dale sveum mediaAfter a wonderful stretch of time together, The Wife’s maternity leave is up, and she has headed back to teaching. Summer break is fast approaching, though, which means she’ll be back around here within a couple weeks. Why am I telling you this? Well, The Little Boy is at home with me for these couple weeks, which means I won’t always be able to be quite as swift or responsive as I’d like. Thankfully, I’m getting some help from family on some of the days (thanks to The Mother-in-Law today), so, most of the time, you won’t even notice. But if a hot rumor breaks and I’m a few minutes slow to get it up, now you know I was probably burping a baby.

  • Much to our chagrin, the Cubs are refusing to volley back anything at Dusty Baker/Johnny Cueto after Baker’s suggestion yesterday that Cueto and Matt Garza, who’d called out Cueto for throwing over David DeJesus’s head, should fight. “I don’t have much to say about that,” Sveum said of the exchange, per Cubs.com. “Yesterday is over with. It’s people’s prerogative to make a big thing out of something that was no big thing at all. Those are their comments. I’ve got nothing to really comment on something that’s over with.” Jed Hoyer and David DeJesus wouldn’t really say anything either. Booooooo. I kid. Mostly. At least the two teams play again in a couple weeks …
  • Jeff Samardzija’s first career shutout last night dropped his ERA by 40 points, and helped rocket his WAR up to 1.8 already. Despite a relatively slow start to the year, Samardzija now has the 19th best FIP in baseball.
  • ESPN reports that all eight of Jeff Samardzija’s strikeouts yesterday came on his splitter. It’s definitely his wipeout pitch, but that surprises me, given his superior mix of pitches. I’m trying to picture his strikeouts from last night, and all I can see are splitters (likely because those are nastiest looking ones). It doesn’t really matter, but I’m just curious, I guess. (UPDATE: As Harry notes in the comments, I was right to be suspicious – they weren’t all splitters, though a majority may have been.)
  • However he did it, Samardzija was dominant. White Sox manager Robin Ventura compared Samardzija to young Mets ace Matt Harvey, whom he had previously compared to Justin Verlander. Nice company for Samardzija to find himself in.
  • Jon Greenberg writes about the Cubs’ approach at the plate – or at least the one they aspire to have – and how, for one night, it came together.
  • Apropos of nothing: After taking just one walk in his first 36 games, Welington Castillo has now walked in four straight games. That’s not the shocking statistic. The shocking statistic? His OBP has actually dropped in those four games, from .328 to .325. Remember: OBP ain’t just walking.
  • The Midway Madness guys got a video interview of Albert Almora.
  • Jonathn

    Is that second to last bullet about wellington?

    • Cedlandrum

      yes. It is surprising he walked so little early on. Last year in Iowa he seemed to be a bit better. Looking it up I guess 23 walks in 150 or so abs. Anyway he just seemed to have a good game plan. He has never been super patient, but not as bad as this year.

      • Jay

        “Remember: OBP ain’t just walking”.

        No shit. Which is something I wish they would have thought of before they started messing with Castro’s head and telling him to take pitches instead of using his freakish hand-eye coordination to pile up hits.

        • Aaron

          True, but maybe it will be a good thing long-term. That hand-eye coordination could slip or fade away with age, and the Cubs want to teach him to be more selective now so he can still be productive offensively in 10 years or so.

  • Harry Pavlidis

    all on splitters? Ehhh no.
    4 on splits, 3 on sliders and 1 untracked pitch (as of last night, may come back into the data set later)

    • CubFan Paul

      Espn stats and Information clearly didn’t watch game.

    • http://www.cwsnaturally.com Evolution

      Harry…any idea as to how this measures against previous starts?

      Wondering if he’s played with his mix at all?

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Thanks, Harry. I knew you’d have the good stuff.

  • MXB

    Whose OBP dropped (the apropos bullet)?

  • Jp3

    Why Don’t we let them duke it out? We could do it on an off day and sell tickets for it like we concerts and what not, you know, for additional revenue that we so desperately yern for. I’d hate to miss a chance to make a nickel this season even though we’ll lose 90-100 games… Sorry for the sarcasm spilling over this morning…

  • Diamond Don

    Hey Brett,

    Enjoy the little guy as they change and grow up fast. I bet the first words out of his mouth will be “Go Cubs”!


  • http://www.dccoffeeproducts.com John

    Enjoy the time Brett- I was a stay at home dad and worked from home- now my oldest is graduating HS. It flies bye in a hurry- good luck- hey the bullet about OBP dropping is about?? Sorry missed it.

  • wax_eagle

    Second to last bullet, which player?

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      I updated moments before you asked! Bam!

      • wax_eagle

        Should have refreshed before I asked :) Thought about it, but didn’t

  • Jim

    “few minutes slow to get it up”… #phrasing

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Either reading is fair…

      • Jp3

        Wow. Awesome, well Brett, you can only use that excuse for a short time before she doesn’t believe you

  • spearman

    With Chapman throwing at Swisher’s head twice yesterday, seems like the Reds are trying to start a fight with anybody.

    • @cubsfantroy

      They do have the biggest group of douchebags in baseball.

      • Dynastyin2017

        Being douchebags is one thing, throwing 100 mph fastballs at someono’s head is another. Just can’t happen.

  • Joe

    Cueto fights like a garden implement. Remember when he ended Jason LaRue’s career and forever altered his life because of that kicking like a girl crap?

    Johnny Cueto and Dusty Baker are complete scumbags of the highest order.

  • North Side Irish

    Looks like the Cubs are putting up a sample ad sign in RF to show what it will look like…


  • North Side Irish

    Lance McAlister ‏@LanceMcAlister 42m
    Best records MLB since May 3: #Reds17-5, Cards 16-6, Pirates 15-8
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