Yesterday was a crazy day of baseball. O’s/Sawx go 17 with a position player as the winning pitcher, Pujols finally goes deep, Hamels plunks Harper, Werth breaks his wrist, the Cubs walk off against what was the best team in the NL…
- That last one was obviously the highlight. That’s three wins already on the year in games in which the Cubs trailed going into the 9th inning. There’s no way the Cubs had three of those all of last year, and I’d hazard a guess that it’s as many as they’ve had in 2010 and 2011 combined. Anyone care to do some digging and drop the deets in the comments?
- Yesterday’s starter, Travis Wood, had a nice outing, but even a shutout might not have kept him in the bigs. As I said yesterday, the Cubs are expected to send Wood back down soon so that they can call up an infielder to replace Blake DeWitt. Adrian Cardenas and Luis Valbuena are your most obvious candidates. Wood’s chance to really grab a spot in the rotation will come, but it won’t be until a pitcher or two are traded or put on the DL for a long stretch. Wood was pleased with his start: “I felt good and pitches started working later in the outing. I got some quick outs on ground balls and kept us close. I didn’t feel I was nervous or anything but odds are I probably was without knowing it. I was able to get those quick outs and we came back and won.”
- On the move that brought Wood up to the big club (the DeWitt DFA), Dale Sveum is hopeful that the Cubs won’t lose a player, but offered a flaccid explanation for the move. “Hopefully he clears waivers and stays with us,” Sveum said, according to the Tribune. “It’s unfortunate, because of the flu bug it costs somebody his job. But hopefully he stays in the organization.” Come on, dude. The flu did not cost DeWitt his job. DeWitt’s play and the Cubs’ belief that he was replaceable cost him his job. Were it not the case, the Cubs would have DL’d Matt Garza. As it was, the Cubs believed three days of Matt Garza (i.e., Garza starting on Friday rather than next Monday) were more valuable than Blake DeWitt. It’s harsh, but it’s clear. I also happen to believe the front office had seen enough, and was ready to get Valbuena or Cardenas up with the big club. DeWitt could be placed on waivers (but not outrighted off the 40-man roster), and if he clears, the Cubs could send him to AAA if they wanted. We’ll see how it plays out.
- Ian Stewart’s hit in the 9th yesterday after a long, battling at bat was awesome for so many reasons. It led to the tying run, he fouled off a ton of pitches, it brought his average back over .200, and … he was sick as a dog while he was doing it. The virus that’s been traveling among the Cubs’ clubhouse bit him earlier in the weekend, but Dale Sveum needed a bat. “Stewart was about as sick as you could get and came up with a huge hit,” Sveum said. “I asked him if he could go into the game and he was like, ‘I’m a little dizzy and can’t really see straight right now.'” Can we get a little love for Ian Stewart?
- Tony Campana was recently talking about the Wrigley Field seagulls, and how close they get, and how they don’t have fear, and blah blah blah. But in the midst of that, he said this: “There was a fan who threw a piece of pizza at me,” Campana said. “I had to kick it away from me so the birds didn’t eat me. They were all around me today.” I’m sorry, a fan threw a piece of pizza at Tony Campana? Did he think Campana was hungry? Was he trying to spread the dough and the toss got away from him? I’m trying to envision the circumstances where a bleacher fan – of the Cubs or the Dodgers – throws a piece of pizza at a player on the field. If I saw someone do that, I’d be inclined to make sure they followed their piece of pizza right onto the field. Not cool.
- I was on Wrigley Talk Friday last Friday with Julie DiCaro from A League of Her Own, but it was live, and I’d imagine many of you weren’t able to listen. If you want to hear the replay, I’ve now got the link (there it is). There was a bit of a glitch at the beginning, so we don’t start talking until about the 1:20 mark, but you can skip ahead. Gratuitous banana hammock mention at the end.
- MLBullets at BCB, where I talk about the O’s and Red Sox’s marathon game, Bryce Harper getting plunked (on purpose) by Cole Hamels, and Albert Pujols finally hitting a homer.
- Be ready: we’ve got another one-day, big money fantasy baseball contest happening on Friday. Details to come later today. If you missed the last one, it was a lot of fun, and, although I didn’t win, I feel like I backed up my smack talk by beating 2/3 of you who entered. I’ll take that. And I’ll do better this time. Chumps.