The Cubs improved to an MLB best 15-5 on Tuesday night with the 4-3 win over the Brewers. The Cubs are 10 games over .500 after 20 games, a mark Joe Maddon’s team did not reach until Aug. 2 last season. And the 15-5 record is the best record after 20 games since the 1907 team began the year 16-4.
After the game, Joe Maddon said, “We’re learning to play a better, complete brand of baseball.”
Jake Arrieta addressed the PED allegations Tuesday, first with USA Today’s Bob Nightengale then the team’s beat writers.
“I’ve heard players, and I’m talking about some of the best players in the league question whether I’ve taken steroids or not. Some of the things I hear are pretty funny, and some people are idiots, frankly,” Arrieta said to Bob Nightengale. “I’ll see it on Twitter, ‘My close source revealed to me he’s on steroids.’ Well, the 10 tests I take a year say otherwise. I eat plants. I eat lean meat. I work out. And I do things the right way. If there are guys still on it, I hope they get caught. I care about the integrity of the game. I wouldn’t want to disappoint my family, my friends, my fans. That’s a huge motivating factor in doing it the right way. There are so many people that are counting on you, and leaning on all of us in this clubhouse to do some special things for the City of Chicago. To jeopardize that by taking banned substances, would be a ridiculous mistake.”
According to Nightengale, Arrieta “laughs at the cynicism and innuendo, without displaying the slightest hint of anger.”
“Hey, that’s one of the best compliments you can give a guy. I appreciate the fact that you think I’m pretty good, but taking steroids, that’s pushing it.”
Arrieta would welcome stronger testing and stiffer penalties for those that test positive. Arrieta thinks the policy should be changed and that players that cheat should not receive “multiple chances when they fail a steroids test.” Arrieta admitted the system would need to be ironed out but if it’s a blatant attempt to aid their performance then after one positive test that player should be banned from the game.
Maddon challenged anyone that thinks Arrieta is taking PEDs to follow him around and watch his workout programs for two days “and see what he actually does and see if you could do it.”
Jake Arrieta told the beat writers he’s always been in good shape he “just sucked” early in his career.
- USA Today – Jake Arrieta sounds off on Cubs future, PED rumblings: ‘Some people are idiots.”
- Bruce Levine – Jake Arrieta Has Heard PED Rumors, Call for Tougher Drug Testing
- Comcast SportsNet – Nothing to Hide: Cubs Ace Jake Arrieta Flattered by PED Suspicions
- Comcast SportsNet – One Strike and You’re Out? Jake Arrieta wants to see tougher penalties for MLB’s steroid users
- The Sun-Times – Jake Arrieta call PED speculation by rival players “flattering”
- The Tribune – Cubs ace Jake Arrieta laughs off talk PEDs fueled turnaround
Jake Arrieta Pre-Game No-Hitter Ceremony
The Cubs recognized Jake Arrieta’s second no-hitter on the field prior to Tuesday’s game with the Brewers. Arrieta’s family, along with David Ross and his family, Tom Ricketts and Chris Bosio were on the field as highlights from the no-hitter were shown on the video board.
The Reds are sending the pitching rubber, home plate and first base to Arrieta from his no-hitter. Arrieta said he is going to give home plate to David Ross. Arrieta received the pitching rubber from Dodger Stadium last August. He planned to set up a pitching mound at house with it. He joked last week now he will have to set up two.
According to ESPN Chicago, Arrieta is sending both his hat and cleats from the no-hitter to the Hall of Fame.
Miguel Montero was a late scratch Tuesday with a stiff back. David Ross replaced Montero in the starting lineup. Montero was available and is listed as day-to-day. The Cubs emergency catcher was Javier Baez.
Joe Maddon said Montero’s back started bothering him in Cincinnati. The Cubs thought he was fine, but according to Maddon the weather probably did not help.
According to Patrick Mooney, it was the weather that affected Montero’s back. Montero does not think he will miss any significant time or land on the disabled list.
Maddon was not sure before Tuesday’s game if Ross or Montero would catch Jake Arrieta on Wednesday night, if there is a game. ESPN Chicago reported that Montero said he “should be okay in a day or so.”
Tuesday’s Post-Game Reports
Here are the post-game reports and recap from the Cubs 4-3 win over the Brewers.
- CCO Recap – Cubs Grind Out a Win
- Comcast SportsNet – Addison Russell in the middle of red-hot start for Cubs
- ESPN Chicago – Clutch hitting comes through in Cubs’ second one-run victory of season
- ESPN Chicago – Cubs reach 10 game over .500 in 20 games … or 84 fewer than last year
- 670 The Score – Cubs Hold Off Brewers 4-3 for Best 20-Game Start since 1907
- The Sun-Times – Another big hit for Russell, another victory for Cubs
- Carrie Muskat – Kyle Hendricks understands Maddon’s move in a National League moment
- Carrie Muskat – Triple effect: Russell’s big hit propels Cubs
RHP Andury Acevedo was placed on the 7-day disabled list Tuesday with an undisclosed injury.
Acevedo has continued to struggle with Double-A Tennessee after a rough Spring Training. Acevedo is on the Cubs’ 40-man roster and was optioned to Triple-A Iowa midway through the exhibition season.
Acevedo has appeared in six games, all in relief. In five innings, Acevedo has allowed five runs, four earned, on three hits with nine walks and seven strikeouts (7.20 ERA, 2.40 WHIP).
Andury Acevedo is very athletic and has a big arm. The Cubs could have a late-inning reliever down the line if they can get him to throw strikes.
News and Notes
• John Harper reported the approach of Theo Epstein’s Cubs a lot like that of his mid-2000s Red Sox.
• Jesse Rogers explained how Dexter Fowler is making the Cubs go.
• The Hardball Times: Dexter Fowler, Casey Close, Collusion and the Value of Information
• FanGraphs examined how defensive metrics might have saved Jake Arrieta’s no-hitter.
• Addison Russell recorded the third go-ahead hit in the sixth inning or later of his career on Tuesday night, second one of the season. All three have been at Wrigley Field.
• According to Christopher Kamka, Anthony Rizzo’s 22 RBI are the most for a Cubs player through the first 20 games of a season since Billy Williams drove in 26 in 1970.
• Cubs starting pitchers through 20 games have a 2.34 ERA, last year after 20 games the rotation’s ERA was 3.89.
• Hector Rondon is 15-for-15 in save opportunities dating back to Aug. 14 of last season.
• Rick Sutcliffe has high praise for Jake Arrieta and his winning streak according to the Tribune.
• WGN Radio signed Kerry Wood and Ryan Dempster as baseball analysts.
• Rob Manfred said Major League Baseball expanding to 32 teams is inevitable, if not imminent.
• Buster Olney addressed the tanking issue again and questioned if blowouts are bad for baseball, especially in the NL.
• The average velocity on RHP Julio Teheran’s four-seam fastball is down for the third year out of the last four seasons. The Cubs are scheduled to face Teheran at Wrigley Field on Saturday.
• Statheads are the best free agent bargains in baseball according to Ben Lindberg and Rob Arthur.
And last, but not least, Ben Badler posted a must-read report on Baseball America about how teams can get around International bonus pools.
This Day in Cubstory
2014 – Cubs released Tommy Hottovy
2008 – Cubs released Les Walrond
1990 – Aaron Brooks, born
1981 – Joey Gathright, born
1981 – Cubs traded Barry Foote to the Yankees for Tom Filer and cash
1969 – Cubs traded James Armstrong and cash to the Reds for Don Nottebart
1959 – Cubs signed amateur free agent Tony Balsamo
1958 – Hank Sauer, playing for the Giants, grounded into a triple play (pitcher Dick Drott to second baseman Tony Taylor to first baseman Dale Long) in a Cubs 5-4 win over the Giants at Seals Stadium in San Francisco.
1955 – San Diego of the Pacific Coast League purchased Cal McLish from the Cubs
1922 – For the second time in as many days, Ray Grimes drove in the tying and winning runs as the Cubs beat the Cardinals at Wrigley Field.
1896 – Rogers Hornsby, born