An Enigma Wrapped in a Riddle

No one thought the Cubs were going to win the World Series this year. Not many expected the Cubs to win the division. Even fewer believed the Cubs would make the playoffs.

However, no one predicted the Cubs offense would be abysmal. Yes, there is that word again. Abysmal. How is this team this pathetic at getting grown men to run across a plastic pentagon?

The biggest problem lies in the fact, not an opinion, but a fact, that not one person involved in the organization seems to have an answer.

Granted, a ludicrous lack of production from D. Lee and Aram is a leading factor, but that is obvious. However, when you look at the numbers from the others, it just doesn’t add up.

  • Geovany Soto has a .409 OBP, but has only scored 19 runs
  • Fukudome has a .392 OBP, but has scored 23 runs

Comparatively, Skip Schumaker has a .319 OBP and has scored 29 runs. And for the record, Theriot only has 24 runs.

When broken down, it becomes obvious that the Cubs problem lies in the age-old strategy known as “timely hitting.” Trust me, it’s a good stategy. If you are not familiar with such an idea, please refer to the 2005 Chicago White Sox.

Timely hitting is also known as BA with RISP, or batting average with runners in scoring position.

For years, OPS, BABIP and all other types of stats have wound themselves into baseball lexicon. GM’s and scouts alike pour over mounds of numbers to find the right player. (By the way, where is Scott Hatteberg these days?)

However, when you break it down into simple logic, BA RISP still matters more than anything. I concede that BABIP and OPS are important measures, however, if your team is completely inept at knocking in runs, what the BLANK does it even matter. Find me someone who has a plus .300 average with runs in scoring position and I will find you an all-star.

Please don’t get confused or in position to attack my hypothesis. I am not talking about RBI’s. Or, as it should be called, R’sBI. I am simply talking about the ability to come through in the clutch. The ability to get the big hit. The 2010 Cubs are lacking this ability. It could be confidence, or a lack thereof. It could be a question of ability. Or it could be the age-old reason: choking.

I, for one, don’t know what it is, but I do know there are many members of the Cubs organization, both executives and players, getting paid big money to solve this type of problem.

Gone are the days when Lou can say, “I don’t know.” Unfortunately, Lou keeps saying, “I don’t know.”

Now I am not calling for Lou’s firing or Hendry’s firing, or anyone’s firing for that matter. I am here to ask why. I am here to ask who. And I am here to ask how.

The why and who don’t matter, but if someone doesn’t figure out the how, it is going to be a long summer at 1060 W. Addison. If that happens, and I am Mr. Lilly, Mr. Lee or Mr. Ramirez, I will have my bags packed come the end of July.

And if I Mr. Sandberg, I will prepared to do my best Mr. Jefferson come next March because I will be “Movin on Up!” Or in Brenly’s case, movin on down … from the booth.

I know you have a comment. Let me know what it is below. Have a great day, CCO Faithful, and until next time …

Stay Classy Cubs Fans!

Quote of the Day

"You can’t sit on a lead and kill the clock. You’ve got to give the other man his chance. That’s why baseball is the greatest game." - Earl Weaver