The Cubs Won (And Not Just In My Dreams)
Between Brad’s proclamation that Tuesday’s game would be a loss, and a new comfy blanket, I didn’t end up catching much of this game from the comfort of my couch this evening. I picked up my phone after my nap, promptly commented on the wrong post on Facebook, and then took a look at the score: Cubs 4, Pirates 1, Bottom 8th.
Which meant Wade Davis was coming. Wade Davis hasn’t blown a save all year. Wade Davis is going to get us a series win, and himself a shiny franchise record (27 consecutive saves!) to boot.
Wade Davis did not disappoint, and this is likely the last nail in Pittsburgh’s hope of mounting a furious comeback to try to make the postseason (being 7 back, with 7 games against the Cubs in a short time period, there was a glimmer of hope there). Add to that, Milwaukee and St. Louis are getting a chance to pound on each other, so if they just go back and forth a bit while the Cubs keep winning…maybe they can get some distance late and coast into October. I’m not holding my breath, though.
The postgame review on Jake Arrieta’s performace weren’t real hot; his command was off, he was getting behind, all that…but he did give 6 innings scoreless, with just a couple hits and walks. Not Monday’s Mike Montgomery, but far from even the best John Lackey can give us lately. Koji Uehara did what he seems to do best–give up a dinger–coming on after Jake, which made Strop enter the game a bit early, which led to him getting himself a chance to swing the bat.
Based on the video, I think we start him in left over Kyle Schwarber.
Anyway, that’s it for this game.
Joe Maddon’s Maddening Lineup Machine
ESPN ran an article that went over Joe Maddon’s strategy for putting his lineup together day to day. tl;dr version, he uses his iPad, has a list of who he wants to use that day with color coding for their batting handedness (I guess he doesn’t keep track of their throwing hand, which might be handy), and uses a little widget of some sort to give him a number that tells him good idea or bad idea for that guy, and off he goes. All from the comfort of his hotel room.
A couple problems: this magic formula that gives him numbers that tell him whether or not he should play a guy, or it’d be a good idea, or whatever exactly that’s supposed to mean, obviously isn’t giving good weight to recent performance, and definitely not the eye test. Otherwise Kyle Schwarber wouldn’t be in the lineup every day. Other problem, lineup gets set early, everything is all set to go based on the matchups…so what does he do if the other team decides to change their starting pitcher at the last minute? That’d probably mess with any manager, but this looks like a good way to hamstring Maddon in particular.
Once again, the devastation of a hurricane will cause the Houston Astros to be relocated, similar to Hurricane Ike back in ’08. Unfortunately, the process of moving them hasn’t been the smoothest, as the Texas Rangers (who call Arlington, TX home) decided they didn’t want to just simply swap series, wanting instead to just take the Astros’ home series at their ballpark (with the provision that the money would be provided to the Astros). Naturally, the Astros didn’t want to give Texas an extra 3 games home advantage. So, the Astros will instead head to Tropicana Field for that series on neutral ground, with the possibility that their subsequent series against the Mets would also be there. Hoepfully, the city of Houston can recover enough to start getting back to normal, and all affected–including the sports teams in the area–can recover as quickly as possible.