All Good Things--Royals 13 Cubs 2

Must come to an end.

They don't have to end so demonstratively, but that was the fate of the Cubs winning streak ending in a 13-2 drubbing by the Royals on national television. The 13-2 score doesn't even do full justice for how thoroughly the Cubs were beat tonight. The Cubs managed to put more than one runner on base only once prior to the final inning and only broke through with two outs in the ninth inning. The Cubs were able to avoid their first shutout, but the game was well in hand by that point. Victor Caratini and Nico Hoerner were able to drive in the two runs, but it was a quiet night for the bats.

Still it is hard to feel too down after a 10-3 start. The Cubs are supposed to be able to start their series against the Cardinals tomorrow, who have to make roughly half a bajillion games already, but we will see if first pitch happens.

WPA CHART


Source: FanGraphs

The Royals starter Brad Keller kept the Cubs bats quiet for five innings. Kyle Zimmer shut down the Cubs for two innings and Kevin McCarthy closed it out in a clearly not save situation. The most fun moment of the Cubs at the plate might have been David Ross sending Alec Mills to the plate with one out in the ninth inning. Mills watched three straight over the heart of the plate before walking back to the dugout.

Tyler Chatwood was not sharp. He punched out Whit Merrifield to start the game but Jorge Soler, Salvador Perez and Ryan O'Hearn hit back to back to back singles to put the Royals ahead 1-0. Chatwood struck out Mondesi and got a pop up from Alex Gordon to end the inning. Maikel Franco hit a double to start the second. Chatwood would add two more strikeouts to his total before Whit Merrified hit a bomb making it 3-0.

The wheels came completely off in the third inning with Adalberto Mondesi and Alex Gordon hitting back to back doubles. Franco then hit a blast. Jorge Lopez singled, and then Nick Heath doubled to drive in the Royals seventh run and end Chatwood's evening. Duane Underwood Jr. had some control issues, and the Royals were able to add two more tallies before the third inning was finished.

Underwood pitched a clean fourth inning, but the Royals tacked on a couple more runs in the fifth inning. Whit Merrifield hit a one out single and back to back doubles from Perez and O'Hearn made it a 11-0 ballgame, and cheers to you if you stuck with this one after that point.

Dan Winkler gave up a two out bomb to Jorge Soler in the seventh inning and Craig Kimbrel was shaky again yielding just one run in the eighth inning. Ryan Tepera was the one Cubs reliever who was able to put up a zero and escape this evening.

Random Reference

Tyler Chatwood was not good tonight, but it was a very different sort of not good then his disastrous 2018 campaign. Chatwood did not issue a single walk in his outing, and his command wasn't that bad. The Royals just hit him often and often hard. It felt a bit like Marge yelling at Bart in this clip when thinking about Chatwood not beating himself.

That and the first few innings was definitely playing "It's still good. It's still good." as the Royals continued to extend their lead.

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  • Ugh...

    That WPA chart looks like the opposite of a flatline. Which is what happened tonight, on national TV.

    Kimbrel came in for some work, as many of us clamored for. He had thrown over 25 curveballs on the season before Franco finally swung at one. Think about that. No one even swings at Kimbrel's curve, they sit on his fastball. Tipping his pitches, ya think?

    Ross tried to lighten the mood by sending Mills up to pinch-hit. I can hear the instructions before he did so: Don't swing. And don't hurt yourself. Make us laugh.

    Oh, and the Reds lost worse than we did. 13-0.

    On to St. Louis.

  • I wonder how long Ross will stay with Bryant at lead off. I wonder if he'd give Hoerner a shot?

  • In reply to Ronson54:

    It's too soon to think about removing him. Why would you? He sees lots of pitches and is starting to hit. Runs the bases really well and bats more often per game.

  • The problem with Nico in the leadoff spot is that he doesn't play everyday. He has to get Kipnis in there from time to time and then who leads off? Means you are changing the top of the lineup around a lot.
    As well, as excited as we all are with Nico, he still has some developing to do.

    Last night he had a 3-1 count and took a fastball right down the middle to go 3-2. Next pitch was a breaking ball low and outside and he threw his bat at it for an easy tapper to second. Was like he was afraid to strikeout and wanted to put the ball in play.

    With more experience, he either takes a good swing at the 3-1 pitch or does a better job of laying off that awful 3-2 pitch.

  • In reply to IrwinFletcher:

    Good observation Irwin. Just in general though, I’d like to see Ross tell Nico that for awhile, not to be too concerned about working the count. Be more selectively aggressive in hitters counts. Would likely help his confidence.

  • In reply to IrwinFletcher:

    All true. But chasing outside breaking balls has victimized Bryant as well. Until he (and Baez!) learn to lay off that pitch, I just don't see how he's the long term answer at lead off.

  • Chatty gave up some hard contact but also some weak contact that just found holes. He can get guys to reach a lot and KC did a good job of still putting it in play. I would almost think about taking it easy on the infield shifts for Chatwood.

  • With media and fans banned from the South Bend alternate site, info on how things are going and how prospects are doing is hard to come by. Iowa Cubs bear writer Tommy Birch was able to do a quick interview with Iowa manager Marty Pevey, who is running things in South Bend. A look into the daily routines, the lack of enough players to have real intra-squad games, and some quick observations on 5 of the top prospects.

    https://www.desmoinesregister.com/story/sports/baseball/iowa-cubs/2020/08/06/marty-pevey-iowa-cubs-chicago-cubs-adbert-alzolay-miguel-amaya-brennan-davis-brailyn-marquez/5580355002/

  • The Cardinals just reported at least one more positive Covid test, and tonight's game has been postponed.

  • In reply to Mike Pilbean:

    I’d like to see teams face a little penalty for games that are delayed due to their players getting Covid. Maybe for every 3 or 4 games that are postponed, drop their first round position, by one spot.

  • In reply to cubbustible:

    Especially in a scenario where the players were negligent. There have been rumors that cardinal players went to a casino, which if true is disrespectful to the rest of the league that’s making sacrifices to get finish this season. You’d think a contending team would be more responsible, as their actions affect the rest of the league. My idea was make St. Louis take 1 loss per lost series, and then make up the other 2 games with a double header. This would save a significant amount of time. I recognize I’m just throwing this idea out of the blue, and it’s not going to happen. But how in the heck is the league supposed to make up weeks worth of games. They can brush the marlins aside as that organization is irrelevant to this 2020 season. But these missed games for the cards are piling up, and I wonder if this weekends entire series is postponed.

  • In reply to kkhiavi:

    Looks like entire series postponed

  • In reply to stix:

    yep.

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    In reply to kkhiavi:

    Tend to agree the cards should be held more accountable,but kind of late to change the rules now. Maybe after further review make them play the games with the players they have on their 60 man roster, isn't that the reason they have the covid Dl, bring players in to play the games, stop with all this postponing games.
    Kevin, on another note I noticed you have BDavis as your top prospect, I like him a lot,too, but I think Marquez is our best because he is further ahead in AA, also because of the need for pitching on this club...

  • In reply to tater:

    Davis is my personal favorite as I generally tend to lean towards prospects with upside, rather then more of a high floor/limited ceiling prospect like Nico. I'm really starting to love Brennans upside as an everyday player now that we're seeing his raw power translate into his ABs. I also was impressed with his already disciplined approach, and athletic traits. I think he's the highest upside player in the system, unless Marquez proves his doubters wrong that he's a legitimate top starting prospect.

    I think you were right about your love for Marquez Tater, and I'm glad they didn't trade him last deadline. He had an outstanding 2nd half last year, and his improving fastball command made me feel that this kid maybe has a chance as a starter. Personally I still have my concerns that he profiles best in the bullpen. His control still isn't great (although improving). I still worry whether the lack of a major league 3rd pitch (changeups improving though) might give him trouble against major league right handed hitters. And scouts question whether he has the athleticism to consistently repeat his mechanics, which is more important if he's to become a starting pitcher. But he's made pretty considerable strides last year, and if I'm the cubs I still develop this kid as a starter. What I still love about Marquez is that he can fail in his pursuit to become a starter, and he would still have ace reliever potential. That gives him a pretty good shot at being a successful major leaguer either way with that fastball, and his ability to dominate left handed hitters. And the starters upside is still certainly there. I see this kid as a part of the core and I wish we had a minor league season to monitor the strides that Brailyns made this past offseason.

  • In reply to tater:

    https://www.cubsinsider.com/2020/08/08/top-cubs-prospect-brennen-davis-may-actually-be-better-than-anyone-imagined/

    Tater while we’re on the subject of the minor leagues cubs insider wrote a nice piece on Davis maybe being an even better prospect then many are already giving him credit for. Marty Pevey did an interview with the Des Moines Register on cubs prospects. He commented on a number of cubs prospects, but he saved the biggest praise for Davis. He said “I’ve never seen power like this kids going to have. I’m not talking about pull power. I’m talking about raw, leverage power-like Dale Murphy driving the ball into right center early in his career. Holy smokes, he’s got some pop.”

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    In reply to kkhiavi:

    Saw the article and hope all the hype surrounding him is true,but with the cubs I'm always a little skeptical. I do believe the cubs are getting some good young players in the system, with Howard and our IFA ss coming , plus our other draft picks this year, maybe we needed a change in our draft philosophy to some power pitching arms, I still believe we have to take a chance and grab some high profile HS pitchers in the first couple of rounds every 2-3 years.

  • In reply to cubbustible:

    Now the whole series is postponed.

  • In reply to 2016 Cubs:

    Guess I’ll go cut the grass or clean the garage....damn

  • In reply to cubbustible:

    I agree with that concept, I just see problems with the execution of punishment. As kk said, some cases may be gross negligence, while others could be coincidence. I think the punishment would have to fit the crime, so to speak, and I don't see MLB doing investigations into every outbreak to determine culpability.

    It certainly hurts teams like the Cubs and others to deal with the postponements and subsequent makeup scheduling. I can't see any way all the teams are going to play a full 60-game schedule. As of now, with no further delays, I think the DirtyBirds would have to play something like 55 games in the next 51 days. I don't see that happening.

    There has been talk of division winners and playoff seeding determined by winning percentage rather than traditional standings. That presents another set of problems and adds another mark against the legitimacy of the season.

    As of now, only tonight's game has been postponed, but I have a hard time seeing us play this weekend. There was a report that the Cubs have chartered a plane back to Chicago tonight, but that is speculation.

    I've been thinking a lot about this whole mess of a situation regarding scheduling, makeups, and standings. If we do get wiped out for the weekend, with no Game Posts or recaps to provide content, I'll try to write something up so we can all try to figure out how to make this work.

  • The main rumor I’ve heard is that Carlos Martinez went to a casino, picked up the virus there, and he’s the one who infected the team.

  • In reply to Cubs09:

    With that said, it’s just a rumor and I shouldn’t spread it. The whole thing is a bummer.

  • In reply to Cubs09:

    Well then let us just say bad, risky behavior as a member of a team results in forfeits if games are cancelled

  • Looks like MLB didn't plan for teams having a breakout of the virus, or rain outs. I guess they where fighting over money instead of trying to come up with a real plan on how to adjust when things go sideways.

    I still think if the real team gets sick, then the B team plays. That handicaps a team if they get sick.

  • fb_avatar

    As I've said before, I think teams that have to postpone games need to forfeit them. If not, we could have teams play 55 games or 53 games or 60 games. Who decides what the results are? There has to be some accountability.
    Maybe Kimbrel can use this time to try and get his arm slot fixed. I was sorry I couldn't watch the Cubs, but the Blackhawks won and that was sweet.

  • Obviously, people can be controlled in this country only to a point. Naujack has the right idea. Teams that get sick can be penalized by having to use the B team. Seems the virus is going to run its course, whether we like or not.

  • You guys are nice. We were just talking about teams that miss x number of games being sent home, then reshuffle the schedule. I like having a B team go.
    But something needs to be done. Now, those with positives get a reward - take a break and play on. Playoff spots go to best winning pct., so who cares how many you miss.

  • In reply to bruno14:

    With season being such a mutant, maybe mlb could program a postseason with 30 teams. Devise some kind of 'play in' for second division teams and go from there. Sort of College World Series format. Since baseball has gone this far getting this thing going, it needs a Championship.

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