“I have found it!” Now I’m not as good a mathematician as ol’ Archimedes was but I can put together a few numbers every now and then. Going into tonight’s game the Cubs continued to be dead last in major league baseball in runs scored. Why would that be? Well a big reason has to be the fact that they are 29th in the league in on base percentage. Yet the team is 16th in batting average! How could they be second to last in runners on base when they’re in the middle of the pack in terms of hitting the ball safely? The answer is that they don’t walk – at 2.4 bases on balls per game they are the worst team in the league at taking a free pass.
Now granted, the Cubs are 23rd in homeruns and 27th in doubles so they’re not exactly tearing it up when it comes to hitting for power. But what good are those big hits if there’s nobody on base to score when you hit ’em? This team’s offense reminds me of the hitting approach that was used by it’s manager. I remember Dusty as a Dodger, he was a free swinger, a dead first ball/fastball hitter. The problem with Dusty’s offense that he has a bunch of free-swingers. He encourages his batters to be “aggressive,” which means that they swing at a lot of pitcher’s pitches early in the count. Consequently the opponent’s starter tends to go late into the game because our team doesn’t work the pitch counts.
As a result, the Cubs don’t get to see a lot of relievers except for the eighth inning guys and closers. A lot of people will blame the loss of D Lee for this year’s offense but how much of a difference can one man really make? Barring 60+ steroid-enhanced homeruns that is. Funny how nobody’s hit near that many homeruns recently, must be the baseballs…
Oh, by the way the Cubbies lost their fourth straight. Angel Guzman pitched well, giving up one run on a homerun to Ryan Howard. The Cubs only had five baserunners including one walk. Interesting how that works.