Today’s 10-year anniversary is worse than yesterday’s, right? Today is the 10-year anniversary of the day the Cubs could have made yesterday’s 10-year anniversary little more than a footnote. The Cubs took a 5-3 lead into the 5th inning in Game Seven of the 2003 NLCS against the Marlins, and that was the last time they were even remotely close to a World Series appearance.
- The Dodgers broke through against the Cardinals last night in this year’s edition of the NLCS, winning 3-0 to make the series 2-1 in favor of the Cardinals. Hyun-Jin Ryu – perhaps the one big-timer of the past two years on whom it’s fair to say the front office whiffed – held the Cardinals without a hit until the fifth inning, and scoreless over seven innings. But if you’re thinking Ryu pitched well or the Dodgers had timely, productive at-bats, think again. “It wasn’t very characteristic of how we played all season,” Cardinals manager Mike Matheny told MLB.com after the loss. “We’re a better club than this.” You don’t beat the Cardinals. They choose to lose to you.
- Yasiel Puig is still trying to out-flip Luis Valbuena, which is unfair, because Puig has a playoffs’-worth of extra at bats in which to strut. You will rarely see a guy celebrate so ostentatiously at the beginning and end of a triple.
- The Mesa Solar Sox were back in action yesterday in the AFL, and Kris Bryant, Jorge Soler, and Matt Loosen saw action. Although the Solar Sox won again to stay undefeated, it was the first of the team’s wins that wasn’t really thanks primarily to Cubs prospects. Bryant was 1-4 with an RBI and a run, and Loosen gave up a couple earned in his 2.1 innings of work (no walks, though). Soler once again went 1-5 with a double and a couple strikeouts. The rust may be showing, as Soler saw just one ball the entire game – otherwise it was strikes looking, foul balls, or whiffs. Having not played in a game since early June, it was going to take a little time to get comfortable again.
- CSN digs into the state of first base in the Cubs’ system, primarily with looks at Anthony Rizzo and Dan Vogelbach. Dustin Geiger probably could have been mentioned, but that’s about all she wrote for the Cubs and first baseman. Of course, that’s partly because many of the best first baseman are only moved there when it becomes necessary.
- FanGraphs looks at Welington Castillo as a fantasy prospect next year, which is interesting for the stat projection if nothing else. It turns out that his elevated career BABIP isn’t completely unreasonable, despite his lack of speed.
- Baseball Prospectus’s Jason Parks knows prospects. He also knows performance art, as tied to a San Diego Padres podcast. Of relevance here, Parks is chatting at noon CT today at BP, and you can submit questions in advance if you’d like.
- This has nothing to do with the Cubs, baseball, or sports. But sometimes the Internet tosses you something that must be consumed by as many people as possible, and it is my sworn duty to share. Chinese Food.