The Daily CCO: Baez Extends Hitting Streak to Seven Games and Bryant Stays Hot

The Daily CCO returns after a brief hiatus due to the announcement the Cubs are moving forward with expanding, restoring and renovating Wrigley Field. And while many spent Thursday saying, it’s about time, the neighborhood and Ald. Tom Tunney are not very happy with the team that resides on the corner of Clark and Addison.

The big league team kicked off a long road trip with a solid performance in San Diego. Jake Arrieta was very good and Anthony Rizzo hit a mammoth two-run shot that put the Cubs in the lead for good.

But the story that was being followed closely Thursday night was on the minor league level. Javier Baez is streaking and went 4-for-5 on Thursday night with two doubles, a home run and two RBI. Baez extended his hitting streak to seven games with a season-high four hits. During his streak, Javier Baez is 12-for-28 with five doubles, three home runs, one walk and four strikeouts … and three of the four strikeouts came in a single game on Wednesday (May 21). Three of Baez’s six homers this season have been hit over the last seven games.

A day after Kris Bryant hit his league leading 12th home run, Bryant went 3-for-3 on Thursday with one double, three RBI, two walks, a run scored and a stolen base. Bryant is 6-for-6 in stolen base attempts this season. In 45 games, Bryant is hitting .335/.431/.623 with 12 doubles, 12 home runs and a 1.054 OPS.

Jason Hammel

Jason Hammel does not think he will miss his start on Sunday in San Diego against Ian Kennedy. But Hammel showed up late to Wrigley Field on Wednesday with his right hand bandaged after being hit on the back of his right hand with a comebacker off the bat of Brett Gardner on Tuesday night.

X-Rays on his hand came back negative and revealed a deep bone bruise, but no break.

Jason Hammel told the beat writers when he was first hit he thought his hand exploded. Hammel could only use his left hand to pack for the Cubs  trip.

News and Notes

The Cubs have removed the mural that incorrectly featured a photo of Charles Lindbergh claiming he was part of the history of Wrigley Field.

Jose Veras is back to where he was prior to going on the disabled list according to a report from ESPN Chicago. Veras is continuing to struggle and has not pitched well since he put on a Cubs jersey.

Anthony Rizzo has more walks (35) than strikeouts (32) this year in 45 games … and a .275/.410/.463 slash line with a .873 OPS.

Carlos Villanueva’s three-inning save on Thursday night was the first three-inning save for the Cubs since Sean Gallagher in 2007. Gallagher pitched the last three innings of a game started by Carlos Zambrano. The Cubs beat Matt Cain and the Giants 12-1 at Wrigley Field.

Jeff Samardzija has changed as FanGraphs pointed out. He is more efficient and a different pitcher than in the previous two seasons.

The Sporting News’ Jesse Spector ranked Jed Hoyer as the 20th best GM in the game.

This Day In Cubstory

May 22

1991 – Andre Dawson was walked five times intentionally in a 2-1 win over the Reds in 16 innings at Wrigley Field. Dawson set the Major League record for intentional walks in a single game surpassing Roger Maris’ record (4) set in on May 22, 1962 and tied by Garry Templeton in 1985.

1985 – Pete Rose became the All-Time Leader in National League history for runs scored. Rose crossed the plate for the 2,108th time in a 7-4 Cubs win over the Reds at Wrigley Field

1983 – Cubs traded Willie Hernandez to the Phillies for Dick Ruthven and Bill Johnson

1968 – At Wrigley Field, Willie Stargell hit three home runs and just missed a fourth in a 13-6 victory over the Cubs. Stargell also hit a single and a double that afternoon in the Pirates victory.

1925 – Cubs traded a player to be named later to the Brooklyn Dodgers to Tommy Griffith. The Cubs sent Bob Barrett to the Robins as the PTBNL

1920 – The Brooklyn Robbins purchased Bill McCabe from the Cubs

1905 – The Reds purchased Shad Berry from the Cubs

May 23

1991 – Andre Dawson stole second base in the fourth inning of the game at Shea Stadium and became the third member of the 300/300 club with his 300th stolen base. Dawson had hit 354 home runs at the time joined Bobby Bonds and Willie Mays as the only three players in Major League history to accomplish the feat.

1991 – Cubs signed Amaury Telemaco

1979 – Cubs traded Ray Burris to the Yankees for Dick Tidrow

1967 – Cubs purchased Lee Elia from the Chicago White Sox

1957 – Cubs acquired Don Elston from the Brooklyn Dodgers for Jackie Sollum and Vito Valentinetti

1926 – Hack Wilson hit a fifth inning home run off the centerfield scoreboard at Wrigley Field. The scoreboard was located at ground level. The Cubs scored seven runs in the eighth inning of a 14-8 victory over the Braves. Wilson and “a few others” were arrested later that night at a friend’s apartment for drinking beer in violation of the Prohibition Act. The scoreboard was moved to left field in 1937 while the structure for the current location was being built that season.

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Quote of the Day

"The most wasted of all days is one without laughter." – E.E. Cummings

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  • mutantbeast

    Hmm-where are the Baez bashers right now? Those idiot announcers for Round Rock were Hawk Harrelson alikes who sounded jealous Baez wasnt hitting bombs for them. Looks like hes starting to adjust to AAA.

    • Ripsnorter1

      His current batting average–after the big tear–is still just .201, .270 OBP, .396 slugging.

      I am not a Baez basher, but these are still nothing to crow about.

  • chrisyygirl6218

    Hack and his friends needed the protection of Big Al. also, I knew Baez would break out of his slump so all those pundits who said he looked like another Cubs bust now have eggs off there face

  • JasonOfTheBurbs

    I regret the Sean Gallagher trade about as much as I regret the Andrew Cashner and Chris Archer trades…which is to say none have come back to hurt the Cubs yet.

    Gallagher netted us Rich Harden, who I marked out for as he would put up 10 K’s just about every time he pitched it seemed.

    Cashner gave us Rizzo, who will probably put in 8 years with the Cubs when all said and done with solid OBP, HRs, and defense.

    Archer netted us Garza which netted us Olt and whatever upside CJ Edwards has.

    win win win.

    • GaryLeeT

      I hope you are not as fast on the draw with the woman in your life as you are putting Rizzo, Olt, and CJ Edwards in the HOF. I would think at least 3 years of sustained success, or failure, would be needed to make a fair assessment.

      • Tony_H

        I didn’t see him say any of them were even All-Stars let alone HOF guys.

        • GaryLeeT

          Are you Jason’s mommy?

  • JasonOfTheBurbs

    Dawson in 1991 was still good but not as dominant as Dawson in 1987…a bit surprised he was respected enough for 5 intentional walks in one game (albeit extra innings). That is crazy. I would have guessed roided up Bonds would have had that record.

  • Tony_H

    Just read this.

    Only 2 teams have at least 5 WAR from their starting pitchers.

    Detroit Tigers 6.0
    Chicago Cubs 5.4

    Samardzija 7th
    Jackson 10th
    Hammel 12th
    Wood 21st

    Once again, the FO has put together a rotation that keeps the Cubs in most games.

    • JasonOfTheBurbs

      Sure. But 2 of those guys are expected to be traded, so are we celebrating their ability to put together a rotation for 1/2 a year, or a full year?

      Reality is their main focus was signing Hammel to flip for prospects.
      And I think that was their plan with EJax, until his horrible season last year made that difficult.

      I will support the FO winning awards when their pitching staff is good for a whole year. Oh, and when they have, at minimum, a winning record.

      • Tony_H

        Just can’t accept that they do anything well. To me it shows that with Bosio as pitching coach, they have the ability to build a rotation that can get them to the playoffs. Their seems to be this thought that you have to have all of these TOR arms in your system to make the playoffs, but they keep showing they can assemble a rotation, trade away 40% of it each year and rebuild it again the next year.

        A perfect rotation has a 1 a 2, a 3, a 4 and a 5 which totals 15 if you add them up. A rotation full of 2/3 and 3/4 guys can add up to 15 as well and help you make the playoffs.

        • JasonOfTheBurbs

          I agreed and said “sure”.
          Just not going to pat them on the back for doing it during seasons that the team is obviously not competitive. I will judge them on how their rotation does when they are finally a competitive team and over .500 at the end of a year.

          Otherwise it is akin to looking at a player’s minor league or ST numbers and projecting it over a full major league season. It may happen that way, but only time will tell.

        • John_CC

          Good point. With any sort of consistent offense, and a bullpen that did not lose 6 games in the first couple weeks, this team would be .500.

          With a good offense, like the one they are building, and good bullpen, also like is being developed, around this rotation would be a winning team.

        • GaryLeeT

          • Tony_H

            This is the voice I hear when I read your posts.

      • John_CC

        That is aside from the point. You, like at one other here, always always have to try rebut every post Tony makes as quickly as possible.

        If they trade every single pitcher tomorrow it doesn’t not change the point Tony made that Epstein, Hoyer, Bosio et al are really good at putting together a rotation from what most assume is a scrap heap.

        • Tony_H

          There is only one other one???

          • John_CC

            “At least” one. You have some very dedicated followers! 😉

        • JasonOfTheBurbs

          Tony tends to reply and argue my posts as much as I do his…I haven’t been keeping count, but pretty sure about that.

          They inherited Samardzija.
          They signed EJax, who will hopefully keep pitching well, but outside of past few starts has been widely panned as a poor signing in retrospect. So jury is out on that.
          Wood they got in a trade…gave away a good Sean Marshall…props to them for seeing something in Wood, and it paid off.
          Hammel, like Feldman (and Maholm) has panned out.
          Scott Baker, not so much.

          But Hendry was a huge reclamation project guy, and he hit on a few as well, such as Dempster. His crew even got 10 wins out of Carlos Silva, which is hard to do.

          • John_CC

            Again, this is a non sequitur. What does it matter what Hendry or anyone else has done? It has no relevance. No one said the Epstein et al are the only people that have had success.

            Hammel, Feldman, Maholm, Wood vs. Baker. OK, 4:1 ratio is excellent, anyone would take that every time.

          • JasonOfTheBurbs

            ok. you win.

            Just curious though: since they couldn’t pay enough for Tanaka, and won’t pay Samardzija Ace dollars, and they have shown they can get cheap and effective reclamation projects every year, is the plan when they start winning to just turn over the rotation every 1-2 years with a new slate of reclamation projects, or will they ever sign any of them to more than 1 year?

            If you assume Baez and Bryant make it, and Olt sticks, and you have Castro and Rizzo at affordable prices, and Castillo won’t ever break the bank, and if some combination of Almora/Lake/Kalish along with their tendency for reclamation projects at the OF positions continue, just what exactly are they going to spend money on?

            I guess the answer will be “signing their own talent” to Castro-like contracts. Ok…but that is a pretty low payroll for the next 3 years, and then even as they sign their own players to extentions, it is still a cheap payroll.

            Maybe they spend money when the 2019 tv contracts roll in?

          • Tony_H

            Is there a reason they have to spend money just to spend it? The ability to spend is the key and then spending it when it makes sense and improves the team.

          • JasonOfTheBurbs

            Yes…to justify their ticket prices.

          • Tony_H

            If they put that roster together that you said and won a World Series with it, you would still want them to go out and spend money on a free agent, to justify ticket prices?

          • JasonOfTheBurbs

            They could lower their prices to reflect their payroll. If they cared about the non-tourist fan experience.

          • Tony_H

            Or they could use it to sign guys like Baez and Bryant to extensions and give out a chunk of the contract in a signing bonus. They could use to win a bid for a Tanaka type player who needs a big up front payment to a Japanese team.

            To me, ticket prices should reflect the supply and demand of the tickets.

          • Denver Mike

            I’m sorry Jason, and I don’t necessarily think it’s right, but in the capitalist America we live in today that will never happen.

            Purely coincidental, but I was just reviewing T&Cs on a purchase order we entered today and had to go back to the customer to have them remove the following clause:

            “Any reduction in Seller’s costs of providing goods from those in force on the date of the Order shall be paid to the Buyer by Seller in reduction of the price of Goods ordered herein.”

            …and this is consistent with most every legal department I have worked with in large businesses in my career. People don’t just give money away when the market bears a higher price.

          • Eugene Debs

            That’s like asking “what if they sign a Unicorn?” We are not close to a World Series, so building it this way can’t be linked to success. Yet.

            I find that pitching is easier to get than consistent every day players.

          • Tony_H

            Somehow I think a unicorn is not like anything we could sign in the FA market.

          • Eugene Debs

            I’d bat the Unicorn in the #2 hole in front of Rizzo.

          • GaryLeeT

            The only time money is foolishly spent is when the GM doesn’t know what he’s doing. If money spent, improves the product on the field, provides a better entertainment value for the fans, says to other potential FAs “hey come play here”, and cuts the time to contention, then I just don’t see the down side of that.

    • John_CC

      Why don’t you stop making all this stuff up Tony…er stop reading all this made up stuff. Samardzija has Zero Wins, so obviously he cannot be 7th. Duh. :0

      • Tony_H

        LOL! If Samardzija’s season so far doesn’t show everyone that pitchers W’s don’t show you how a guy has been pitching, nothing will.

        • John_CC

          If you haven’t yet, be sure to read the article Neil linked above.

          • Tony_H

            I skimmed it, but figured out it wasn’t an article I could skim over. I will have to do it later when I am not doing 3 other things.

        • GaryLeeT

          So starting pitchers who consistently win the most games, don’t make the most money? For short periods of time he can get away without winning, but in the end he still has to put up the Ws, and it’s still the measure of greatness. So says the HOF

          • Tony_H

            I didn’t say a thing about money or the HOF, I said that W’s don’t show you how a guy has been pitching.

          • GaryLeeT

            And I said, eventually, and in the long run, it does.

    • Ripsnorter1

      If we had an offense, we’d be competitive.

  • John_CC

    That is a great article at Fangraphs re: Jeff Shark. Thanks for that link Neil.

  • Bryan

    All this online chatter over “who’s right/who’s wrong”, up and comers, busts, etc. Things were just must simpler when we used to turn on the transistor radio and listen to Vince/Lou broadcast a game, without all the outside analysis. It’s just a sport. Let’s enjoy baseball, rooting for our North siders, regardless of the outcome.

    • GaryLeeT

      Really? I think the banter is a great diversion from the reality of a last place team, going nowhere this season. And how boring would it be if everybody saw everything the same way? Besides, where would we all be without Neil, and his contributor’s outside analysis?

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