I hate the expression “it is what it is.” It used to be an acceptable expression – a kind of “shut it down” response to the troubles of the world – but then everyone started passing it out like candy. So I don’t use it, and I cringe whenever I hear someone use it.

But, well, today … it is what it is.

How else can you describe today’s game against the Yankees? Jason Hammel pitched adequately, but Masahiro Tanaka absolutely dominated the Cubs’ bats in a way that is completely understandable (his array of stuff is just striking, and he commands it all), and completely disappointing. It just … it is what it is. He looked that good.ย The Cubs managed just two bunt singles against Tanaka (one of which was by Anthony Rizzo, bunting against the shift, which thrilled me – it’s always just sitting right there for him to take).

april 16 box

Full box score.

  • http://CubbiesCrib.com GarrettFilsonFS

    U mad Cubs?

    (Yes, very)


    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Yes. That.

  • another JP

    At this point it’s all about individual performances anyway- seeing Rizzo defeat the shift and get two hits off Tanaka is great news. Hammel continues his fine season with a quality start in NY, so that bodes well for his trade value. No real shame in getting beat by one of the best teams in the league.

    • Serious Cubs Fan


    • J. L.

      Rizzo’s second hit came against Kelly. But yeah, it’s nice to see him do well.

      • J. L.


  • Chad

    Mad? No. Disappointed, very much so.

  • HislersHero

    Well, at least I have my mlb the show 14 game. The Cubs are winners on that.

    • DarthHater

      Cheater. ๐Ÿ˜›

  • DarthHater


    • Forlines

      That’s a deep cut meme right there. Good stuff

  • ssckelley

    Not liking the Cubs chances tonight either. :(

    • J. L.

      Well, Pineda has to be gentler to the Cubs lineup than Tanaka.

      The problem is I have a feeling Wood is gonna give up six homers tonight.

  • Kyle

    I laugh every time there’s meltdown over Olt not starting against a righty.

    • Spoda17

      Compared to what..? how well Valbuena is doing? Or anyone else for that matter. If your are judging Olt’s value based on a day against Tanaka, you’re searching.

      • DarthHater

        Every time Kyle laughs, God kills a kitten.

        • Kyle

          You’ve got the correlation and causation mixed up. I laugh at Him killing kittens.

        • MoneyBoy

          Darth… funniest thing I’ve read here in a LONG time!! Kudos, sir… and very much… this!!

          • DarthHater

            You really should get out more, my friend. ๐Ÿ˜‰

      • Kyle

        I didn’t say anything about “judging Olt’s value” based on today.

        • mosconml

          You’re just being annoying with that reply. There was obviously subtext in what you initially wrote.

          You’re implying that Olt shouldn’t start against righties, which is effectively a judgment on his value. And you may not have come to that conclusion based solely on today, but something tells me you wouldn’t have written your post if he had gone 4 for 4.

          Oh, and at the very least, as soon as the Cubs are out of contention (which is likely very soon), they should be starting Olt every day.

          • Kyle

            So if you know that I didn’t come to that conclusion based entirely on today’s performance, then what’s the problem?

            You can start him every day if you wish, it’ll just make it easier to come to the conclusion that he’s got too much swing-and-miss in his game to be an effective major leaguer beyond maybe as a platoon lefty-masher.

            • ari gold

              so do you think Baez has too much swing and miss also?

              • Kyle

                Yes, but I’m *hoping* he can age out of it in a way that Olt can’t.

  • Mr Gonzo

    I may have missed this, but why are the Cubs back to the blue road uniforms? Are the new grey road uniforms too close to pinstripes, so they went with the alternates?

    • Don Eaddy

      They have worn grey and blue on the road in the past. They alternate between the two

  • WilliamGlass721

    I sure hope they would be mad after being shut out. Of course a lineup with Baker, Valbuena and Ruggiano in it is easy to shutout. That said, Tanaka was still dominating! I am tired of seeing strike one looking, strike two looking, strike three swinging at a dirt ball!

    • http://bleachernation.com woody

      Obviously Happy didn’t waste his better players against Tanaka. We’ll have a much better chance tonight. Thankfully Hammel ate up enough innings that we only used Grimm in relief.

      • J. L.

        Who are our best players? Barney and Kalish?

        • http://bleachernation.com woody

          Ha definatly Scrappy Doo wink, wink.

  • CubsFaninMS

    Excuse me, I’d like to ASS you a few questions. Want a mint? Perhaps some TANAKA???

  • http://bleachernation.com woody

    I was reading some stuff about the D-backs and Towers is on the hot seat. Bradley’s agent has gone public with his displeasure that Bradley hasn’t gotten called up. They have a three game set with the Dodgers coming up. We have a battle of the cellar dwellars coming up soon.

    • Serious Cubs Fan

      I’m pretty sure Towers just got an extension

      • http://bleachernation.com woody

        He did, but if you go to D-back fan sites all the talk is how bad the pitching is and why he doesn’t bring Bradley up.

  • On The Farm

    I am more or less mad that Bonificiao is becoming human.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      What makes me mad about it is not his performance; it’s the fact that the Cubs didn’t take advantage of his scorching start and translate it into a bunch of runs and wins.

      • http://iawrestle.com On The Farm

        It’s not that I don’t like RR, or would try to argue anything related to that. I am just saying he has done a few things in this young season that really make me stop and try and figure out his reasoning.

  • Jon

    4-9, second worst record in baseball. Brought to you by the smartest guys in the room.

    • another JP

      Aaaa…. shaddup already.

    • candyland07

      deflection – The plan is the future. the future is the future. all bow to the future. the past means nothing – bow to the plan – The present is nothing it gives us the future – bow to the Plan………..

    • http://bleachernation.com woody

      The D-backs are 4 – 13 Jon. We’re not the worst by a longshot. LOL

  • WilliamGlass721

    I think some of you so called Cubs fans on here are hoping the rebuild fails, just so you can say I told you so.

    • Medicos

      WG721: Being a fan since 1952 (only 17 winning seasons in 62-years) I sure hope the rebuild doesn’t fail. If it does, I’d like to see the Hoystein regime be put on a bus back to Beantown and Dallas Green-Steve Stone be given an opportunity to see if they can construct a roster that compete year after year not just for a 2-3 year span and then be torn apart like what has occurred at the Friendly Confines since 2006-2007-2009.

      • candyland07

        They too old – but after this season is complete – I bet their must be at least 28 other front offices that have performed better than the Cubs . And i will go a step beyond given the draft choices the Cubs have and will get I doubt the selection process would have changed mush with the other 28 Front office . but all that is speculation /

  • Jon

    Just like a politician running on broken promises, you can’t run from your record forever. What’s amazing is this AAAA offense that they still trot out there on a daily bases.
    Grantland headed my advice and actually wrote a nice piece on the White Sox and their turnaround on offense


    This is what should generate praise, tangible results, not a thesis of excuses on why a team is still hot garbage.

  • OlderStyle

    “it is what it is…” I believe Dusty had this sign in his office.

  • candyland07

    Memo – the plan is failing unless your bowing to the future. Some day all those high draft choices will give the Cubs a competitive edge- When that time comes and how the Cubs sign these wonderful players to extensions and We see how the Cubs build the final pieces is when the Cub fans should praise this front office – but it has to happen for it to be successful. until then …. lets just judge the product on the field and let not cheer too far in advance when no results are guaranteed.

    • http://bleachernation.com woody

      Yes and may I add that although we do have some really nice prospects I can’t remember any other team hyping minor leaguers to the point where they have almost become the face of the franchise before they ever set foot in the big leagues. That’s a lot of pressure to put on those kids.

      • nick5253

        Really? Have you heard of the Royals or the Twins.

      • http://iawrestle.com On The Farm

        Steven Strasburg, Mike Trout, Bryce Harper. Those guys were top prospects, who were hyped a season before they made their debut.

  • WilliamGlass721

    I am sure Epstein and Hoyer would love to have the revenue and the tv deal that enables them to spend like the Yankees and Dodgers. They have to work with the resources they are given. Do you guys bashing our front office really think Epstein and Hoyer want us to lose?

    • Kyle

      Yes. I think they want us to lose until they have had time to build an entire team through the farm system. It is their dream. They don’t to win if it’s not that way.

    • http://bleachernation.com woody

      Obviously when your team has under performed to the point that you sell off all of your assets for prospects then yes the intent is to lose. Top ten picks for the last three years and a possible number one next year. Sadly this is how to aquire impact players. For me it is very frustrating to watch this year after year, even though I see the strategy reaping rewards. I just don’t like to see pigs wearing lip stick thats all. I know the value of propaganda and selling a dream of a banquet while serving up spam and spuds without dessert is just that until there is some tangible improvement.

  • mjhurdle

    Really liking what Rizzo is doing. Hemight be gearing up for one heck of a year.

    Hammel looked pretty good today as well. Hopefully he keeps it up.

    fun game to watch today, hopefully tonight’s is as good, only with a Cub’s ‘W’

    • Voice of Reason

      Fun game to watch? Wow

    • Jon

      Unless you just love a dominating pitching performance(by the opponent) what could be possible be fun about your team getting shutout, on 3 hits, two of them bunt singles.

      • mjhurdle

        Well, i always enjoy good pitching performances, especially when it is going on by both pitchers.
        I always enjoy watching the Cubs play.
        I always enjoy seeing players come back from off years.
        I enjoy seeing off-season gambles paying off.

        There was actually a lot i enjoyed about that game.

        • Jon

          I find Off-season gambles paying off a lot nicer when they play for the team you cheer for.

          • miggy80

            Jon you’re getting mjhurdle’s shoulder all wet. Here use this


  • mosconml

    I’m just going to say it, because today’s game made me angry. So semi-ignore the base size issues and recency effect.

    The Cubs should have gone harder for Tanaka.

    The big issues were risk with that lengthy contract and the out clause over 4 years, right? Well, if the Cubs are rolling in money by then, isn’t this a non-issue? I would have loved to have a guy with the stuff Tanaka has, even for four years and even if two of those years are garbage. It’s not like they’re spending the money elsewhere anyway.


    • Voice of Reason

      The cubs were never going to sign Tanaka.

      I’m glad they didn’t.

      If the yanks knew they could sign Garza and Santana for the same price as Tanaka they would have passed on the Japanese pitcher, too.

      • Jon

        “If the yanks knew they could sign Garza and Santana for the same price as Tanaka they would have passed on the Japanese pitcher, too.”


    • http://bleachernation.com woody

      The out clause was the thing that really sealed the deal. If he’s as good as he appears to be and can pickup a Cy Young or two in the next four years he can opt out for a mega contract that could potentially make Kershaw’s contract look like chump change. He’ll still be under thirty years old at that time. The Cubs would just be reaching contention near the end of those four years..We could have matched that offer and he still would have signed with the Yankees for that reason.

      • Brocktoon

        Maybe if the Cubs had a pitcher like Tanaka it wouldn’t take until 2018(!!) to be a contender.

  • WilliamGlass721

    All the pessimists on this site need to step their game up because the Cubs facebook page is far more depressing! :-)

  • md8232

    What-the Whaaat?

  • http://kempfintl.com pfk

    It is what it is.

  • 5412


    I am neither sad or angry. Remember that Tanaka has an opt out in his contract. If he becomes a free agent in 3-4 years and we have a legitimate shot at him (which we did not have this time around) and don’t get him, then I will be very angry. That is assuming we need him to put us over the top


    • Eternal Pessimist

      If Tanaka uses his out clause the Cubs will probably be even further from contention for signing him. He’s already making a buttload of money and the Yankees resources >>>>>>>>>> Cubs resources.

  • Edwin

    Out, out, brief candle!
    Baseball’s but a walking shadow, a poor player
    That struts and frets his hour upon the stage
    And then is heard no more. It is a tale
    Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury
    Signifying nothing