View From The Bleachers

Talking Cubs Baseball Since 2003

Wednesday

4

June 2014

57

COMMENTS

Cubs 2, Mets 1 – Game Thoughts

Written by , Posted in General

MVP – Zack Wheeler (.443 WPA)

When you’re team isn’t very good, it’s nice to have an off day. I enjoyed not having a game on the schedule on Monday, but I was ready to get back in there on Tuesday and was rewarded for my fandom with a win.

Prior to the game, there were a couple roster moves. Hector Rondon was activated from the paternity list, which meant someone had to go. Part of me actually wondered if the Cubs would consider carrying a nine man bullpen, as if an eight men pen wasn’t bad enough. Thankfully when the release came in, it included a move to remove a reliever. Jose Veras was designated for assignment. In case you need a quick refresher on what that means, here is the quick and dirty.

A player who is designated for assignment is taken off the 40 man roster immediately and placed in baseball purgatory for 10 days where one of four things can happen to them. In Veras case, let’s take a look at how they may play out.

Scenario 1 – Place the player on waivers – This is a given, but there is not a guarantee anyone will claim him. Given his inexpensive contract and the fact he’s only locked up for this year, I would think there would be someone interested in taking a shot on him. It’s a low risk, high reward given his history. If he’s claimed, he becomes the property of the claiming team and they assume his contract.

Scenario 2 – Trade the player – I don’t see this one happening, as teams know the Cubs have little leverage and need to move him.

Scenario 3 – Release the player – If released, the Cubs would pay the remainder of his contract and part ways.

Scenario 4 – Outright the player to the Minor Leagues – This one assumes the player has cleared waivers without being claimed. Because of the amount of service time in the Majors that Veras has, he has the ability to refuse the assignment and request his release. In other words, this scenario won’t happen.

The Cubs also placed Welington Castillo on the DL with left rib cage inflammation. The move is retroactive to June 2. In his place, the Cubs selected the contract of Eli Whiteside, who is old and bad. Move along, nothing to see here.

As far as the game itself, there were a couple takeaways. Jake Arrieta continues to get hitters out, but working deep into games is a frequent problem for him. He either gets into a jam, which drives the pitch count up or he works deep into counts on hitters. For strikeout pitchers this is a frequent issue for them early in the career. They look to announce their presence with authority and try to strike everyone out. I’ve not watched Arrieta’s starts close enough to know if it’s a lack of command or just an aversion to pitching to contact, but it bares watching going forward if he’s one that is being counted on for this rotation in the future.

Offensively, the Cubs were their usual offensive self, and by that I mean that I’m offended by their lack of offense. It wasn’t until the Mets bullpen took over that we were able to do anything at the plate and even then only managed two runs.

Nate Schierholtz got the game winning walk-off RBI single and the AP story read like this:

Schierholtz was one of the few dependable hitters in Cubs lineup a season ago. Now, he is starting to show signs he can shake out of an early season rut.

“I know I’m a better player than I showed the first few months. That wasn’t me. I knew it was going to come around. It took longer than I hoped, obviously I still have a lot to do in the next four months, but I’m confident and that’s all that matters,” said Schierholtz, who was 3 for 4 to move his average up to .224 from .212.

Schierholtz hit .251 with home 21 homers last season for the Cubs.

Wow, there is a lot there. Apparently if you get the game winning hit, it means you’ve turned the corner on your season. The statement that he was one of the most dependent hitters in the lineup last year coupled with the stats he put up at the end shows just how bad we were. Unfortunately, this offense isn’t going to get any better until the kids arrive. On a positive note, Kris Bryant hit his 19th home run last night. Edwin Jackson pitches tonight, so the Cubs will have to rely on Travis Wood in the finale to get a series win.

  • Mark_from_Toronto

    While watching last night’s game I noticed that Arrieta wears Carlos Marmol’s old number (49) on his jersey. Based on this, I became convinced there was no chance of victory for the Cubs, fortunately they surprised me with a victory afterall. Perhaps Jake might want to consider another number going forward.

    • Eddie Von White

      I’m surprised you stayed up to watch the game. Your optimism must have been running high.

      • Mark_from_Toronto

        Unfortunately my optimism was not as high as you think, I didn’t stay up to watch the whole game. I only discovered they won this morning when checking the scores. I actually long for the days when I have enough optimism to actually stay up and watch an entire game on a weeknight.

  • Mark_from_Toronto

    While watching last night’s game I noticed that Arrieta wears Carlos Marmol’s old number (49) on his jersey. Based on this, I became convinced there was no chance of victory for the Cubs, fortunately they surprised me with a victory afterall. Perhaps Jake might want to consider another number going forward.

    • Eddie Von White

      I’m surprised you stayed up to watch the game. Your optimism must have been running high.

      • Mark_from_Toronto

        Unfortunately my optimism was not as high as you think, I didn’t stay up to watch the whole game. I only discovered they won this morning when checking the scores. I actually long for the days when I have enough optimism to actually stay up and watch an entire game on a weeknight.

  • SouthKakalakiCubsFan

    How about for once, just once, we win the first game of a series and then actually end up winning the series. This winning game one crap, then losing the next 2 or 3 games in a row sux.

    • Doc Raker

      Na, just doesn’t work.

    • PLCB3

      That would require more pitchers in the No Homers Club and less batters in the No Homers Club. Unfortunately, this team has too many batters in the No Homers Club and not enough pitchers in the No Homers Club.

    • Doc Raker

      You jinxed it, the Cubs won a series, going for the sweep on Thursday.

      • SouthKakalakiCubsFan

        hey hey, would ya looky there………sweep!

  • SouthKakalakiCubsFan

    How about for once, just once, we win the first game of a series and then actually end up winning the series. This winning game one crap, then losing the next 2 or 3 games in a row sux.

    • Doc Raker

      Na, just doesn’t work.

    • AC0000000

      That would require more pitchers in the No Homers Club and less batters in the No Homers Club. Unfortunately, this team has too many batters in the No Homers Club and not enough pitchers in the No Homers Club.

    • Doc Raker

      You jinxed it, the Cubs won a series, going for the sweep on Thursday.

      • SouthKakalakiCubsFan

        hey hey, would ya looky there………sweep!

  • PLCB3

    Thanks for explaining the difference between waiver and release. So now why would a team release a player when there is a chance to be free of the contract by waiving him when both get rid of the player?

  • AC0000000

    Thanks for explaining the difference between waiver and release. So now why would a team release a player when there is a chance to be free of the contract by waiving him when both get rid of the player?

  • Doc Raker

    I was listening to the Met’s broadcast and they were recounting all the missed opportunities the Met’s blew early in the game and how they should dog won this game against the team with the worst record in the league.

    I like listening to th opposing teams broadcast for several reasons.
    1) I don’t have to listen to Len Kasper.
    2) They have more insight into the game then Len Kasper.
    3) They are sincere in the comments about the Cubs, good or bad, because they answer to no one regarding there comments about the Cubs, i.e. no corporate agenda- unlike Len Kasper.
    4) It makes the game more enjoyable unlike Len Kasper who makes the game less enjoyable.
    5) I don’t have to listen to Len Kasper.

    The Met’s broadcasters were complementary to our bullpen and to Rizzo. Ron Darling noted Starlin Castro’s undisciplined approach at the plate in the 8th inning, “He takes for 2-0 and then swings at that, so undisciplined.”

    Ron Darling actually said, “Thanks to all the Cubs fans who tuned in to avoid a Len Kasper broadcast, we feel your pain and appreciate you tuning in to our broadcast.”

    • Eddie Von White

      I’m starting to get the impression you don’t care for Len Kasper.

      • Doc Raker

        I am sure he is a fine person and I would enjoy knowing him but I prefer to listen to broadcasters who have some insight into the game of baseball more than just an understanding of statistics. Len is a saber guy, he understands statistics but doesn’t ever recognize or explain the adjustments ballplayers make or need to make to change those statistics.

        Example: Anthony Rizzo has shown marked improvement in his approach to his at bats. It has been noticeable, it would be a great topic of conversation for a broadcaster to point out a ball players adjustments to make improvements. Len can only point out Rizzo’s improved stats after a certain sample size has been met. Len has no insight during those at bats, doesn’t point out Rizzo’s improved approach to left field, doesn’t talk about a pitcher that will work Rizzo the other way and how last year it would get Rizzo out but not this year. Len doesn’t mention Rizzo will get more pitches to drive to right because of his improved approach to left field therefore increasing his home run total. Len will only tell us about a stat that shows Rizzo’s improvement.

        If I recognize things in a baseball game that are never talked about by the broadcaster that broadcaster is lousy. When I listen to Krukow I learn about the game and the players, that makes the game much more enjoyable for me.

      • PLCB3

        Jim DeShais, Dan Roan sound-alike just used a line I use a lot when he brought up the transitive property.

    • Doug S.

      I think Doc’s Len Kasper bobblehead doll’s got a few voodoo needles in it.

      • Doc Raker

        Will you sign my “Fire Len Kasper” petition?

      • Doug S.

        Not if Chip Caray is the replacement.

  • Dork

    Yes thanks alot for taking the time to explain DFA.

    • Doc Raker

      Can you put that on a spreadsheet?

      • Dork

        I thought it was laid out nicly in the bullets, but I could attach probability in the spreadsheet.

  • Doc Raker

    I was listening to the Met’s broadcast and they were recounting all the missed opportunities the Met’s blew early in the game and how they should dog won this game against the team with the worst record in the league.

    I like listening to th opposing teams broadcast for several reasons.
    1) I don’t have to listen to Len Kasper.
    2) They have more insight into the game then Len Kasper.
    3) They are sincere in the comments about the Cubs, good or bad, because they answer to no one regarding there comments about the Cubs, i.e. no corporate agenda- unlike Len Kasper.
    4) It makes the game more enjoyable unlike Len Kasper who makes the game less enjoyable.
    5) I don’t have to listen to Len Kasper.

    The Met’s broadcasters were complementary to our bullpen and to Rizzo. Ron Darling noted Starlin Castro’s undisciplined approach at the plate in the 8th inning, “He takes for 2-0 and then swings at that, so undisciplined.”

    Ron Darling actually said, “Thanks to all the Cubs fans who tuned in to avoid a Len Kasper broadcast, we feel your pain and appreciate you tuning in to our broadcast.”

    • Eddie Von White

      I’m starting to get the impression you don’t care for Len Kasper.

      • Doc Raker

        I am sure he is a fine person and I would enjoy knowing him but I prefer to listen to broadcasters who have some insight into the game of baseball more than just an understanding of statistics. Len is a saber guy, he understands statistics but doesn’t ever recognize or explain the adjustments ballplayers make or need to make to change those statistics.

        Example: Anthony Rizzo has shown marked improvement in his approach to his at bats. It has been noticeable, it would be a great topic of conversation for a broadcaster to point out a ball players adjustments to make improvements. Len can only point out Rizzo’s improved stats after a certain sample size has been met. Len has no insight during those at bats, doesn’t point out Rizzo’s improved approach to left field, doesn’t talk about a pitcher that will work Rizzo the other way and how last year it would get Rizzo out but not this year. Len doesn’t mention Rizzo will get more pitches to drive to right because of his improved approach to left field therefore increasing his home run total. Len will only tell us about a stat that shows Rizzo’s improvement.

        If I recognize things in a baseball game that are never talked about by the broadcaster that broadcaster is lousy. When I listen to Krukow I learn about the game and the players, that makes the game much more enjoyable for me.

      • AC0000000

        Jim DeShais, Dan Roan sound-alike just used a line I use a lot when he brought up the transitive property.

    • Doug S.

      I think Doc’s Len Kasper bobblehead doll’s got a few voodoo needles in it.

      • Doc Raker

        Will you sign my “Fire Len Kasper” petition?

      • Doug S.

        Not if Chip Caray is the replacement.

  • Dork

    Yes thanks alot for taking the time to explain DFA.

    • Doc Raker

      Can you put that on a spreadsheet?

      • Dork

        I thought it was laid out nicly in the bullets, but I could attach probability in the spreadsheet.

  • Dork

    It was nice to see Scheirholtz contribute. He is a carreer 725 ops guy. This year is out of line with his carreer numbers at 590 which is Barney like. 725 is probably just a little above replacement. Last year his OPS was in the 775 area and people were guessing/hoping that the regular AB’s helped. Intersestingly if you look at the combined 2013-2014 season he is at 725 OPS. Regression over 2 seasons?

  • Dork

    It was nice to see Scheirholtz contribute. He is a carreer 725 ops guy. This year is out of line with his carreer numbers at 590 which is Barney like. 725 is probably just a little above replacement. Last year his OPS was in the 775 area and people were guessing/hoping that the regular AB’s helped. Intersestingly if you look at the combined 2013-2014 season he is at 725 OPS. Regression over 2 seasons?

  • Dork

    No alot of Edwin Jackson love, but the Mets lineup is not that much better than the cubs. Maybe we get “good Edwin”

  • Dork

    No alot of Edwin Jackson love, but the Mets lineup is not that much better than the cubs. Maybe we get “good Edwin”

  • Dork

    One more thought, I know their really were no other options, but it sucks that when the cubs called someone up, it is a guy hiting 171 at AAA. Really guys? Cant Alcantera or Baez catch?

    • Dusty_Baylor

      Or bring up Rafael Lopez instead?

      • R-Lo?

      • Dork

        R-Lo or Arlo or Are low? As in the BA of these players ARE LOW.

  • Dork

    One more thought, I know their really were no other options, but it sucks that when the cubs called someone up, it is a guy hiting 171 at AAA. Really guys? Cant Alcantera or Baez catch?

    • Dusty_Baylor

      Or bring up Rafael Lopez instead?

      • R-Lo?

      • Dork

        R-Lo or Arlo or Are low? As in the BA of these players ARE LOW.

  • Doc Raker

    The Met’s broadcast was questioning the move to leave left handed hitting Chris Coghlan into to hit against a lefty in the 8th inning. They noted that Coghlan has not hit a home run off a left handed pitcher since 2010.

    After Coghlan went yard they were lamenting the rare Coghlan home run off a lefty………….the last time he did that in 2010 it was off……the Mets also.

    Also was heavily noted and lamented was that both 9th inning hits, Rizzo’s and Schierholtz, were on an 0-2 pitch.

    Obviously I wasn’t listening to Len’s call of the Coghlan at bat but I would assume it went something like, “Ball 1. Jimmy Buffett is in town next week, great seats still available. Strike 1 on the outside corner. I love that Margaritaville. Curve ball outside, 2-1.” DeShaies, “that’s a tough curve ball on a lefty hitter.” Len, “How many hits does Jimmy Buffett have?” DeShaies, “The Cubs just not getting much offense tonight, we need a base runner here.” Len, “Sirius XM radio has it’s own station devoted to Jimmy Buffett, I love listening to XM, the Bruce Springsteen station is pretty good to, love that sax player. There’s a deep drive, that could be, it’s outta here, 1-1 tie game. Why they took the Led Zeppelin station off XM I will never know, those guys are the best ever.”

    Deshaies, “A rare lefty lefty home run for Coghlan.” Len, “I hope we don’t go into extra innings, Boy George is on Jimmy Falon tonight.”

    • Kim in cognito

      So I hear you’re from Huntington Beach…Do you know Hugh Grant?… Eddie Murphy?

      • Doug S.

        Swanson, is that you?

      • Seymour Butts

        Doug, I’m disappointed. You need to buy a scorecard.

  • Doc Raker

    The Met’s broadcast was questioning the move to leave left handed hitting Chris Coghlan into to hit against a lefty in the 8th inning. They noted that Coghlan has not hit a home run off a left handed pitcher since 2010.

    After Coghlan went yard they were lamenting the rare Coghlan home run off a lefty………….the last time he did that in 2010 it was off……the Mets also.

    Also was heavily noted and lamented was that both 9th inning hits, Rizzo’s and Schierholtz, were on an 0-2 pitch.

    Obviously I wasn’t listening to Len’s call of the Coghlan at bat but I would assume it went something like, “Ball 1. Jimmy Buffett is in town next week, great seats still available. Strike 1 on the outside corner. I love that Margaritaville. Curve ball outside, 2-1.” DeShaies, “that’s a tough curve ball on a lefty hitter.” Len, “How many hits does Jimmy Buffett have?” DeShaies, “The Cubs just not getting much offense tonight, we need a base runner here.” Len, “Sirius XM radio has it’s own station devoted to Jimmy Buffett, I love listening to XM, the Bruce Springsteen station is pretty good to, love that sax player. There’s a deep drive, that could be, it’s outta here, 1-1 tie game. Why they took the Led Zeppelin station off XM I will never know, those guys are the best ever.”

    Deshaies, “A rare lefty lefty home run for Coghlan.” Len, “I hope we don’t go into extra innings, Boy George is on Jimmy Falon tonight.”

    • Kim in cognito

      So I hear you’re from Huntington Beach…Do you know Hugh Grant?… Eddie Murphy?

      • Doug S.

        Swanson, is that you?