With their win yesterday, and the Rockies’ loss, the Cubs have now climbed into the third-to-worst spot in baseball for the first time in several weeks. The Rockies have lost seven in a row.

  • Dale Sveum says we can expect to see non-regulars against the non-contenders coming up next week (for example, in the suddenly very important three-game series against the Rockies) for evaluation purposes. Excellent. That doesn’t include Darwin Barney, however, who is still shooting for the MLB record single-season errorless streak at second base. He needs five more games to tie Placido Polanco’s record 141 game streak.
  • Speaking of that streak, Anthony Rizzo saved Barney a throwing error yesterday in the 10th when Barney uncorked a wild one and Rizzo dived to his right to spear it, while sliding his foot back to the bag. Unstated, though, is that even getting to the ball and getting a quick throw over to first was a nice play for Barney, who was ranging far to his left at the time. Barney says he’s going to get Rizzo a token of appreciation.
  • Dale Sveum says he doesn’t expect to see a quality on-base percentage from a young guy until he’s had 2000 at bats in the big leagues or 4000 at bats in professional baseball.
  • If I’m counting correctly, the Cubs have walked off on the Cardinals four(!) times this year – the back-to-back nights in April, the RizzOMG back in July, and the one yesterday. That’s nice.
  • Comparing the Cubs over the past 30 years to the Cardinals is not a pleasant exercise. Voodoo freaking magic, man.
  • The Cubs have licensed their stuff to an eatery at O’Hare International Airport, so there will be a Cubs restaurant there starting Tuesday. There are jokes available, but most are hacky.
  • Melky Cabrera asked to be unqualified for the batting title, so MLB, together with the players union, crafted a new rule where, if you’re short of enough at bats to win the batting title because of a PED suspension, you don’t get the benefit of the other rule that would have allowed you to still win if you were given enough at bats to qualify (all as hitless at bats), and your average still stays on top (which would have been the case with Cabrera, who needed just one more hitless at bat to qualify, which would have dropped his average, like, nothing). Probably a good idea.
  • hcs

    Scoreless streak or errorless?

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Man. I make that slip more than any other in the history of the site. I don’t know what it is.

  • ferrets_bueller

    Hopefully, its an Error-less steak!

    …I’ll show myself out.

  • Jackalope

    “Dale Sveum says he doesn’t expect to see a quality on-base percentage from a young guy until he’s had 2000 at bats in the big leagues or 4000 at bats in professional baseball.”

    Saw that comment–very interesting. I wonder if he’s getting that from somewhere, or if it’s just on off-the-cuff hypothesis. I’m sure some sabermetric work has been done on this. Would be interesting to see if the numbers generally bear this out.

    • DocPeterWimsey

      If Sveum is equating drawing walks with OBP, then he’s repeating a common belief that has been well-refuted by the data. (BIll James did it just a few years ago.) Most guys draw walks at pretty much the same rate throughout their career: in a lot of cases, you can extend those rates to the miLB days. When rates do shift, then they tend to shift down in later years: as guys reflexes start to slow a little, they have to start swinging earlier and thus begin to expand their strike zone.

      • cubchymyst

        I’m sure your correct that the data doesn’t show any correlation. But I can see why it would be a common belief. To reach 2000 MLB means playing regularly for about 3-4 years. Which means the player has to be able to make adjustments to MLB pitching. Maybe its just about the ability to make adjustments on the fly.

        • DocPeterWimsey

          Really, it’s an “old school” vs. “new school” dichotomy. One of the reasons why the Cubs farm system is full of guys who do not draw walks (and who thus seriously limit their OBP) is that Hendry’s people really bought into the idea that the players would develop batting eyes. And if you look at why the Cubs dream prospects of 10 years ago flopped, lack of batting eye was one of the biggest reasons. (Really, only Hee Seop Choi was an exception: and if he had not lost all of his bat speed after wrist issues, then he probably would have turned out well; even when his BA was around 0.200, his OBP was in the mid 0.300’s!)

          • cubchymyst

            I was not commenting on batting eye, I was just commenting on a player bieng able to reach 2000 at bats in the MLB means that probably are a good hitter (or have a strong ability to get on base). Looking up Koyie Hill stats, he only had 966 PA in 9 years because his bad bat keeped him from playing regularly. Castro who has a better bat is already has 1743 plate appearances. So those who reach that 2000 plate appearances are the one who have the ability to get on base already.

            • DocPeterWimsey

              Oh, duh: I misunderstood. (Sorry, coffee hadn’t kicked into effect yet.)

              Yeah, you are correct: by the time you get to 2000 PAs, a guy probably has shown that he’s fairly competent with the bat. The only exceptions might be those guys who have that blazing start due to luck and then get a gazillion “second chances” to recapture the glory.

              (Gaby Sanchez, now on the Pirates, will probably be a classic case of this.)

  • MoneyBoy

    Brett … I’ve had the chance to meet Bruce Miles a few times. He brought me the game notes which I found to me MOST helpful and, to my surprise, Len refers to them often.

    BN’ers … they’re available daily on cubs.com if you don’t already know!

    Anyway, the reason for this comment is that same game notes mentions … “Cubs batters have drawn 213 walks in 65 games (3.3 walks per game) after the all-star break. They had 196 walks in 85 games (2.3 walks per game) before the break. The Cubs’ 213 walks since the break are second most in the NL and fourth most in the majors. Atlanta leads the big leagues with 252 walks in that span.”

    For all “we” complain about the lack of patience, walks and “quality” AB’s I was damn well pleasantly surprised. I’m sure we’ve all noticed the increase in BBs recently … is Dale’s harping finally taking hold, is Rowson’s communication better than Rudy’s … or is it just the maturation process of a (fairly) young team?

    In a dreadful (overall) season there are a lot of small, encouraging bright spots!

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      All of the above?

      • MoneyBoy

        Wouldn’t it be lovely to think so!

  • Spencer

    Go Blue

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Yay! We can agree today!

    • King Jeff


  • Timmy

    Barney rules.

  • Njriv

    Barney = terrible.

    • JoeCub

      What sport are you watching?!? This guy has won everywhere he’s been until making the big club. Tremendous defense, clutch hitting and great clubhouse guy. Barney=winning future for the Cubs.

    • Ben (BG2383)

      I certainly don’t see how someone could think he is terrible. I can understand someone grading him a utility guy or second-division starter, but that is not terrible. I think he is a fairly solid player. I just wish he walked more.

    • Njriv

      I’m just kidding guys, sheesh.

      • calicubsfan007

        @Njriv: Careful, saying anything bad about Barney is considered to be quite blasphemous. (=. I am a Barney fan though. He kicks butt!

  • Ben (BG2383)

    Have the draft spending pools already been allotted for next season. I wonder how much the #3 picking team gets to spend, and I also wonder how much less it is than #2. It is a shame that the Cubs are currently out of the 2 spot, but there is probably still a chance to get back there. Unfortunately there is still a series with the Astros remaining.

    • cubsin

      Last year, the difference was $1 million, and I’d expect it to be about that this year. The differences after round 1 aren’t significant. The difference in the international free agent pool should be between $50K and $100K.

      • nkniacc13

        be interesting to see bout the IFA pool as next year’s pool will be off standings this year

  • Jeff1969

    The Barney haters are just not smart people. Saying he’s terrible as he closes in on the major league record for errorless games shows you that njrirv, who said it, is either a troll or a dope. Maybe both.

    • Eric

      You do know that the people who are skeptical of barney as a starter worry about his bat and not his glove right? Everyone knows he is a good fielder, which is proof with his error less streak. It’s just can his bat equate into a championship caliber lineup, if and when that time comes. So i’d probably think before you speak

      • TSB

        Barney’s WAR is second only to Robinson Cano among second basemen.

        • MikeW

          Almost entirely due to the flaws in the WAR fielding system accounting for fielding shifts. I like barney a lot, and think he should remain a starter for the Cubs, but the WAR stat this year is crazy skewed.

          • DocPeterWimsey

            I think it has less to do with failing to account for shifts and more to do with an unrealistic equation for approximating how many runs (and thus how many wins) creating an extra X outs saves.

      • DarthHater

        Lose the picture, douchebag. This is a family friendly site.

        • The_Mick

          Ace himself said this wasn’t meant to be a family friendly site, however his avatar is extremely tasteless I will give you that one!

          • DarthHater

            I have heard him many times ask folks to tone down bad language because of the variety of people, including kids, who come here. So I’m not going to quibble over the precise definition of “family friendly.”

            • CubFan Paul

              Hall monitor. We have a goat for that.

              • DarthHater

                Hey, the picture was over the line. As for words, I never said I agreed. So go stick it sideways, douchenozzle.

                • Spencer

                  You realize it’s possible to post without using some form of the word “douche”, right?

            • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

              Whatever the definition, that picture was way, way past it.

      • Jeff1969

        Thanks Eric. You’re a mastermind. I think I’ll give that thinking before I speak a try. Douche.

    • Njriv

      Come at me bro! I was only kidding.

  • The Dude Abides

    Eric is that your mom’s picture you are using for your avatar?

    • Carew


      but thats disturbing…

    • MikeW


  • mudge

    this is the best thread ever

    • Fishin Phil

      Well, maybe not as good as the Russian spammers, but close!