The gods are doing their best to rob us of every possible reason we had to feel good about this season …
- Darwin Barney was three outs away from having sole possession of the record for most consecutive errorless games at second base in all of baseball. On a grounder up the middle, Barney ranged far to his right, instead of just trying to play for the streak. He picked the ball and tried to make the throw to first, which was low. Anthony Rizzo couldn’t snag it, and the streak was over. The worst part: it was an error only because there was a runner on base who scored, and who otherwise wouldn’t have scored. The grounder, itself, was scored a base hit.
- Dale Sveum sees Anthony Rizzo as a future clubhouse leader, if he isn’t one already.
- Speaking of which, Rizzo was sick about what he perceived to be his own failure on Barney’s error. Rizzo steadied himself enough to compliment his teammate: “First off, what he’s done is incredible. That play up the middle – incredible play, fearless, which he’s done all year. That’s the type of player Barney is. That’s why everyone was so upset. For me, it could turn into a positive. Everyone’s closer. I feel a lot of emotion right now.”
- Sveum was also sick about the Barney play. “That’s probably the sickest feeling that I think I’ve had in the game besides a couple playoff losses when you know you’re going home.” Sveum said, per Cubs.com. “It’s kind of the same feeling. It’s, wow, you can’t believe it. Some things you can’t understand in this world, and in life, period. That one is unbelievable to happen in the [eighth] inning and a play like that. It wasn’t even an error – it was an error because a guy advanced on a base hit that got away from the first baseman.”
- Barney on the error: “No [I didn’t think about holding the ball], I’ve got to make that play. It was 5-3 at the time. We’re in that ballgame. My job is to make plays, regardless of taking risk, and I think I’ve done that through this whole little run. That’s just how you play the game. You can’t hold that ball right there …. When your head feels like it’s floating around in the air and not connected to your body, that’s how we both felt. I felt more bad for ‘Riz’ because I knew how bad he felt. That’s not his fault at all. The ball popped up off the Arizona dirt and that’s just how it goes. He was doing his job to be aggressive, and I was doing my job to be aggressive.” Good guy that Barney.
- This will get its own post, but I wanted you to get a look early while it’s out there – the Cubs showed up aplenty on Baseball America’s top Northwest League prospects list (that’s where the loaded Boise Hawks play).
- The Cubs have a back-up plan.
- Ok, enough down-ness about the Barney error: you had a great run, Darwin, and you’ve had a great season. Congrats. Hold your head high. It’s a helluvanawesome streak.