Hello again, everybody. It almost the middle of May, and if you are reading this, you know the Baseball season is well under way. The Cubs are starting to play a bit more competitively, and if starting pitching had anything to do with baseball, the Cubs would be right up there.
Oh, starting pitching DOES have a lot to do with baseball, you say? Could’ve surprised the most diehard of Cubs fans. It is clearly not the problem, but the fact that the rotation as been so good shines a bright light on how bad all the other facets of this team have been.
So, let’s talk about that … and then some, and we will go rambling.
- Seriously, the Cubs Rotation’s ERA is in the top 5 in all of baseball, and they are 13-21.
- It is easy to argue that they should be 16-18 at worst, probably better, given an average performance by one reliever.
- Now I know every team has to deal with shaky bullpen performances, but in the Cubs situation, they are not even making their opponents earn the comeback, they are literally hitting them in the arm with the opportunities.
- I just saw that Samardzija is pitching Friday night. He owns a solid 3.09 ERA, and a ridiculously unfair 1-4 record.
- I wrote it before, and I will write it again … The Shark could have a sub-3.5 ERA and lose double-digit games. In fact, I think we would all bet on that.
- Also, The “Miller 64” commercials rhyme really well. And that is about the only relevant aspect of them.
- It has been very nice to see Rizzo raise his average to respectable so quickly. His was sub .200 not long ago and is sitting right around .270 10-12 days later. And it appears it will keep rising.
- Rizzo is tied for fourth in homers and is an outright sixth in RBI’s in the NL. That is good stuff. The 10 doubles and four swipes are just gravy.
- The fact that the Italian Stallion has more homers and RBI than Ryan Braun is also, well, that gravy stuff. (Sorry, he doesn’t have a nickname yet. I just threw that out there. I don’t totally like it. But I ask you, Cubs Faithful)
- GIVE ANTHONY RIZZO A NICKNAME. Let’s start it here, now, today. And we’ll bring it to the masses.
- Yes, I am serious … like, 73% serious.
- When I saw Gregg close the game out the other night, I just thought, “I am so glad Hendry brought him back.
- Speaking of Hendry … How about those Angels! Jerry Dipoto must have had a fifth of Scotch and thought, I know what I will do, I will follow the Jim Hendry Model of handing out hundreds of millions to past-their-prime players!
- I mean it worked for Cashman a few times. And who does Hendry work for now?
- Luis Valbuena has a .387 OBP. If you set his over/under on this stat at .350, I would struggle to think a single human out there would have taken the over. He has 16 walks and 17 strikeouts.
- On the flip side, Castro has 5 walks and 25 strikeouts.
- DeJesus has four homers, a .274 average and a plus .340 OBP … hard to say this was anything but a good signing for the Cubs. Yes, I know it is only May 10. I am just saying …
- “Travis Wood is the best pitcher in baseball.” Does Dale Sveum not know that the Cubs would have won two consecutive World Series had they not traded Sean Marshall?
- Travis Wood has started seven games. He has seven quality starts. He has a 2.33 ERA. His WHIP is 0.93. He is 3-2.
- Yea, that makes sense. Everyone can hoot and holler, but the guy has been awesome. If he keeps it up, it looks like a genius trade, and there are no two ways about that.
- Well, I guess you take away the two World Championships the Cubs would have won with Sean Marshall to make the above statement true. Okay, I am done with that now. I promise.
- Nate Schierholtz should be batting third. That is just the way it is.
- And I am pretty excited about Welington. Yes, I must remind myself it is May 10. It is only May 10.
- I will ask Neil to post this Ramblings again in late August to see how I horribly wrong or amazing right I can be. Or just extremely average.
- I was serious … let’ s give Rizzo a nickname. NOW. Let’s read everyone’s thought below. We need to get this done.
I hope this has given everyone some food-for-thought and some fodder for discussion on a beautiful Spring Friday.
And until next time …
Stay Classy Cubs Fans!!