Dale Sveum and Edwin Jackson Argue, We Shrug, and Other Bullets

edwin jackson cubsYour daily family move update (because it’s relevant to the site): the bulk of the move is behind us, but the most critical component as far as you folks are concerned comes this morning. That would be the internet transfer, which could leave me without internet service for a bit today. Fingers crossed that you’ll notice no such thing.

  • So, there was a fight last night. Kind of. Edwin Jackson didn’t want to be pulled after just four innings, and Dale Sveum wanted to use a pinch hitter. They argued. Other folks stepped in. It was anticlimactic, as you’d hope intrasquad fights would be. After the game, both Sveum and Jackson deflected questions about the incident, sufficiently downplaying it that all will be forgotten in a day or two. In a season like this one, after a season like the last one, it’s impressive that there haven’t been more blowups. I’m not trying to minimize the argument – it just really seems like a whole lot of nothing. Zambrano versus Barrett this was not.
  • Anthony Rizzo is this year’s Roberto Clemente Award nominee for the Cubs. The award recognizes a player who best represents the game of baseball through positive contributions on and off the field, including sportsmanship and community involvement, and Rizzo certainly qualifies. His family foundation has been raising funds to fight cancer, and regularly contributes to the community. You can help vote for Rizzo at ChevyBaseball.com, as soon as the voting mechanism is up and in place.
  • Dale Sveum really loves the development of Welington Castillo, and sees defensive improvement in Starlin Castro.
  • Jay Jaffe writes about the Ex-Cub Factor, and focuses in large part on Matt Garza’s struggles since being dealt to the Rangers.
  • Donnie Murphy answers questions over at ESPN. If he played full-time for a season, he thinks he could hit .260ish with 15 to 20 home runs (how’s that for a realistic answer?).
  • The Cubs have been involved in 51 one-run games (holy crap!), according to Carrie Muskat, which is tied for the most in the NL, and is the third-most in baseball (dude, that’s a lot of one-run games in baseball this year). The Cubs are 20-31 in those games, but, before you go saying that means they’re so close to being better, remember: really good teams aren’t in a lot of one-run games. They’re frequently winning by two or more runs.

Brett Taylor is the editor and lead writer at Bleacher Nation, and can also be found as Bleacher Nation on Twitter and on Facebook.

167 responses to “Dale Sveum and Edwin Jackson Argue, We Shrug, and Other Bullets”

  1. Cubbie Blues

    Zambrano vs. Lee this was not.
    Zambrano vs. the cooler this was not.
    Zambrano vs …

  2. Eric

    Hmmm, I can’t agree about the argument. To have such a thing during the game, for all to see, shows a lack of respect from both sides.

    1. Billy

      Disagree with this. A lot actually. It shows me two guys who still give a shit about winning a game no matter what their record is. It’s a complete non deal to me

  3. cubsfanforever

    Sveum wont be around when this team is good. Hell I am not sure he is even a good hitting instructor. Castro Bad, Barney bad. Tries to take players out of their comfort zone. Go Pirates……

    1. Voice of Reason

      Castro Bad, Barney bad… yet Sveum manages to keep this team out of the 100 loss column.

      A major accomplishment on his part. You’re right, this is a VERY bad team!

      1. Jeff

        In 2006, we finished five games ahead of Tampa Bay who selected a guy named David Price with the #1 pick in the 2007 draft. We chose Josh Vitters at #3, who would you rather have picked????

        Guiding us to only 95 loss is not a major accomplishment on his part, quite the opposite.

        1. Jon

          Remember through..We also had a incompetent front office which didn’t believe in investing in the draft, otherwise we would have had Matt Wieters, who would have made a pretty nice booby prize.

          1. Jeff

            I like booby prizes….alot!! :)

          2. Norm

            RIGHT!! Like you wouldn’t be whining about Weiters 230 batting average today, would you?

            1. King Jeff


          3. Joe

            Wieters is having a worse season than Rizzo, I can’t imagine how much hell this coaching staff would be taking if Wieters was struggling for the Cubs.

            1. Jeff

              I like the production we are getting with Navarro and Castillo at 2.2M v. the 5.5M Weiters is getting.

        2. Funn Dave

          And yet, even if David Price were a Cub right now, we would still be very much a losing team. People here act like the only way to build a baseball team is to get the #1 pick every year. Ridiculous.

      2. cubsfanforever

        THERE is no accomplishment for Sveum. Period

        1. Cubs_Questions

          Before Soriano played his last game with Chicago, the Cubs had a 44-54 record, or 0.449 winning percentage. Last year, they had a 0.377 winning percentage. A 0.449 would yield 72-73 wins, a great improvement over 2012.

          Since the Soriano trade, Sveum has had nobody to lean on in the lineup, and unsurprisingly, it has been very lackluster ever since. Obviously, the team has been bad and I don’t think that can be blamed on Sveum.

          Given that the Cubs have very little MLB-ready-to-compete talent, that’s a damn good improvement, and that’s WITH Castro and Rizzo having incredibly down years. I give Sveum a lot of credit. A whole lot more than you’re giving him.

        2. cubmig

          I’m wondering why expectations or blame is an issue. We all knew this was going to be a rebuilding year (and maybe even next) going in. If there is any criticism to be laid, lay it at the feet of the FO. They are the ones selecting, directing and making the adjustments.

  4. jon

    Smart move by Rizzo to do all this “good guy” stuff off the field. It helps deflect criticism for his poor on the field play. It’s a lot easier to attack that young Dominican kid that plays short stop.

    1. C. Steadman

      I’m sure thats the reason he is doing all this charity…not the fact that he is a cancer survivor himself so he knows what those people are going through so he is trying to help them

      1. Hansman1982

        Yup, he woke up one morning and said:

        “You know, I really suck at hitting singles this year, never mind I’m better at, literally, everything else this year, so I need to deflect the heat and give some a-holes some money so everyone will stop noticing how bad I am at hitting singles”

    2. Eric

      Rizzo has been playing badly? On which plane of existence?

      1. Hansman1982

        The Necropolis of Batting Average located in the Province of Singles on the Planes of RBI

      2. Jon

        The plane of “statistical analysis” which has Rizzo ranked 20th in all of baseball lin wOBA for first baseman?

        1. Eric

          So even though he is sitting at a .350 wOBA which is considered above average and borderline great, that’s still performing badly? League average is somewhere around .315 but Rizzo has performed badly?

          Explain it to me. I’m confused.

          1. Jon

            You are confused because you are just citing numbers that are wrong. Rizzo’s wOBA isn’t 350 and 315 isn’t’ league average, for first baseman at least.

            1. Eric

              Please feel to correct me then with his stats and the league average then.

            2. Cubbie Blues
          2. bbmoney

            He’s not at .350. he’s at .325 which is good in general, but just OK for a 1b.

            Rizzo hasn’t been bad. He hasn’t been great. He’s been fine, and his peripherals & age point to better things as some (although not all) of his mere fineness has likely been luck driven.

            1. Eric

              Thanks, I caught my mistake after posting but was hoping Jon actually had the stats to back up his claims. He didn’t, which sort of explains why this conversation is even happening. He has no idea what he’s talking about.

              1. Jon

                Says the dude just randomly making up numbers.

                1. Eric

                  Psst….I posted Rizzo’s wOBA against right-handers. When in hole, stop digging.

                2. bbmoney

                  Says the dude making stupid comments about charity work.

                  Relax. His mistake isn’t on the same level of your ridiculous comment.

          3. DarthHater

            His wOBA is .325, which is not borderline great – it’s 20th among qualifying first basemen in MLB. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not slamming Rizzo and I agree that his season has not been as bad as a lot of folks here seem to think, but the fact is his wOBA this season has been fairly meh.

            1. Jeff

              I think the biggest issue with Rizzo is the lack of protection in the lineup and the fact that he is constantly hitting in the wrong spot in the batting order.

              I like Rizzo alot but he’s not a #3 hitter, he’s probably a good #5 hitter who will provide power and drive in runs as long as we can find better on base % players to have in the 1, 2 & 3 holes.

              1. hansman1982

                “I think the biggest issue with Rizzo is the lack of protection in the lineup and the fact that he is constantly hitting in the wrong spot in the batting order.”

                If this is true, then why is he hitting more XBH this year than last year?

                1. Jeff

                  Hitting more XBH has nothing to do with a lousy AVG and OBP, He’s not in the elite group of Votto, Goldschmidt, Freeman, Davis or Craig. Unless he raises that part of his game, he doesn’t belong hitting #3.
                  But Dale Sveum in his “infinite wisdom” keeps trotting him out there, well, we don’t have a legitimate lead off or #3 hitters, so you Dale lovers can let him off the hook for doing so.

                  1. C. Steadman

                    his OBP is lousy only because his single totals are down…he has a high walk rate, also I dont see where anyone mentioned Rizzo being in that category

                  2. Cubbie Blues

                    Nope, a drop in BABIP have to do with a lousy AVG. Who on this team do you think *should* be hitting 3rd?

                    1. On The Farm

                      Obviously Darwin Barney is the clear 3 hitter.

                    2. hansman1982

                      LOGAN WATKINS with Junior Lake leading off and Castro, Rizzo and Samardzija traded.


                    3. Jeff

                      Unless you can’t read, I’ve already said this team lacks one, Duh…Lol

                      I think Theo’s biggest offseason goal needs to be to go out and get a leadoff hitter (Ellsbury with his 5.5WAR over Choo and his 3.7WAR) and find a #3 hitter.

                      Good luck there, no clue, it’s not easy to find a .300+AVG & .400+ OBP player.

                      Obviosly, On the Farm wants to see Barney in the 3 hole. I’d risk a trade of Barney for Dustin Ackley. I think the former #1 pick needs a change of scenery, worth a one year gamble before Alcantara is ready to be tried at 2nd base.

                      Maybe we could find our own David Ortiz in Ackley, with an infield of Rizzo, Ackley, Castro and Olt in 2014. No worse than what we currently have.

                    4. C. Steadman

                      well, you havent answered the question we’ve all been waiting to hear…if you think Rizzo shouldnt bat #3 this year (“he is constantly hitting in the wrong spot in the batting order”…”But Dale Sveum in his “infinite wisdom” keeps trotting him out there”) …who would you rather have Dale put #3??

                    5. terencemann

                      I’ve said this before but Choo or Ellsbury would immediately be one of the best hitters in the Cubs lineup if not the best at the moment. Would you really want them to bat that guy lead-off or give them a chance to hit with a runner on in front of them? Take DeJesus, for example, who’s more of a lead-off type hitter but batted 3rd a lot for the Cubs for good reason…

                    6. Cubbie Blues

                      “Unless you can’t read, I’ve already said this team lacks one, Duh…Lol”
                      There should be a space before and after the “…”

                      “I think Theo’s biggest offseason goal needs to be to go out and get a leadoff hitter (Ellsbury with his 5.5WAR over Choo and his 3.7WAR) and find a #3 hitter. Good luck there, no clue, it’s not easy to find a .300+AVG & .400+ OBP player.”
                      Since there are only 7 players in all of baseball that fit that mold, yes, you are right we won’t find a player like that. Unless, you want to include Choo who is one of those seven.

                      “Obviosly, On the Farm wants to see Barney in the 3 hole. I’d risk a trade of Barney for Dustin Ackley. I think the former #1 pick needs a change of scenery, worth a one year gamble before Alcantara is ready to be tried at 2nd base.”
                      “Obviously”, On The Farm was dismissing you and making a joke.

                      “Maybe we could find our own David Ortiz in Ackley, with an infield of Rizzo, Ackley, Castro and Olt in 2014. No worse than what we currently have.”
                      Maybe, we have many IF prospects with 2 probably coming up next year some time in Baez and Bryant.

                  3. hansman1982

                    “Hitting more XBH has nothing to do with a lousy AVG and OBP”

                    I never mentioned anything about AVG or OBP or Votto or anything else. I simply asked that if Rizzo is suffering from a “lack of protection” then why is he hitting XBH at a higher rate than last year?

                    The only stat this “lack of protection” has impacted has been his singles rate, which is counter-intuitive.

                    1. Jeff

                      My argument is that Rizzo needs to be the protection not the #3 hitter, I would prefer to see him hitting #4 or #5 depending on if we can find a right handed power hitter to hit 4th, like Olt, Baez, Soler or Bryant.

              2. C. Steadman

                cause he will get so much protection from hitting in front of the6th hitter in the lineup than the 4th hitter…kinda contradicted yourself there…Rizzo is a fine #3 on these kind of Cubs teams, but I agree with number 5 spot if Baez and Bryant are producing at the rate they are projected to…key word projected…I like Rizzo in the three hole until Baez and Bryant show they can push him outta that spot

                1. On The Farm

                  Its just so tough with Baez and Bryant because Rizzo has already been where they are now, tearing up the minors. I think the longer Rizzo is in the major leagues, and as he approaches his peak years, he will be a fine #3 hitter.

                  1. C. Steadman

                    yeah, I said the only reason to knock Rizzo outta the #3 spot is if Baez and Bryant are producing and force the managers hand to put them there…Im not saying gift Baez and Bryant the spot when theyre pulled up

                  2. Cubbie Blues

                    I would absolutely love for him to be our 4th best hitter.

                  3. terencemann

                    I agree that it’s a good probability that Rizzo will be the best hitter on the team for a few more seasons unless there is some sort of freak performance from the rookies. He’ll have time to make adjustments between now and when guys like Baez or Bryant are seeing MLB pitching for the first time.

                2. cubchymyst

                  If all of them are preforming at a high level then Rizzo might be a good choice to split up the two Righties.

              3. hansman1982

                “and the fact that he is constantly hitting in the wrong spot in the batting order.”

                Holy hell, how did I miss this gem. What are you talking about here?

                1. C. Steadman

                  “so you Dale lovers can let him off the hook for doing so”

                  or how’d we miss this…callin us Dale lovers..c’mon man

                2. Jeff

                  Your really going to argue that Rizzo is a legit #3 hitter compared to the rest of the league???

                  Admit it, everyone has been bitching about the lack of hitting that has killed this team all year.

                  We lack a leadoff guy and a #3 hitter, it’s not too hard to see that is it?

                  “NNOOOO, Rizzo’s our #3!!!!!!!””””””””””””””


                  1. Jon

                    It’s alot simpler, we just lack good hitters.

                  2. bbmoney

                    Just because of the awesome freak-out in this comment and total lack of comprehension about what’s being discussed regarding Rizzo hitting #3.


                  3. C. Steadman

                    you were arguing that Rizzo shouldnt even be hitting 3 right now on this Cubs team, thats what drew so many responses, we arent arguing that Rizzo is elite, just that right now and into next year, yeah he’s our #3 hitter

                  4. cub2014

                    Jeff, we lack a #1,3,4. We have lots
                    of options for a #2 I like Rizzo as a
                    #5 and Castro as a #2 or #8. If we
                    bring in a couple hitters at the top
                    add a couple of rookies at the bottom
                    then the lineup starts to look way better

                    1. Jeff

                      Thank You, at least one person who can see objectively and isn’t only on here just so they can argue with people and be antagonistic.

                    2. Cubbie Blues

                      You are calling other people antagonistic? Don’t blame us for the fact you haven’t been able to back up your claim.

                    3. Jeff

                      I state my opinions, I don’t go out of my way to attack people for a different point a view like some people on here.

                      If you disagree with me and have a different point of view, that’s fine, but this antagonism that exists on this board is near ridiculous at the level people attack one another for different points of views.

                      I enjoy a healthy debate, but leave the snarkiness out of it, it’s in rather poor taste and only elicits reaction from others, which is what most on here are hoping for and get off on.

                      Some people on here need to back away from the argument, develop done objectivity and respect for others.

                    4. Cubbie Blues

                      Let’s get it straight. You were the first to attack someone, me. Also, you kept moving goal posts and putting up straw men. You originally stated that Rizzo shouldn’t be hitting #3 on the current squad and that he kept on being moved around and he had no protection. You thought he should be hitting #5 on the current team. If one were to believe in protection (which I don’t) hitting #5 instead of #3 would give him less *protection*. Plus, nobody said Rizzo is our future #3 (you should have defined what you think a #3 hitter is) just that he is currently fine there. You really shouldn’t have that much of a problem with others rebutting your claims. Especially if you can back them up. Just don’t go changing the goal-posts in mid-stream.

                    5. mjhurdle

                      I find it funny that you would complain about other people’s snarkiness, when you yourself post stuff like

                      “But Dale Sveum in his “infinite wisdom” keeps trotting him out there, well, we don’t have a legitimate lead off or #3 hitters, so you Dale lovers can let him off the hook for doing so.”

                      nope, nothing in that post that would be construed as a snarky attempt to elicit a response. not at all.

                    6. MichiganGoat

                      Why some people get bent out of shape when their preconceived notions and beliefs are questioned and challenged is really frustrating on this site. Then pair that with a refusal to back up claims with facts and supporting evidence and instead of doing some research to start crying, “someone is being snarky and mean to my opinions and I’m going to take my ball and go home.”

                      When did this site develop the complete inability to take a punch and have a sense of humor? People will disagree with you, people will call out your fallacies, people will slap you with some humorous jabs. The lack of “rolling with the punches” is something this page has been lacking for months. If you need a site that will tell you how special you are its time to find another site.

                      This is BleacherNation, We are The Children of Tidrow, We Stashe Slap!

                    7. MichiganGoat

                      btw I think I’ve discovered the new BN T-shirt motto

                      “This is BleacherNation, We are The Children of Tidrow, We Stashe Slap!”

                    8. hansman1982

                      “Why some people get bent out of shape when their preconceived notions and beliefs are questioned and challenged is really frustrating on this site.”

                      To be fair, this is a problem in all of humanity. Noone likes to be wrong.

                    9. Cubbie Blues

                      Aren’t we all a little “special”?

                    10. MichiganGoat

                      Correct Hans I just miss those golden years around here.

              4. DocPeterWimsey

                People need to abandon the traditional idea of a #3 hitter. Where Rizzo should be hitting in this lineup is #2: after all, *that* is where your best overall hitter should bat. (Remember, RIzzo’s BA, and thus OBP and wOBA are weighted down by a very low singles rate on batted balls: his isolated slugging and walk rates both are good.)

                Now, Rizzo did say that he was not “comfortable” there, but he then went on to regurgitate the superstition about what a #2 hitter should do: ground out to the opposite side to advance runners. (That was a wonderful example of Grimmsian evolution: “hit to the right side” evolved into “ground out to the right side” evolved into “ground out to the opposite side”; that is, of course, is really pointless for a LHB, but it also shows the comprehension of tactics that players have.)

                1. MichiganGoat

                  Man I was waiting for someone to discuss the #2 hitter is where your best overall hitter should bat. But when BA is how we judge players I should expect for people to still believe that the #3 hitter is where you bat your best hitter.

                  So much to still unlearn before we can start to learn.

                  1. MightyBear

                    Are you too saying that if Ted Williams or Babe Ruth were playing now, they would be batting 2nd?

                    1. hansman1982

                      This is what would be optimal.

                    2. hansman1982

                      The thinking is, your best hitter is also the one most likely to get on base; however, you don’t want to stick them in your leadoff slot batting with either no shot to have someone on base or directly behind the pitcher.

                      By batting them second, you utilize their power when the leadoff batter gets on and, in the ~33% of the time they reach base without hitting a home run, you have a chance of having someone else knock them in.

                    3. Cubbie Blues

                      Here is a great rundown of lineup construction based on The Book.


                    4. MichiganGoat

                      Yes they should but as baseball is right now they won’t but they should.

                    5. miggy80

                      That is why I batted 2nd, and I’m sure I batted higher in the line up than most people on this site so I would know better than most.

                    6. MichiganGoat

                      Well played Miggy

                    7. miggy80


                2. MightyBear

                  Totally disagree with this line of thinking. When I construct my lineup I will not have Ted Williams, Babe Ruth, Albert Pujols or Joey Votto batting 2nd. They’ll bat third (Unless I have them all on the same team, in that case, I’ll do the Billy Martin hat trick.)

                  1. MichiganGoat

                    Do you disagree because the old school wisdom says you bat your best hitters 3/4? The numbers and logic Tango laid out on lineup construction is hard to ignore and shows how your 2 hitter will see more AB and run scoring opportunities. And don’t you want your best hitter at the place where they see the most AB and have the most opportunities to score a run?

                    1. C. Steadman

                      based on that article, its saying that the Pujols and Vottos should be batting 4th not 2nd…”The cleanup hitter is the best hitter on the team with power”

                    2. hansman1982

                      #2 and #4 should be your best two hitters. If they got the same number of PA, the #4 would be the better hitter but so long as you are putting your two highest wOBA players in these two slots, I don’t think you can go wrong.

                    3. wilbur

                      All Tango’s numbers are from games and lineups that were based on the “old way” of doing things. None of his analyses and numbers are from lineups using the best hitter in the two hole. He’s making conjectures that basically just say if you put your best hitter in the two hole you’ll score more runs than you do with the punch hitter there, but he doesn’t factor in where you then put the punch hitter or the loss of three run homers etc because he doesn’t have that data, he just is cherry picking. It is like saying if you put your best hitter at 1, 2, 3, 4, etc 9 you would improve your lineup. Well sure, cloning aside, this is the logical extension of his argument and why it doesn’t apply as he says it does. But he got a book and a job with the cubs out of it so maybe after he does have some data and he refines his conclusions based on real data not conjecture then he may have something.

                    4. hansman1982

                      Read about statistics, you will then see that all it ever deals with is the probability of something happening.

                      Lineup optimization has been tried and tested numerous times and each time it comes out that your #2 and #4 slots see the highest frequencies of batting with men on base and that the dip in production from 20 PA a year of having the pitcher bat 8th is offset by having a higher OBP guy in front of the best parts of the lineup.

                      What is interesting is the fans unwillingness to accept sabermetrics even though all of the top organizations in the game today heavily utilize them.

                  2. Kyle

                    Interestingly, 3rd isn’t really near the top of the list of best places to bat such a hitter. Third has some unique properties.

                    1. TWC

                      As in coming to the plate w/ 2 outs and the bases empty more than any other batting order position.

                    2. Kyle

                      Sorry, that was vague.

                      The third batter has an unusually high frequency of coming to bat with two outs. This is both because he bats third in the first inning, and because he’s not that far behind the 8 and 9 hitters when the lineup turns over.

                      Because of this, the third hitter should be a guy who gets as much of his value as possible from SLG (which is at its peak value later in innings) and less from OBP (which goes down in value with more outs).

                      A guy like Soriano is ideal at No. 3

                    3. MichiganGoat

                      I do wonder where the idea of 3 being the best hitter comes from. I can understand the 4 spot- in a perfect world the bases are loaded with no outs in the first inning and you want a grand slam, but wonder when 3 became the new 4.

                  3. TWC

                    If you have all those guys on the same team it really doesn’t matter where they hit. But if you don’t, you’re giving up runs if you bat them lower than 2nd.

    3. TWC

      “It helps deflect criticism for his poor on the field play.”

      Man, what a cynical, dickheaded thing to say. Get bent, jagload.

      1. DarthHater

        You have such a way with words, my friend.

        1. Wilbur

          I agree with the sentiment, but could never have been as eloquent …

          1. TWC

            All those years at Exeter really paid off!

      2. chrisfchi

        I can’t even begin to state how horrible and ass backwards a statement like that can even be made. Jon, I really hope one day you meet someone who has survived cancer or you have to take care of someone battling that horrible disease. I can give two shits if he never plays ball again as long as he can show others that they can win the battle.

    4. fortyonenorth

      Hey Jon,

      You obviously spent the better part of the morning trying to come up with something witty to say and the best you could do is to criticize a cancer survivor for trying to help sick kids. Wow. At the end of the day, the on-the-field stuff matters not. I’d venture to guess that Rizzo would trade a hall of fame career if he could save a single kid. Why don’t you spend a day at children’s hospital and then check back in. Maybe you won’t feel quite so cocky.

      1. cubsfanforever

        Agreed. JON you are an ass clown.

        1. Jon


  5. Eternal Pessimist

    “The Cubs are 20-31 in those games, but, before you go saying that means they’re so close to being better, remember: really good teams aren’t in a lot of one-run games.”

    …and of course good teams tend to win more one run games than they lose, and bad teams tend to lose more one run games than they win. the losing team needs to add 2 runs to each of those losing games to become the winner, not just one.

    1. cubchymyst

      1 run games W-L records are not a good predictor of a team success that season. There will be good teams with more 1 run losses then 1 run wins. Example are the Tigers, this year they are 17-22 in one run games but 32-14 in blowouts (5+ run difference). The Red Sox are 21-18 in 1 run games (only 3 games above 0.500), but 31-12 in blowouts. The difference is they have only played in 39 1 run games piece while the Cubs have been in 51. Good teams avoid 1 run games by outscoring their opponent by 2 or more runs.

      1. Eternal Pessimist

        My comment was a generality, not a law of the universe. Thus I said “tend to” to avoid making an absolutist comment.

        Selecting a couple examples of teams that didn’t have this differential doesn’t refute my general point.

        1. cubchymyst

          It might not refute your general point, but a teams record in 1 run games does not give a lot of information on a teams true ability (which was my point).

  6. Eternal Pessimist

    Just read that Castro has had only 4 errors in since late June. He really has improved his defense a lot in the second half of the season. Kudos for that….now stop pounding those balls into the ground (no pun intended).

  7. RD

    I was frustrated when Lake was removed for Darnell McDonald last night in a double-switch situation. Lake needs regular AB’s and outfield exposure at this point, not to mention, Darnell McDonald is terrbile and hit into an inning ending double play… And what is the deal with Watkins never getting a look? It’s not like Barney is playing his trade value up any and Watkins, who is also young and needs reps, has been virtually sitting on the bench for about 2 months now.

    1. wvcubsfan

      Maybe, just maybe the people that get paid to evaluate baseball talent feel like Barney is the better option. I know that’s hard to believe that a group of random, anonymous internet posters don’t have all of the Cubs issues figured out, but that might actually be the case.

      1. DarthHater

        Yea, well, that’s just your opinion, man! :-P

      2. wilbur

        Who you calling random?

      3. wilbur

        Besides, haven’t you ever heard of “Cloud Consensus”? if not, maybe I just made it up…

        1. Wilbur

          It would appear there are two “Wilbur’s”, the Universe is now in balance …

          1. C. Steadman

            oh geez…one of you add a picture, quick!

            1. Jon


              1. wilbur

                I didn’t know there were so many royal fans around here, or is it clevland?

    2. Jon

      Why does Logan Watkins need reps? He’s terrible. He’s not part of the future, which is why he is here in the first place.

    3. willis

      Watkins is a dead non issue around here. But, I agree the double switch removing Lake for McDonald, to bring in a pitcher who isn’t that good just to give up more runs…another gem by the manager. Lake wasn’t having a great game at the plate, but he needs the ABs. It’s the second time in a week Sveum has yanked him for a double switch.

  8. DarthHater

    EJax must have looked at Sveum. Big mistake.

  9. papad1945

    I just what to thank Theo for Sveum a& Jackson. Ha Ha

  10. On The Farm

    Sharma posted an article on ESPN Chicago about the top prospects. Just thought I would share it since Brett is moving and what nots:


    1. cubchymyst

      Thanks for posting that link, it is a good read and summary of several of the Cubs top prospects.

      1. On The Farm

        I personally liked the section on Blackburn, the other guys get all of the press -not that they don’t deserve it or haven’t earned it -so it is nice to hear about another up-and-comer so to speak. I am really hoping we can just get one of Maples, Blackburn, or Underwood to pan out. Those three alone should provide plenty of reason to head out and see Kane County next Summer.

        1. cubchymyst

          Right now out of those 3 I like Blackburn the most. Maples seems destined for the bullpen and Underwood is still more projection then results.

          1. On The Farm

            Yeah, hate to use an overused phrase, but Maples is in a kind of prove it year. I believe he will be 21 and will be starting for Kane County. With his filthy stuff, as long as he stops walking 8 guys per 9 IP, he could get his way to Daytona. Even with a 4+ BB/9 in Boise his ERA and FIP weren’t terrible. As for Underwood, next season will be his age 20 season. He has a pretty high BB/9 too, and just seemed to struggle in Boise. It will just be a big year for these three in terms of their future in the sport.

            1. C. Steadman

              I think Underwood fell victim to a slow start along with high BB/9…his June, July, and August ERA totals were 7.82, 5.01, and 2.95 respectively(walk rate didnt really dip much) …apologize for throwing out ERA without FIP, didnt know where you got FIP, On the Farm

              1. On The Farm

                I used Fangraphs ( http://www.fangraphs.com/statss.aspx?playerid=sa657936&position=P ). Underwood’s FIP was 4.65 for the season.

                1. C. Steadman

                  ah sweet, thanks, been looking for minor league sabermetrics bc BR doesnt have them

                  1. On The Farm

                    I perfer Fangraphs to BR. I think Fangraphs is easier to navigate and sort when I am looking for particular stats or players.

                    1. C. Steadman

                      i’m starting to convert, especially with these minor league sabermetrics on FG

  11. miggy80

    If anybody is following along with the Series She View over on the message board there has been an update due to the change in the reverse standings.

  12. Good Captain

    I wonder if Garza wishes he accepted the Cub’s extension offer now?

    1. Jon

      I’m guessing no.

  13. terencemann

    I really like that Donnie Murphy was so frank in his answer. It’s always interesting when players don’t beat around the bush.

  14. Mtrlill

    Sveum is a bumpkin. He still cant figure out how to manage a pitching staff. Time for him to go…

    1. MichiganGoat

      or is he Fuzzy Lumpkins?

      1. MightyBear
        1. MightyBear

          That didn’t work.

          1. Cubbie Blues

            We can see that.

        2. hansman1982


        3. mjhurdle

          Or maybe he is smashing a pumpkin?


          1. Patrick W.

            Perhaps he Rupert Pupkin?


          2. Headscratchin

            That kid will never make it in the bigs. Weight transfer is way to late causing a severe upper cut. Ceiling is warning track power.

  15. Mtrlill

    Sveum has the appearance and intellect of someone working at the local Grease Monkey. He just doesn’t seem to fit the mold of our front office. Still surprised he was hired by them and more surprised he isn’t getting any heat about the job he is doing.

    1. Jon

      Theo/Jed knew him from their Boston days. The most important job a manager can do for a rebuilding team is not burn out the young arms, and let the young position players, play.

    2. DarthHater


      1. Annie

        Oh, my. Recess time for Darth.

        1. DarthHater

          Oh, my, I feel really bad, Annie that you have been waiting for a couple weeks for me to post an image so you could jump on it. It must be hard to just sit there and play with yourself for that long.

  16. Aaron

    Rizzo isn’t setting the world on fire this season, but remember that this is his first full season in the majors. The league has made adjustments to him since last season. Now this off-season, he needs to make his own adjustments. His wOBA is against right hand pitchers is .350, which is above average. However, this wOBA against left handers is below average…around .300. It’s clear what he needs to work on. He appears to be a good kid and a hard worker, so I think he’ll be ok. This is something to keep our eyes on. If Rizzo cannot improve his stats against lefties, he will become a platoon player at first base, who play primarily against right handed pitchers.

    In the meantime, big Dan Vogelbach is moving up through the Cubs’ system with his eyes on 1B with the Cubbies in the next few years. Should be an interesting battle to see who is the long-term solution at 1B.

  17. On The Farm

    Just saw something on rotoworld (checking out Fantasy Football stuff) and saw that the Angels are considering taking a run at Tanaka. That is just craziness on craziness.

    1. mjhurdle

      Darn, my yard is out of control and i was hoping to make a run on Tanaka too. But if the Angels are in, might get too pricey…

  18. Aaron

    mjhurdle…think about all of the promotion ideas with Tanaka the player and manufacturer. Sounds like a brand new corporate sponsor for whatever team that signs him.

  19. Fastball

    I got Jackson in round 2. TKO 40 seconds inro second round.

    1. mjhurdle

      It would all depend on if he was throwing his punches with conviction that night or not.

      1. On The Farm

        Advanced metrics would suggest he is a better punch thrower than he appears.

        1. willis

          Hahaha, good points. Just thinking though, as much as the contract to EJax has been complained about by many cub fans, it would be worth every penny if he and Sveum fought, he lays Sveum out cold, and we all get to see it. Would be magical.

        2. Cubbie Blues

          I would bet that Sveum fights dirty. Anybody that gets shot by a HOF in the ear while hunting and keeps going is a tough SOB (yes, I realize it was *just* bird shot).

    2. Cizzle

      And after Sveum gets laid out he yells ” Did you hit me with your right hand or did you hit me with your left? When you get in a fight with a drunk you don’t hit him with your pitching hand.”…and it was the best coaching Dale ever gave.

  20. Die hard

    Castro Rizzo and Jackson for Trout– done deal if Cubs approached and throw in Sveum as bullpen coach

    1. Gutshot5820

      You want to know what’s sad? If we sent them our entire core, they probably wouldn’t trade Trout for them. Without even blinking, it would take less than a second to say NO. That’s the state of our franchise.

      1. MichiganGoat

        Its the state of Trout. He is projecting to be on of the greats of all time, why would a team ever give up a kid that is performing at this level at his age for any package? But if it helps you feel bad about the Cubs then go ahead.

        1. Cubbie Blues

          I’m guessing the state of Trout is somewhere around Montana?

      2. Norm

        That’s the state of EVERY franchise.

  21. Jono

    I liked the meme thing more when it was just Darth posting them

    1. DarthHater

      You are obviously a man of taste. Good or bad taste is a separate question… ;-)

  22. Mtrlill

    Sveum = Bumpkin

    An unsophisticated person. Not very intellegent or interested in culture. Generally refers to someone living in a rural area.

    1. Jono

      is this 1924?

    2. bbmoney

      you should really learn how to use the reply button if you’re accusing someone else of being a bumpkin.

  23. BlameHendry

    I never thought I’d say this but the last few losses have made me a little happy. I’m already getting genuinely excited for next years draft pick!

  24. willis

    Al Yellon ‏@bleedcubbieblue 3m
    Never mind, then. RT @carriemuskat: That meeting will be between Sveum and EJackson. Not team meeting. #Cubs

    1. willis

      Should have posted first tweet also, and don’t get on me about Al. I just copied the first tweet I saw regarding this. First one said cubs to have team meeting before game, then this right after. Sveum and Ejax are meeting before the game.

  25. iowacubs

    Dont know if its already been posted but the Triple A Championship game is live on NBC Sports channel

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