Cubs Game Post 9/8


Series preview is here.


Sunday: 1:10 PM CT on NBC Sports Chicago/670AM



1. Ben Zobrist (S) 2B
2. Kyle Schwarber (L) LF
4. Anthony Rizzo (L) 1B
6. Jason Heyward (L) CF
7. Addison Russell (R) SS
8. David Bote (R) 3B
9. Jon Lester (L) P
1. Lorenzo Cain (R) CF
4. Ryan Braun (R) LF
5. Eric Thames (L) 1B
6. Hernan Perez (R) 3B
8. Orlando Arcia (R) SS
9. Adrian Houser (R) P
Bullpen Usage

Lineups and Bullpen Usage via Baseball Press.

Opposing pitcher

Scouting Reports from Brooks Baseball.

Adrian Houser: Adrian Houser has thrown 1,963 pitches that have been tracked by the PITCHf/x system between 2015 and 2019, including pitches thrown in the MLB Regular Season, Spring Training and Fall/Winter Ball. In 2019, he has relied primarily on his Sinker (95mph) and Fourseam Fastball (95mph), also mixing in a Curve (81mph), Slider (88mph) and Change (86mph).

His sinker is a real worm killer that generates an extreme number of groundballs compared to other pitchers' sinkers, generates a high number of swings & misses compared to other pitchers' sinkers, has well above average velo and has some natural sinking action. His fourseam fastball generates an extremely high number of swings & misses compared to other pitchers' fourseamers, has slightly above average velo and has slightly less natural movement than typical. His curve has an exceptional bite, has primarily 12-6 movement, generates fewer whiffs/swing compared to other pitchers' curves and is slightly harder than usual. His slider is thrown extremely hard, has less than expected depth and results in somewhat more flyballs compared to other pitchers' sliders. His change is slightly firmer than usual and has some natural sink to it.

Sean's Note: Houser moved from the bullpen to the rotation where he has been much better. He strikes out an above average 24.4% of opposing batters. His big weapon is his sinker, he has an impressive 54% ground ball rate. Lefties hit for a higher average and slugging against him than right handed hitters. Jason Heyward and Kyle Schwarber took him deep in a Cubs win in early August.

Final Thoughts: Once again the Cubs are in a must win spot. Also got to stop letting Christian Yelich beat you. Need a big effort from Jon Lester.

Filed under: Game preview

Tags: jon Lester


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  • Play ball!

    I just saw new video of KB's AB against Hader last night. I was listening on the radio, wasn't watching. Bryant fouled a ball into the 1B stands and his knee buckled. He immediately grabbed it and finished the AB, and the game, but he'll be dealing with this through September. Then he'll have the offseason.

    The Baez news yesterday was crushing. I threatened to go kicking cute puppies and kittens, but I didn't. I actually think this could be a good thing. Maybe the team rallies around the loss of its best player and captain and pulls together for a miraculous run. I think this is what we needed to play more consistent ball. I believe Javy's replacement will take this opportunity and focus on playing baseball, and will fill Javy's shoes and carry us to the promised land. Win one for the Gipper!

    I also believe in Santa Claus and the #*"" #+* Easter Bunny. We're done for 2019.

    Go Cubs!

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    If anyone figures out what this bunch might "rally around," we could all chip in and get it for them. They're an awe-(s**t!)-inspiring bunch, to be sure.

  • ICYMI, South Bend advanced to the semi-final round. One more series win and they play for the Championship. Iowa has come back from a 2-0 deficit and is currently leading 2-0 in the 5th inning of the decisive Game 5. These guys could give a lesson on how hard we're going to have to fight to salvage a season.

    This little quip kinda sums up the alternating visions of what this offseason should bring. Revolution, or compromise?

    "Hey think the time is right
    For a palace revolution.
    But where I live the game
    To play is compromise solution.

    Well now, what can a poor boy do?
    Except to sing for a rock n' roll band?
    'Cause in sleepy London town
    There's just no place for a street fighting man, no."

  • Damn. Never like to see that.

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    Scary stuff

  • Why doesn't Yelich have a launch angle swing? Could that be why he has such good contact skills?

  • In reply to clarkAddson:

    It's a little more complicated than that, but he is just one of the few best players on the planet. It ain't as simple as teaching people a swing.

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    I think it has already been proven that the launch angle swing causes more strikeouts. They have both increased at the same time. I disagree. It starts by teaching the swing and the more natural the swing is the easier it will be to make contact with the ball. In addition, the less moving parts in the swing the easier it is to make contact also. It is as simple as that.

  • In reply to clarkAddson:

    It is not that simple.

    No one was complaining about Bryants "launch angle" swing in 2015 and 2016.

    Yelich is in the 1% of hitters. I hope he stays healthy but a shoulder or wrist injury could change everything.

  • In reply to JohnCC:

    Sometimes I wonder how much baseball experience some of you have because some of you obviously do not know what you are talking about. Instead of explaining why, some of you just bring up past events like that explains everything.

    Here is a common sense explanation. Stand in your batting stance and then swing. The first thing you have to do is to bring your hands down to hit the ball if it is a strike. Your follow through will give you a natural upper cut (or launch angle).

    Now, try the same swing with an exaggerated launch angle. In order to do that, you have to bring your hands down even further in order to swing up. Not only does it take more time to do that but it also makes it harder to make contact.

  • In reply to JohnCC:

    I was complaining about his high strikeouts rate.

  • In reply to WaitTilNextYear:

    Some people will find something to complain about even in a guy's MVP season.

  • In reply to JohnCC:

    Says the guy complaining about Happ and bote on left side.

    That has always been a concern for me. Bryant is my favorite cub. But I can still have a concern for him.

  • In reply to WaitTilNextYear:

    You like Bote at SS? I think Bote is a great bench player, but when he's starting at SS, we have a big problem!

    Bryant brought the K rate way down. His shoulder and now knee really hurt his swing.

  • In reply to clarkAddson:

    He actually does. There was a great article on ESPN that talks about his transformation from the All Star break 2 years ago. BOnds and Menenchino told him to “get the ball in the air” and he made the changes. You should read and educate yourself instead of the bad post.

  • In reply to rbrucato:

    He actually does what? Just watch Yelich swing and then talk like you know something. I explained why its better unlike you going by heresay. Talk about "bad post". Back up what you are saying.

  • In reply to clarkAddson:

    Your eyes don’t know what the hell you are looking at.

    Go read the article and then check back. Enough of your take on “launch angle” — you don’t know what you are talking about. Timing early to get the ball out front so he could ELEVATE it.

  • In reply to clarkAddson:

    And go study Bobby Tewksbary and Chris O’Leary before spouting off any more. You know very little about an elite swing.

  • Can't get much worse, eh? Happ and Bote as the left half of an infield doesn't instill a lot of confidence.

    KB's knee is bad and has been effecting his swing for months.

    Excuses, but it's real. Without Javy and KB they don't stand much of a chance. September is will be an anticlimactic wind down. Bummer.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to JohnCC:

    Yeah, it’s the second year in a row KB has been rendered ineffective in the 2nd half by a nagging injury. Very frustrating.

  • In reply to JohnCC:

    I'm as optimistic as a Cubs fan comes. I was holding onto hope that we would get hot going into the playoffs. We would beat the DirtyBirds head-to-head to win the Central.

    But I'm also a realist. When I saw that Javy's thumb was broken I knew 2019 was over.

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    I as pretty critical early, but then just tired of beating them up, and started looking for positives. Some came like Kimbrel and Castellanos. It just wasn't enough as injuries mounted. Maybe a silver lining will be Baez and Bryant opting for hometown extensions after seeing how injuries can take it all away.

  • In reply to 44slug:

    I was going to wait to say that until the season is over but, .....yes,
    they should both be offered sizable generous extension offers and if refused, trade them.....both.
    Either way, it will cost the organization a lot of money to keep them or to sign replacements so you could see how the front office will look at it....get a haul of good prospects and still spend money they would have had to anyway to field the replacements and go from there......after 3 years now, changes will be made.

  • In reply to 44slug:

    There will not be any hometown discount

  • In reply to JohnCC:

    I am glad he has gotten better at that. You could say his power numbers have gone down because maybe more effort into not striking out as much????

    As far as Bote goes. As what has happened in last 4 days then yes I am happy with Bote as our 3rd SS. Name another team that has a better SS on their depth chart at #3??? Addi will be back soon and I feel like we will get good news on Baez.

  • Slip slidin' away, slip slidin' away, You know you're nearer you're destination the more you're slip slidin' away.

  • In reply to Cubmitted:

    Great tune. Sadly fitting.

  • In reply to Cubmitted:

    Still good chance to be a wildcard in playoffs

  • I just checked on the Iowa game. Game 5, elimination.

    When does spring training start?

    Go South Bend!

    DirtyBirds win, again.

    This has been a rough weekend.

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    Could have gone a bit better.

  • In reply to Cubmitted:

    Ya think?

  • Pat Hughes just broke out the old "you're never as good as you look when you're winning and never as bad as you look when you're losing" cliche. I agree with that.

    We've been a .500 team for several months now. We ain't nearly a .500 team without Javy.

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    They are a better than 500 team without Baez

  • In reply to WaitUntilNextYear:

    Not sure what you mean there. We were a .500 team for months with Javy. No one will convince me we are better without him, and if you try to, you are delusional.

  • And Iowa just got eliminated. Hate to be a downer, I'm usually not, but this weekend was a straight kick to the gonads. With extra torque.

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    Does Iowa losing really matter?

  • In reply to WaitUntilNextYear:

    Yeah, to some of us. Like the kids who play there, the coaches and fans...

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