Anthony Rizzo is the Cubs nominee for the 16th annual Hank Aaron Award for the top offensive performer in the National League. Online voting is open through Sunday, Oct. 5 (10:59pm CDT) and the Cubs’ All-Star first baseman is up against the best offensive players in the Senior Circuit.
Hank Aaron presents the award to each league’s winner during the World Series. And the winners will be decided by online voting and a special panel of Hall of Famers … Hank Aaron, Roberto Alomar, Johnny Bench, Paul Molitor, Eddie Murray, Frank Thomas and Robin Yount.
Anthony Rizzo hit .286/.386/.527 with 28 doubles, a triple and 32 home runs in 140 games. Rizzo drove in 78 runs and finished the season with a .913 OPS. Over his last 11 games with Jorge Soler in the lineup, Rizzo was 15-for-38 with five doubles, two home runs, eight walks and 10 strikeouts for a .395/.521/.684 slash line and a 1.205 OPS.
In 47 games after the break, Rizzo batted .307/.397/.581 with 13 doubles, 12 home runs and a .978 OPS.
According to a report from Comcast SportsNet, Kyle Hendricks exit interview went well and he “will be viewed as a key piece to the rotation when pitchers and catchers report to Arizona.”
Hendricks told Patrick Mooney the Cubs “didn’t really say much” except that he “did a great job this year,” more than what the Cubs expected, “work hard in the off-season and come to Spring Training ready to go.”
Kyle Hendricks was 7-2 in 13 starts with a 2.46 ERA, 1.08 WHIP and a 3.32 FIP at the big league level.
Number 9, Number 9 … Cubs Pick Number 9
Baseball America released the initial 2015 draft order Monday and the Cubs will pick ninth in next June’s draft as it currently stands.
An error was reported Monday that the Astros had not officially been awarded the second pick in the draft for failing to sign Brady Aiken. Based on the report from Baseball America, the Astros will pick second which pushes the Cubs to the ninth spot in the draft.
The Cubs first round pick is protected.
As Baseball America cautioned, the order could change slightly based on what moves teams make in the off-season.
- Baseball America – Initial 2015 Draft Order
The front office has roster decisions to make. With 39 players on the 40-man roster and three players on the 60-day DL (Ryan Sweeney, Justin Ruggiano and James McDonald), the Cubs have to clear at least two spots on the reserve roster.
The Cubs made three procedural roster moves Monday. OF/INF Josh Vitters and RHP Dallas Beeler were recalled from Triple-A Iowa and 3B Christian Villanueva was recalled from Double-A Tennessee.
News and Notes
Rick Renteria was happy with the improvements Starlin Castro made this year. And Castro hit well behind Anthony Rizzo this season according to his skipper. Rick Renteria told ESPN Chicago that he could see Castro hitting anywhere from second to sixth in the Cubs lineup.
Pat Hughes was inducted into the WGN Walk of Fame last week … and will someday be inducted into the Hall of Fame. Click here for video and audio of his induction.
A Cubs fan paid tribute to Vince Lloyd and Lou Boudreau.
Andy Masur put together an incredible audio tribute prior to the Cubs last game on 720 WGN … this is a must listen and share it with as many of the Faithful as possible.
The Cubs TV ratings were down this season. The White Sox ratings were up … and it was the exact opposite in attendance at the ballparks according to a report from Danny Ecker.
Major League Baseball released attendance figures for the 2014 season Monday afternoon. 73,739,622 paid to go to baseball games at the 30 ballparks this year, the seventh highest total in history. 12 teams surpassed 2.5 million in attendance and five teams (Yankees, Angels, Cardinals, Giants and Dodgers) passed the 3-million mark. The Cubs exceeded 2.6 million in attendance (2,652,113) this year, slightly more (+9,431) than in 2013.
According to Gary Sheffield, Javier Baez needs to fix a flaw in his swing.
The Cubs brimming potential brought a disturbing strikeout trend in 2014 according to ESPN Chicago.
Batting average in baseball was its lowest this season since 1972, before the designated hitter according to a report from FOX Sports. And according to Jayson Stark, there were 3,561 fewer runs scored in the big leagues this year than in 2007 and there were 5,252 more strikeouts.
For those that were unaware of the Cubs connection to Jordan Zimmermann’s no hitter. The Nationals selected Zimmermann in the second round of the 2007 draft with the compensation pick Washington received for the Cubs signing Alfonso Soriano.
This Day In Cubstory
2013 – Cubs fired manager Dale Sveum
2007 – Alfonso Soriano hit his 14th home run of the month off the Reds’ Homer Bailey and set the Cubs record for the most homers in September.
2002 – Cubs released Ron Mahay
1998 – Cubs dropped game one of the NLDS 7-1 to the Braves. Michael Tucker and Ryan Klesko homered behind John Smoltz.
1992 – Greg Maddux shutout the Pirates 6-0 and became the Cubs first 20-game winner in 15 years. Maddux tied Tom Glavine for the most wins in the National League.
1988 – President Ronald Reagan threw out the ceremonial first pitch at Wrigley Field. President Reagan, whose nickname was ‘Dutch’, was a play-by-play announcer for the Cubs and joined Harry Caray during the first inning and a half in the WGN booth.
1983 – Cubs released Jerry Morales
1983 – Cubs selected Mike Chris off waivers from the Giants
1962 – Cubs completed a triple play in the eighth inning of a 5-1 victory over the Mets at Wrigley Field … second baseman Ken Hubbs to first baseman Ernie Banks to shortstop Andre Rodgers.
1962 – Dave Magadan, born
1954 – Cubs received Sam Jones and a PTNBL from the Indians for a PTBNL. Cubs sent Ralph Kiner on Nov. 16, 1954 and the Cubs received $60,000 on Nov. 16, 1954 from the Indians and Gale Wade on Nov. 30, 1954 to complete the trade.
1943 – Cubs traded Ken Raffensberger and Rip Russell to the Phillies for players to be named later. The Phillies sent Andy Karl and Dick Conger to the Cubs on Sept. 30. Andy Karl refused to report to the Cubs on April 1, 1944.
1942 – The Philadelphia Athletics purchased Jesse Flores from the Cubs.
1933 – Babe Herman hit for the cycle and Guy Bush won his 20th game as the Cubs beat Dizzy Dean and the Cardinals 12-2 at Sportsman’s Park. Herman became the first player to hit for the cycle three times in Major League history.
1926 – Robin Roberts, born
1889 – Jimmy Ryan hit George Haddock’s first pitch for a home run, Ryan’s sixth leadoff homer of the season. Ryan set the Major League record for hitting six homers to start a game. Ryan’s record would stand until 1973 when Bobby Bonds hit seven leadoff homers in a single season.
1885 – The Chicago National League Ball Club clinched the pennant on a Fred Pfeffer homer in the seventh inning. John Clarkson edged Tim Keefe and the Giants 2-1 at West Side Park.
1884 – John Clarkson struck out seven batters in a row in the second, third and fourth innings in a 17-2 victory over the Giants. Clarkson ended up with 13 strikeouts.
1882 – Sixteen-year old Milton Scott, a back-up first baseman, became the youngest player in Cubs history when he went 2-for-5 with a run scored in a 6-5 victory over Buffalo at Lakefront Park.