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There really isn’t much more you can say about Travis Wood’s first eight starts this year. They’ve all been quality starts, and half of them have been flat out dominant. Yes, the Rockies’ bats have been struggling, but Wood took them apart.

It’s good to see Kyuji Fujikawa back, and looking like the guy the Cubs thought they were signing. Carlos Marmol finished things out by striking out the side in the 9th. I didn’t even mind the homer he gave up, because it came on a fastball right down the pipe … which is what you’re supposed to do when pitching with a 9-run lead. Well done, Carlos.

And the offense, well, it was a laugher. That’s three wins in a row …

may 13 box

Full box.

  • Seth

    Cubs are leading the league in doubles and now have a -5 run differential. And it looks like the bullpen might finally be coming around. Do I smell a .500 team?

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      With each win where the Cubs look decent, I grow more and more angry about the five or six early games they should have won. This damn team …

      • Seth

        Very true. If they win half of those 6 blown games they are at .500 right now. Really frustrating stuff…

      • another JP

        We’ll get the breaks to recover those games as the year goes on. Seems like the addition of Gregg as closer has stabilized the entire team and they’re playing more relaxed. But you’re right- particularly against the Brewers & Reds- we just gave away those games. And we caught the Braves at just the wrong time too.

      • hansman1982

        Damn BABIP Goddess…

      • Kyle

        This. Gambler’s fallacy isn’t happening, we aren’t getting this games back.

        I’m super excited about the fact that, with some positive variance from here on out, we might get back to .500. But I’m equally annoyed that we’re in a six-game hole because of negative variance early.

        • Timothy Scarbrough

          I know so many people who watch baseball that are utterly convinced of the law of averages.

  • another JP

    Travis Wood looks like he’s figured it out. Big game tomorrow- if we can follow up tonite’s performance with another win that Nats series just might have given this team the confidence it needs to go on an extended winning streak.

  • clay

    Rizzo promptly says Thanks for the money bbygoing going 1 for 5 and leaves six on base.

    • TWC

      Yeah! Cubs clobbered the Rockies, but let’s focus on the shitty parts, right?

      • Drew7

        It’s part of being a Cubs fan, Hippie. See, watch:

        Darwin Barney couldn’t hit his way out of a wet paper bag. :)

        • DocPeterWimsey

          But he could field his way out!

    • Anonnifan

      Very astute observation. I agree with you that the best way to figure out the value of a contract is by judging the player on the first game they have after signing. I mean, its not like this is football where a player can have a bad game every now and again, this is baseball! We only have 120 games left in the season to judge this kid by, and 1/120th of the first year of the season when he signs a contract is a huge deal. Huge. Can’t stress enough how much this matters.

    • another JP

      LMFAO. You win the prize for most feeble attempt at trolling ever. What an idiotic comment.

    • Rcleven

      Sure is nice not to have to depend on Rizzo to score runs. Last time I looked this is a team game. Castro, Fonzie,DD all picking this team up is big. Rizzo? Trade the bum.

    • Blublud

      The guy sign for all that money, then proceeds to put up a line of.200/.200/.200 with 0 HRs and 0 RBI over the current life of the deal. I mean, What a bum?

      • hansman1982

        I wonder if we could trade him for Campana…

        • Blublud

          Nah. No way Arizona makes that deal.

          • Rich H

            Of course not. Rizzo doesn’t have that Fire in his Belly that Gibson loves. He wouldn’t trade 3 Rizzo’s for the king of grit Campana.

    • TommyK

      Rizzo actually hit the ball really well in his first two at bats.

    • Carew

      His lone hit was a good AB as well

    • Chaz Mulherin

      You must have not watched his at bats then

    • JB88

      You obviously didn’t watch the game. He was mashing all night. He also nearly missed a HR late.

  • Drew7

    Great win. Good to see Wood continue his dominance with another great start.

    Don’t look now, but Soriano has his OPS up to .744 – just about league-average production now after an abysmal start.

  • Blublud

    Wood is quickly becoming my favorite Cub. I love shark, but wood has been just amazing. Anybody who says the Cubs lost the Marshall trade has no clue. Theo and co. Looking geniuses on that one.

    I’m actually falling in love with team. And the 2 players I didn’t like in Schierholtz and Valbuena are starting to pull me in. If Barney get back to mediocre offensively and Sori gets hot, without to much drop off from the rotation, this is a .500 team.

    • Seth

      Hell if the bullpen stabilizes like it looks to be doing and the Cubs get up to league average with RISP this team is definitely a .500 team.

    • Anonnifan

      I don’t even think that Marshall is saying that the Cubs lost in the Marshall trade the way that things are looking so far this year. Honestly I could never figure out why the Reds would trade a starter who came so close to a perfect game and who’s last name is not Humber. If that didn’t clue you into his potential what would?

  • willis

    Damn, is Wood, a good pitcher? He has been damn dominant this year. Friday night was a debacle, other than that this last week has been really fun to watch. Great to see.

  • JoeyCollins

    Only two words to describe this game… Pretty much

  • Jason

    Wood has been great his entire time with the Cubs. The guy has got it going on right now. Very pleased with his performance this year though, he’s been fantastic.

  • willis

    Even Barney got a hit. What a night :)

  • Kyle

    Our run differential is -5. That’s amazing.

    • DocPeterWimsey

      The net OPS is at +0.037. That is even more remarkable given what this team was like last year (-0.079). I don’t know that this is really a +0.037 OPS team: they typically win 54 – 55% of their games. If any of them have played worse than 0.475 ball, then it hasn’t been in the last 50 years. Still, this really is a big improvement over last year, even if it’s not turning up in the W-L column as strongly as it should.

  • DocPeterWimsey

    Not to brag, but the Cubs are 3-0 since I turned up in person to cheer them on…..

    • hansman1982

      So now the question is…do you never show up again, only show up once a year, show up for every game?

      • ssckelley

        pfffft, the Cubs only won because I was not able to watch them on TV.

        • hardtop

          the cubs only won because I WAS able to watch them on TV (local denver broadcast)

          …but it i didnt. keith and pat in the garage… its like a warm blanket

          doc, you better be at opening day next year dammit!

  • Tim

    Last start wood was the best started in baseball. Now, cy young and MVP?

    • Tim

      Starter*

      • Rcleven

        Na. Sveum said after the Nationals wins that the Cubs beat the two best pitchers in baseball.

        • willis

          Ha, good catch. I am not a Sveum fan in the least, but his absolute comments are gold…and the fact he hates Ian Stewart makes me smile.

    • JoeyCollins

      Dale Sveum on Wood handling success “You can guarantee one thing besides the sun coming up, Travis Wood is going to be the same guy.”

  • Joepoe321

    Cubs pitchers lead the league in RBI’s batted in!

  • jt

    Cubs are now 3W 1L in blowouts with a run differential of +15 in those 4 games.
    So… the run differential in the other 24 games is -20 (does not include the blowout they lost).
    *
    Basically, Cubs SP’ing has avoided the blowout while Cub hitting hasn’t hit against adequate or better pitching along with the BP problems.
    *
    Seems to be areas in which improvement is possible.

    • Kyle

      Interestingly, good records in blowouts is a better indicator of future performance than good records in close games.

  • Dynastyin2017

    The White Sox could have a higher draft pick than the Cubs next year. I do not know how I feel about that.

    • Frank F

      If it makes you feel any better, if the Sox draft anyone of value they’ll trade him for a 32 year old rental in a few years. Now what IS rather scary is that each of the Dodgers, Angels, and Blue Jays could have top 5-10 picks. I don’t expect any of them, but that would be wild.

  • mysterious4th

    Travis Wood has made the Reds look crazy for trading him for Sean Marshall. If Wood is 75% as good as this thru his time with the Cubs Theo and Jed showed why our front office is probably one of the best (if not the best) in the business currently. They have two pretty good trades under their belt (Cashner for Rizzo and Wood for Marshall)

    Speaking of Rizzo when they wrote about the Rizzo extension last night they stated Rizzo spent time between the Cubs and AAA Tucson last year. Didn’t he split time between Iowa and the Cubs….not Tucson if memory serves me right.

    Let’s hope they win tomorrow…it’ll be my birthday gift from them. The man I donated my kidney to a few months back got me a *drum roll* Rizzo jersey for me for my birthday. It came today. I just had to share :-D

    • mudge

      beautiful.

    • mick6x

      Can I help with a mysterious 5th?

  • http://bleachernation lou brock

    Travis Wood just goes to show you do not need to be a 6’5″ 240 lb. behemoth to pitch successfully in the ML. Think about that come draft time when maybe we need to pick up a solid everyday 3B like Colin Moran, a left handed OBP machine from North Carolina & become the next Wade Boggs in a Cub uniform.

    • Frank F

      I don’t know about that. Now if we really were to trade for a Ray’s pitcher, then I’d love to grab Bryant. However, only Shark, Wood, and Jackson are under team control past 2013, and we have no SP’s in the minors that lead me to believe that they can step in as anything more than swing men. Maybe Vizcaino, but ill have to wait and see when/if he ever takes the mound. We have several intriguing arms at the lower levels, most notably Maples, Wells, and Johnson, but none of them are remotely sure things.

  • hardtop

    castros line makes me feel good inside. rizzo’s? not so much. wish castro’s line looked that more often. when he’s patient, he’s amazing.

    i live in denver, and this win makes me so remarkably happy. denver fans suck, and there is no other word for it… suck. baseball, football, hockey, basketball. suck X 4. i rec’d so many shit-talk text messages from people who had watched a dozen rockies games and had no idea what the F^$K they were talking about. not that the cubs are good or anything, but the rockies certainly arent as good as their record… and only a suckey sports fan wouldn’t know that.
    (suckey really should be a word by now)

    anyway, enough about shitty sports fans. lets talk about the cubs faithful. n
    ice win tonight for the boys in the pinstripes against the girls in the purple blouses.

    btw. i was one who didn’t initially praise the t-wood for marshall trade. in fact, i think i was strongly against it. but kyle, and others, appear to have been right about that move. our bullpen still sucks, but its a small price to pay for YOUNG, QUALITY, Starting pitching. thats a a big permanent marker check mark in the in the win column for theo. (you know, those super strong smelling get you buzzed old school permanent markers?.. yeah, that kind)

  • Die hard

    Only criticism is this is one game where given batting avg Wood should’ve batted 8 and Barney 9— just give it a shot and see what happens against a good team not struggling which could make a game winning difference

  • Frank F

    As of now, the Cubs are 16-22. 8.5 games out of 1st. 5 out of a Wild Card. Make the blown opportunities of April and May really sting. Convert just 4 of those 9 blown saves into W’s and were 20-18, a virtual 3rd place tie and 3.5 games out. This is exactly what I’d expected entering the season. A .500ish fringe contender that could make some summer pick ups and contend for at least a wild card.

    But it’s Mid May and there’s actually hope. Shit, we have a better record than the Dodgers, Angels, and Blue Jays, each of whom were supposed to run rampant through their divisions.

    This could change by the weekend, but for the first time in over a year, I don’t want to immediately sell off all assets. This time last week, I was shopping pretty much everyone but Castro, Rizzo, Shark, and Wood in my head. Now, the only one I’d really want to shop is either Feldman or Villanueva when Garza returns, just to see what they’d bring back.

    Shit. 4 years worth of numbness is wearing off.

    • Tim

      Or even better, instead of trading Villanueva, send him to our bullpen (which I believe is the plan) and we’ll have a solid pitching staff all around

  • dob2812

    There’s some serious regression coming for Wood. What he’s doing is not sustainable. Hopefully he can make it another couple of months without going back to the homer-happy, plus 4 ERA guy he is.

  • Chad

    Fun game to be at even though it was a bit chilly for May 13th.

  • Willrust

    Anybody notice that 7 of the 8 Cubs positional players that started the game last night are hitting over .270?

    Perhaps playing the matchups just took a little time for everyone to get used to?

  • Bazfan1234

    Had to watch the game on the Rockies sports network, which was actually pretty pleasant, they were amazed at the amount of doubles the Cubs were hitting. Also, one of the announcers stated Travis Wood has learned to get on top of the ball and really “pitch”, not just throw. He said in the past, Wood was just throw and have a tendancy to not get on top of the ball, said that was the major difference this year with him.

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