The Daily CCO: Whole Lotta Swingin’ Going On, Weekend Headlines and Other Cubs News

It was a rather busy weekend for the Chicago Cubs and an excitement around the team that has been missing with Javier Baez making his Wrigley Field debut. The Cubs salvaged the finale against the Rays with yet another extra innings game, the sixth time in 12 games it took more than nine innings to decide the outcome.

Javier Baez went 4-for-15 over the weekend with a double, a RBI and nine strikeouts. Baez has hit safely in five of his first six games (.276/.276/.621) with four extra base hits and a .897 OPS.

As a team, the Cubs struck out 44 times in the three games against the Rays and tied the record of the most strikeouts in a three-game stretch in the Modern Era (1900). Saturday and Sunday also marked the first time since 1914 a Cubs team struck out 15 or more times in back-to-back games.

A lot is being made about the amount of swinging and missing the Cubs did over the weekend against an excellent Rays pitching staff. But as the prospects are promoted from the minors and integrated onto the Major League roster, the strikeouts will continue to pile up for the Cubs as players such as Javier Baez, Arismendy Alcantara, Jorge Soler and Kris Bryant learn how to hit Major League pitching.

Ryan Kalish

The Cubs announced Sunday that Ryan Kalish passed through waivers and was outrighted to Triple-A Iowa. The Cubs designated Kalish for assignment Friday to make room on the roster for RHP Jacob Turner.

PrintRyan Kalish made the Cubs roster out of Spring Training but in 39 games, Kalish hit only .242/.303/.330 with two doubles and three triples for a .633 OPS. Kalish was optioned to Triple-A Iowa on May 26 but he did not hit while receiving regular playing time. In 67 games, Kalish managed a .219/.306/.367 line with 11 doubles, three triples and five home runs.

Ryan Kalish can become a free agent at the end of the season.

Cubs Bullpen

The usage of the bullpen arms remains a concern for the Cubs with 20 days left before the roster expands for the final month of the season. Brian Schlitter was placed on the 15-day DL prior to Sunday’s game with shoulder inflammation to make room on the roster for Neil Ramirez, whose DL stint was seen as more of a break than an actual injury.

Rick Renteria admitted to Bruce Levine that handling the bullpen “has probably been the most challenging part of the job” and making sure the young arms have not been overworked has been the reason the Cubs have stayed with an eight-man bullpen for a majority of the year.

The Cubs’ pen currently consists of Hector Rondon, Pedro Strop, Neil Ramirez, Justin Grimm, Wesley Wright, Kyuji Fujikawa, Carlos Villanueva and Jacob Turner. With one scheduled day off (Aug. 25) until the roster expands Sept. 1, the relief corps would benefit from the starters at least completing six innings and pitching into the seventh inning each time out.

News and Notes

Left handed hitters are batting .143/.182/.143 against LHP Tsuyoshi Wada in a small sample size at the Major League level this season.

The Cubs have played free baseball in six of the last 12 games, the first such stretch since the Cubs played six extra innings games out of 12 from June 9-20, 1983.

Arismendy Alcantara has come a long way in a short time in centerfield. Sunday marked the 23rd time this season, between Triple-A Iowa and the Majors, that Alcantara played the outfield. And he’s adjusting rather well according to his skipper. Rick Renteria told ESPN Chicago he is “reading a ball off the bat and his reaction time is very good.” Alcantara showed off his range in center during the weekend series against the Rays, but he realizes he still has work to do in center as he learns the position.

Kris Bryant extended his hitting streak to 13 games Sunday and is batting .364/.553/.788 in his last 10 games with two doubles, four home runs, 11 walks, 12 strikeouts and a 1.341 OPS.

Jorge Soler has 11 hits in his last 10 games and eight of those have gone for extra bases (five doubles, three home runs). Soler is batting .309/.433/.709 in 18 games with Iowa. Soler is 17-for-55 with seven doubles, five home runs, 12 walks, 12 strikeouts and a 1.142 OPS.

Mike Olt smacked three home runs in two games (Saturday and Sunday) and is batting .338/.372/.649 with eight doubles, five home runs, four walks, 23 strikeouts and a 1.020 OPS in 19 games with Iowa.

Addison Russell has hit safely in eight of his last 10 games and is now batting .308/.357/.556 in 31 games with Double-A Tennessee with five doubles, eight home runs and a .913 OPS. And over his last 10 games, three walks and six strikeouts.

Jacob Turner is excited for a fresh start with the Cubs.

The Cubs are trying to help Junior Lake get back on track.

Chris Valaika hopes he gets a chance to stick with the Cubs according to a report from Tony Andracki. Valaika likes his role with the team and wants to be part of the Cubs rebuild moving forward.

Weekend Headlines

It was a rather busy weekend for the Cubs. From Javier Baez’s home debut, to the roster moves, to the Phillies pulling Cole Hamels back from waiver to Jason McLeod discussing the farm system, and it all began with a little rambling.

This Day In Cubstory

2010 – Cubs traded Mike Fontenot to the Giants for Evan Crawford

2006 – Cubs signed free agent Mac Suzuki

2005 – Gregg Maddux tossed a complete game against the Cardinals and snapped the Cubs eight-game losing streak. Maddux posted the 314th win of his career.

2003 – Kerry Wood became the youngest pitcher in Major League history to reach the 1,000 strikeout mark. Wood set the record in 134 games. The Cubs lost to the Astros 3-1.

2002 – Sammy Sosa hit a grand slam and a run scoring double against the Rockies and set a National League record with 14 RBI in a two-game stretch. The Padres’ Nate Colbert (1972) and the Cardinals’ Mark Whiten (1993) held the previous record (13).

1981 – Cubs traded Jesus Figueroa, Jerry Martin and Mike Turgeon to the Giants for Phil Nastu and Joe Strain

1972 – Milt Pappas drove in five runs with a single, a double and a home run in the Cubs 7-2 victory over the Mets at Wrigley Field

1968 – Billy Williams hit two home runs, a three-run inside the park homer in the 15th inning and a two-run homer in the sixth. Don Kessinger recorded five hits in seven trips to the plate as the Cubs beat the Reds 8-5 in Cincinnati

1966 – Randy Hundley hit for the cycle and drove in three runs in the Cubs 9-8 victory over the Astros at Wrigley Field

1961 – Warren Spahn beat the Cubs 3-1 in Milwaukee for the 300th win of his career

1941 – Phil Cavarretta, Stan Hack and Bill Nicholson went back-to-back-to-back in the fifth inning, but the Cubs lost 7-5 to the Cardinals at Sportsman’s Park. The three-straight homers in the fifth inning marked the first time in Cubs history three players hit three consecutive longballs.

Follow ChicagoCubsOnline on Twitter: @TheCCO and @TheCCO_Minors

Quote of the Day

"The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes but in having new eyes." - Marcel Proust

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  • DWalker

    Olt confuses me. he never tore up the minors, he failed in the majors and now he is back at AAA hitting like he’s never hit before at a top prospect level. I just wish we had some idea if he is an AAAA player or if he really has a chance at a legit major league career. I kinda wonder if he still had some lingering issues to start the season, totally lost confidence and now that he’s at AAA after seeing MLB pitching its all finally clicked and he realizes he can hit the ball.

    • No Baseball In Indiana

      Yeah it would be nice to see how he’s being pitched. I suspect he’s seeing more fastballs and less breaking stuff, or at least not plus off speed pitches.

    • BigJonLilJon

      Was about to say the same thing. He needs up with every day playing time to find out if he’s a AAAA player or a major leaguer

    • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

      Randy Wehofer, the I-Cubs play-by-play man, says Olt looks like a different player at the plate than the one he saw last year. Olt is making solid contact with Iowa and several of his strikeouts have been called third strikes on 3-2 pitches.

      • Larry Schwimmer

        Thanks for sharing that insight Neil. As I said in a previous post: Mike Olt is a very talented 3rd Baseman and has just the kind of HR power you want in a 3rd Baseman. I really want him to succeed an hope that he’s made the adjustments he needs and has re-built his confidence. I

        Do you agree that he’s likely to be called up in September and given a chance to play on a daily basis and show the CUBS whether he can be their future 3rd Baseman? I know that THEO loves him and his power. What say you?

        • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

          Larry, Olt will be up in Sept. as for playing everyday at third, I doubt it. I would like to see them give him reps in left field and in right field to see if he could fill a bench role down the road if he’s not able to make consistent contact in the majors. He can handle third base, that is not the problem.

    • John_CC

      I don’t know, his Babip is an insane .435. His 2012 AA season that put him on the top prospect chart with Texas, his Babip was .327. So yeah, he is definitely squaring up the ball but somethings got to give.

      Also his BB rate is 5%, while his K rate is still 30%. I guess the lack of walks makes sense since he’s hitting everything close, except that K rate is still high. Back to that 2012 season, he walked 14.5% and K’d just 24% … now that is impressive! Which is what made the Cubs hope they got a steal and could help him regain that awesome approach. But he hasn’t shown anything close to that again.

      Weird.

      • BigJonLilJon

        The difference between AA and AAA pitching. Plus.. I wonder if the walk % was due to being pitched around more often??

        • John_CC

          If that is the case, then he doesn’t stand a chance. I mean if the drop off is that extreme between AA and AAA due to his inability to adjust to better pitchers, then the drop off between AAA and ML would be even greater. So maybe he is the guy that was with the Cubs. Is that what you are saying?

          • BigJonLilJon

            Not exactly. Am saying that with out regular playing time in the ML’s, we aren’t going to know who the “real” Mike Olt is. Yes he killed AA pitching. Probably was pitched around more therefore the higher walk rate. He didn’t spend much time in AAA and when he did he was dealing with the eye thing, so I don’t include his 1st AAA stint. He didn’t get enough playing time on the Cubs and now he is killing AAA. I (and Board) believe in Olt. But the unbiased question remains to be answered… is he a AAAA player or a ML’r

          • John_CC

            I wonder the same thing. I was just trying to use stats to show that his offensive surge is a bit of smoke and mirrors right now. A .435 Babip is unrealistic and unsustainable. By using his AA numbers I was simply pointing to a baseline, when he was raking his Babip was .325 which is in line with a solid contact hitter.

            As far as being pitched around, I don’t that really is the case so much in AA. Was Javy pitched around enough to have a great BB%? He was a far more dangerous hitter than Olt was but had a BB rate of under 8%.

            Olt used to be a much better hitter, with a much better patience. Maybe he is over-matched now and swings at pitches he used to recognize as balls. It would explain his woes.

    • cubtex

      not sure if anyone posted this article on Turner but here it is.

      http://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/instagraphs/a-reason-for-pessimism-about-jacob-turner/

      • BigJonLilJon

        Article was pretty pointless and conclusions drawn by writer based on dated info. But the comment section where folks were dissing the article was funny!

        • cubtex

          alot of that saber mumbo jumbo is a bunch of meaningless and pointless conclusions regardless :) The one thing to take out of it is that he has trouble striking lefties out or getting swings and misses. The real change with Turner over the last year is the slider. I’m with Bowden. Scrap the slider and go back to the heat and deuce. 2 pitches and have him work strictly in the pen. See if you can get him going there first and then try him back(if successful) as a starter. He has youth on his side.

          • DWalker

            and right now the cubs are the perfect place for that. they can use the reliver, they have a coach that turns around reclamation projects for breakfast (at least til they leave) and they aren’t in a pennant race so if he does have a few rough outings on the way its not a big cost. If he shows any signs of life this fall, I bet hes given a shot in spring training as a starter.

          • BigJonLilJon

            No loss of velocity on fast ball being reported. Just needs to use it more to set up the slider and not the other way around is what it sounds like. I like the pick up. Think it could turn out well.

          • cubtex

            agreed

          • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

            That seems smart to me ST…

      • SirGladiator

        Thanks for the article. It’s interesting, but really it’s hard to learn a ton about a guy from numbers that are the result of him being promoted to the major league level too soon, ironically it was done by the Detroit GM to give Theo the middle finger because Theo asked for more for Garza than he wanted to give. The whole ‘I’ll show you how much I need Garza, Turner IS my Garza!’ insanity, and poor Turner had to pay the price for his GM’s stupidity. This guy’s a Superstar waiting to happen, but he needs more learning time. He’s going to get it out of the bullpen the rest of this season, and then in the off-season he will get to work extensively with Bosio and company, and hopefully come next year he will finally be good to go!

        • cubtex

          Most clubs rush their top pitching prospect to help them in a pennant race. Kevin Gausman,Gerrit Cole,Stephen Strassburg,Aaron Sanchez this year with the Jays. All hands on deck when trying to win a WS. This was not unusual or as a slap to Theo :)

        • DWalker

          I don’t really get excited about waiver reject pickups, but I gotta say, Turner sounds a “click” in my mind of a piece falling into place. easily could be wrong, but this feels like it will be considered an impact move down the road. He has interesting stats and was rushed into service before he was really ready. Even if it was the right move for a contendor it wasn’t the right move long term for Turner. And we have the god of reclamation projects Bosio ready to get his hands on Turner now. Right now if any organization can make Turner into something, its the cubs.

    • Larry Schwimmers

      I was confused by your comment about his lack of success in the minor leagues? That’s totally incorrect.

      When he was in the Texas Ranger minor league system in 2012 in 107 games he had 28 HRs, 82 RBIs and was batting .288. If he had not gotten hit in the eye, he’d still be with the Rangers. He was there No. #1 prospect. The one thing is clear: (1) OLT is a very talented 3rd baseman; (2) He’s got awesome power to hit 30+ HRs potential for the CUBS. his talent and current performance in Triple AAA — I say bring him up in September and give him another chance.

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  • calicub

    If I recall, wasn’t Fontenot traded during a series in SF? He just walked his bags across the clubhouse and found himself a new locker.

    • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

      You are correct …

    • paulcatanese

      Yes, saw it on television at the time, pretty funny, as he was greeted by ex-Cubs at the Giants clubhouse.

  • calicub

    Seems to me the Cubs could benefit from a 6 man rotation in September. Strailey
    Doubront
    Turner
    Wada
    Hendricks
    Arrieta
    Wood
    EJax

    That’s a lot of guys to get innings out of. If they could move Jackson and piggy back two of those guys, we could get a good look at what we have next year.

    • BigJonLilJon

      Would like to see Jackson moved to long relief. Tough schedule coming with only 1 day off, all the extra innings games lately. Need him in bullpen to take on innings regardless of outcomes. Other team know what he is and we are not gonna be able to trade him as a starter with that contract any way

  • paulcatanese

    Handling of the bullpen by Renteria is suspect for me. What I find is strange is that bullpens have been around for a long time

    • cubsin

      The Cubs use so many relievers because their starters generally only last about five innings. The recent spate of extra-innings games hasn’t helped.

      • paulcatanese

        Even before the recent turn of events a lot more pitchers were used than necessary , sometimes a pitcher a hitter. Renteria admitted the overuse himself. Between the bullpen and the many times he (Renteria) has tried to use instant replay has slowed the game to a standstill for me.
        Not saying he is good or bad, just saying I don’t like his style.
        Then again, he is perfect for the program that Theo and Co. is putting out there. I do believe that his pre-game strategy has been dictated from the front office, and that’s not a bad thing as the program has to be top to bottom. But Leo Durocher he is not.

        • cubtex

          at least he bunted in yesterday’s game with a man on 1st and no outs in extra innings with the 2 and 3 hitters coming up. Sveum probably would have had Coghlan swing away and possibly hit into a double play or hit a fly ball and not advance the runner. The sac bunt got Sweeney to 2nd and then the defense(or lack of) helped do the rest. Passed ball on strike 3 to let Sweeney get to 3rd and Baez to 1st.

          • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

            I think you’re right. The only guy to consistently go over 6 innings is Hendricks lately. Arietta was before his last start, hope he gets back on tonight.

            Hendricks has been a huge help there. He hasn’t gone less than 7 yet and went 8 last outing…

      • cubtex

        very true. they don’t have a workhorse now that Shark has been dealt.

        • John_CC

          Arrieta has been as horsey as Jeff was all season.

          • cubtex

            has he been going deep in games? Has he ever gone 8 innings or does he have a complete game? Just asking.

          • cubtex

            just checked. he has had a good stretch from 6/13 thru the end of July. I don’t think Arrieta is built for a heavy workload like Shark is. The Cubs need one of those guys. EJax can give them 200 innings physically but not performance wise. They need a workhorse to save the bullpen from overuse.Hopefully they can get one next year.

          • Tony_H

            Arrieta has done well going deep into games.

            Jeff S. 17 games 108 innings 6.35 inn/gm
            Jake A. 17 games 103 innings 6.06 inn/gm

            slight edge to Samardzija by 5 innings over 17 starts.

            But, Arrieta was coming back from injury and his first 3 starts were limited to 80 pitches and then a couple of 90 pitch starts. Just taking away the 3 – 80 pitch starts and his numbers are right with Samardzija.

            14 games 89.2 Innings 6.41 inn/gm

            I agree over the long haul, I think Samardzija is going to be more of the work horse, but Arrieta has better than you give him credit for so far.

          • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

            Hendricks seems to be a workhorse. Small sample yes, but he’s going very deep, with pitch count staying extremely moderate.

          • MarkleMcD

            The Shark averaged 6 and 1/3 inning for the Cubs this year. Hardly a workhorse.

            Last year was 6.5 innings per. Again, hardly a workhorse.

  • cubtex

    Was on a long road trip this weekend helping move my son to college early for cross country season. Listened to alot of mlb radio. Bowden mentioned how he would put Turner in the bullpen and have him work on just 2 pitches. Bowden thinks Turner throws too many sliders. He compared Turner to what he did with Joel Hanrahan who was bad as a starter and got to be a very good relief guy. Makes sense to me.

    • John_CC

      Bowden read that from the blog I posted last week, the day of the trade.

  • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

    Lots of good going on in Minors. I don’t think Olt is done yet. In his last AAA stint he wasn’t very good. Then he came up, barely played, hit 11 HR and struck out like everytime he opened his eyes and wasn’t hitting an HR.

    But to me, his success at AAA is really, really promising. He’s never been great there before and right now he is absolutely dominant. I believe when he returns to Chicago, if he plays everyday, he’ll finish strong.

    • cubtex

      can you imagine the different mindset he would have had…IF…he started the year in AAA and had success there first and was then brought up to the majors instead of the way it was done?

      • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

        Totally. Don’t know if you’ve read ST, but I’ve already said I was colossally wrong on Kalish, and I’ll add Olt to that mix.

        I think Olt is still going to be very good. He’s never had much success at AAA before, and now he goes down, plays everyday and is just totally raking. He’s at a pace that is above that of Bryant even. I feel pretty confident that Olt is going to have a good MLB career. But yes, his handling this year was a mistake.

        • SirGladiator

          Yeah, bringing him up just to sit him was absolutely insane. He was brought up a bit prematurely as well, but it’s absolutely necessary to get that consistent PT, and he never did. He’s still got a shot at making the team next year as a corner outfielder, obviously Bryant has 3B nailed down whenever they bring him up, but if Olt keeps hitting he could easily edge out most of our other OFers.

          • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

            Agree. Not sure Bryant will stick at 3rd though. We will see. If Olt can hit, from what I hear, he is worlds ahead of Bryant in terms of defense.

      • Larry Schwimmer

        Cubtex…you make a great point. OLT was not impressive during Spring Training. Yes…he showed power by hitting some HRs…but since he had never had success in Triple AAA, it was a crucial mistake to bring him up so soon to the Majors. Especially since he’d never had a chance to develop any confidence in AAA.

        Then, the CUBS compounded their mistake with OLT by playing him only against Lefties. It would have been soooooo much better to send him to Triple AAA in May instead of waiting so long. I think it is bad coaching and management of a rookie to bring him up to play in 1 of every 3 games. Either you have the confidence to play him against righties and lefties or you should send him back down to the minors to complete his development. Shame on the CUBS F.O.

        • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

          “Shame on the Cubs FO?” Who are you? How do you get to shame a MLB front office?

          It was a mistake. Everyone makes them. They have ht home runs more than they’ve struck out. And now Olt is at AAA raking. Doesn’t look any worse for the wear. In fact it appears it was a positive experience, no? Maybe this was the plan! Hahahaha!

          • Larry Schwimmer

            Boadrider: You may not agree with my opinion. But…You don’t need to personally attack me or question my character (with comments like: “Who are you?”) because you don’t like the opinion I expressed.

            Here’s who I am: I’m a CUB fan. I live in a free country where I can express my opinion including this website. And, I’m a fan of THEO’s. But no one is perfect. I thought the handling of OLT was a “shameful” mistake on his part.

            I got the idea from Neil comments — that being respectful to each other on this website was the way this website was run? I hope that applies to you, too Boatrider?

          • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

            You’re right Larry. I typed another reply below apologizing before you even got a chance to reply to my first reply. I wish I hadn’t said that….

          • Larry Schwimmer

            Thanks for apology. Accepted and no hard feelings. From your postings you seem like a good guy and a very passionate CUB fan (like me).

            I really like Mike Olt as a player (especially after what he went through after being hit in the eye). Since the beginning of this season, I’ve felt bad for him, watching him strikeout with such regularity. And I thought that playing him every 3rd or 4th day against lefties was not the way to correct his problem. That was bad judgment. Especially when it became clear that his strikeout rate wasn’t improving by only facing lefty pitching.

            Finally, Olt’s pathetic strikeout rate forced the F.O. to do what they should have done early on — which was to send him to Triple AAA to work out his problems. It might have been strong for me to say, but I did think it was “shameful” to watch Olt struggle for so long and not take the action (which they eventually did).

            Anyway, we can have friendly disagreements, but rest assured that I love Theo and I’ve been a CUB fan for 50+ years. I refuse to die until they win the World Series! :) I enjoy reading your posts.

          • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

            For sure. And I agree with you for the most part. I probably won’t go as far as to say shame on them. But the decision is puzzling. And the thing is, they didn’t need him, playing poorly. And he wasn’t playing often. I don’t get the decision. But in some way, they must have believed they were doing the right thing for him and the club. Maybe learning from Bill Mueller and chatting with Rizzo? Rizzo is certainly a student of hitting. You can tell by the way he reinvents himself that he is a student and tries to figure things out.

            I never liked the decision when he wasn’t playing. He was flailing at times, but he had that power. And he started to hit righties. It didn’t seem to me that righties was the problem. I think it was just a struggling team, too much bench time and not enough real baseball after last season. He needs to get back into a rhythm.

            I do think his future is still very bright. The way he’s done at AAA is encouraging, especially because he’s not been real good there before. So it’s not like he went back to where he was comfortable. And AAA guys can throw and know how to pitch. It’s not MLB, but AA is power arms, AAA is craftiness. So the fact he’s excelling there tells me he learned form his MLB experience. Maybe it will turn out to have helped him.

            I’ll be watching him closely in September. Hopefully Soler does come up too so that all eyes will be on him and Baez and Olt can fly under the radar. I think that will help. When up, he was so much the center of attention, good and bad, and wondering why he wasn’t playing. In September he should just be able to go and play baseball.

            If he cuts down the K’s it will be really good. But I just hope he can keep the average around .250 and hit a few HR. He’s got crazy power. Kind of reminds me of a young, right-handed Jim Thome. We shall see…

            Thanks for understanding and forgiving Larry. I don’t want to be nasty to anyone here. Whether they are positive or not. The negative crowd has a right to their opinion too. But I think it’s interesting. I’m overly positive and people call me out for my optimistic projections. But much of the crazy negative projections we kept hearing have all been wrong too. Nobody mentions that. Less than a few months ago people were still screaming on this site that we wouldn’t be worth a dang until 2019-2020. Now it’s obvious we’re not going to be waiting near that long. But they only focus on my faulty projections ;)

          • Larry Schwimmer

            Boadrider: No problem. We’ve communicated and I appreciated your understanding of my point. It’s so much more fun when everyone is kind instead of contentious. But I know what you mean about people on this sight who are pre-disposed to being “soooo negative.” I’m not one of those people. But I’m not poly annish either. We can disagree about the appropriate word about OLT’s handling (“shame vs. mistake”). That’s not the point. The point is: It was a bad move in the way that handled him. It’s been corrected. Hopefully, he’ll come back from Triple AAA and hit .250+

            To me I see all of us as “Opinionators.” We all have differing opinions. But…we might all do things differently if we sat in a meeting with Theo and Jed and heard information that we presently have no access to. So, we share opinions based on “some” information.

            I’m not as high on RIZZO as you are. Compared to last year, he’s clearly improved. But he runs the bases like a fool and gets thrown out more than he should. The other day he was so busy watching a “possible” HR that he forgot to go hard and almost got thrown out at 2nd. And, I think he foolishly hogs too much of the inside of the plate. The result is that pitchers learn that the best way to get him to miss or pop up is come in on his hands. His batting average has been horrible since the All-Star game. He pops out way to much.

            I feel bad for our pitchers because the offense behind them is awful. Other than Coughlan who’s batting about .290 — they are a team of .230 to .280 hitters who are inconsistent at best.

            I’m so excited to know that SOLER and BRYANT will be on the club soon. And I hope OLT, too.

        • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

          Sorry Larry, I shouldn’t have started my reply like I did. You can have your opinion and state it with passion and emphasis. Not my place to reply like that…

  • BillyFinT

    Always nice to hear Cavarretta and his brilliant teammates remembered!