018 with elbow and shoulder problems. Maddon was alerted during Spring Training by league officials that the delivery would be deemed illigal in real games, but didn't do anything because ?. The issue was brought up in the opening series in Texas, so now Edwards Jr. has to change his mechanics on the fly while dealing with confidence issues and possibly injury. I don't get it, either.

    Hopefully he straightens it out in Iowa. We need him to be Good Carl.

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    Webster & Ryan coming up. I like it.

  • In reply to Milk Stout:

    That makes sense. Ryan as a lefty and he's on the 40-man. Webster isn't, so there will have to be a move. Maybe Tseng could clear waivers? Webster is also out of options, so I expect him to be here as long as he is effective, then he'll probably be out if the organization.

    To answer my earlier question, it looks like Mills is on the Iowa 7-day DL. I don't know why.

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    DL became IL when MLB was told it wasn’t PC to those in society that are disabled .

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    Javy couldn't have had a worse night. I was thinking about your prediction and felt bad. We both agree that if the Cubs are going to do anything this year they'll need Javy to be much closer to last year. I'll stand by my prediction that he will regress from last year and that 2018 will turn out to be a career year. Just too much wild in that stallion to be tamed.

  • In reply to INSaluki:

    And I'll stand by my boy with every shred of baseball cred I have. I have laid out, meticulously, every reason in the world why I think Javier Baez will be a stud for the last 6 years. I have delved deeply into his upbringing, family structure, character, and personality. I have chronicaled his rise and pointed out his weaknesses. I have stated, multiple times, that I see a package of talent in him that I have never seen before, and for that reason I have done more research and analysis into Javier Baez as a baseball talent than I have as any other ballplayer in my life. And at every single point over the last six years, I have disagreed with nearly every baseball pundit there is. I have maintained my belief that Javy is an MVP.

    The only blowback I get is that, at whatever level, people say he has peaked. I always ask for a reason why you would think that, and all the expert analysis I hear is because he's different, a show-boat. He looks better than everyone else on the field, and somehow that's a knock on him. I'm still waiting for a single analyst to give me a single reason WHY they think a young dude with this much natural ability and drive will suddenly regress as he is entering the prime of his career. I have laid out a iron-clad case with a thousand points of reference why I think he is awesome and getting better. I have yet to hear a single case of WHY his career will tank.

    I'm waiting.

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    Agreed even if he doesn’t quite match last year this season I don’t believe we’ve seen the best of Báez nor do I believe he’s made his last all star game. He pretty much always starts slow going back to class A ball even I’d go as far as to say he’s basically started slow the vast majority out seasons over his cubs career. Javy is the least of their concerns the great thing about Javy is he can go through a worse case scenario start and have 12 strikeouts in 3 games and he’ll have games or stretches that drive you crazy. But then he has the talent to carry a team for a month or so on his back. His consistency has improved every year and of his career and I think he has easily the most innate talent on this entire roster and I’m just glad he’s on our side

  • What I see from the pitchers is passivity and overthinking. They're nibbling themselves into trouble. They need to get aggressive. They need to grip it and rip it.

    Edwards needs to go away for a while to regroup.

  • I also have to question Contreras's framing.

  • In reply to CoconutMeat:

    Most of the pitching is so bad that Willson could catch with a washtub instead of a mitt and STILL not make it look like a strike. In order for framing to be an issue, the pitch has to be somewhere in the same ZIP-code as the strike zone.

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    We need a chicken bone cross to take the hex off the pitching staff. Every one of our rp is a "Nuke Lalouche"!

  • In reply to Rick Rariden:

    That's funny. Earlier today I was thinking we need to sacrifice a chicken to Jobu!

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    ...or maybe one relief pitcher...

  • Nice to see Hottovoy and Hickey take Wacha out for breakfast today. 6 BB in 2 innings!!!!!!

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