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Jeff Samardzija was absolutely fantastic in this one, allowing just three hits and two walks over nine innings. He allowed no earned runs and struck out seven. His stuff looked better as the game went on.

(I’ll save my grousing about the handling of Samardzija at the end of the game for later. I’d like to hear what Ricky Renteria has to say before coming out both guns blazing. Suffice it to say, in the moment, I was not very happy to see Samardzija out there and allowed to throw 126 pitches.)

The problem? As it always is when Samardzija starts? The Cubs’ bats were mostly silent all night long, even as the game marched on into free baseball. They had some chances, though.

There was a rough missed call in the 9th on a Starlin Castro should-have-been single, where the throw to first pulled Adam Dunn off the bag – you can see it pretty clearly on replay – as Castro arrived. The only argument would be that Dunn somehow caught the ball before jumping, which doesn’t really make a lot of sense. Instead of first and second with one out, it was a man on second and two outs, and Welington Castillo struck out to end the frame.

The game went to extras, and, unfortunately, Justin Grimm imploded in the 12th inning, and the Cubs lost.

may 5 box

Full box score.

  • http://www.bleachernation.com Luke

    Living out of market and having MLB.TV means I never have to listen to Hawk.

    Ever.

    Yes, it is in fact as glorious as it sounds.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Except I do, too. And the CSN feed on MLB.tv was completely jacked.

      So I was stuck. It’s truly unbelievable the way he calls games, and I just can’t fathom why White Sox fans haven’t said enough. I would hate it if Len and JD were like that.

      • http://www.bleachernation.com Luke

        Ouch.

        I remember last year you could patch the radio feed into the game video, but I haven’t had that option this year.

      • JasonP

        Meh, Hawk is entertaining in a train wreck sort of way. Plus the long silences that occasionally occur are fantastic; I’d give anything if I could regularly see games with no commentary.

        Steve Stone >>>>>>>>>> JD.

        • JasonP

          I’m not just talking mute button either, gotta hear the sounds of the game.

          • Head and Heart

            I hear this complaint from sports fans from time to time. I honestly think the vast majority who say they’d prefer no commentary would find that is in fact not the case.

        • Brocktoon

          Stone is a pompous blowhard who fits perfectly with Harrelson.

      • http://www.friendly-confines.com hansman

        Get the mlb.com app on your phone and subscribe to the radio feed. $3 a month and you can listen to Pat all the time.

        WORTH.EVERY.THOMAS.JEFFERSON.AND.GEORGE.WASHINGTON.

        • Melrosepad

          I do SiriusXM Internet radio and listen to them that way. Only downside is I also normally have the MLB GameDay going as well and GameDay is usually two or so batters ahead of the broadcast.

        • Ivy Walls

          If you have MLB premium you can simultaneously listen to Pat and watch the Cubs, sometimes not in time but yes Brett their feed from CSN was choppy.

          As for the Cubs, Hammel had a big hit on Sunday and Samardz had one last night, If the Cubs are not to allow their fans go off with indifference they need to find a run producer in the OF

      • JulioZuleta

        I think most Sox fans have had enough of him, at least the ones I know. I can’t figure out why the team (channels?) have kept him around.
        I regularly watch White Sox games on mute. There’s just something about him, his ineptitude is rubbing off on Stone, too. He’s gotten progressively worse since he’s been with Hawk.

      • Head and Heart

        That’s interesting because my MLB.tv CSN feed here in Canada was fine. In fact it was one of the best this year in terms of the HD on the PS3.

        • Beast Mode

          Mine too. Which weird because it has been pretty bad most of the season.

          • Head and Heart

            Yeah so has mine. The latest update to the ipad app has helped. And Google Chrome seems to be the best bet on my macbook pro. So those two working normally has helped. I was getting pretty frustrated at the start of the season. But I prefer watching on the PS3 on my flat screen. And that has been glichy almost all season up until last night.

      • Isaac

        My favorite part last night was when he was CERTAIN De Aza was safe at second “they are gonna challenge, but they ain’t gonna win it.”

        He was so obviously out on in both regular action and replay. Seriously, the guy has to go. He is a disgrace to the profession.

        • Head and Heart

          I just went back and watched that play with the Sox broadcast on just to hear that. It was glorious. On the live play Hawk called him safe before the tag was even applied. Stone with a “even though he tagged him on the head” line as well. Which he clearly didn’t. Why would you say stuff like that without watching a replay first? Then even after the replay they didn’t change their tune until they’d seen it 3 or 4 times.

  • ChrisFChi

    Don’t feel bad Brett. I don’t have cable and got stuck listening to Hawk. I actually thought about stabbing myself in the ears to avoid it.

  • jadebuddha

    Having to listen to Hawk is cruel and unusual punishment that is not even softened by the gloriousness of Steve Stone.

  • willis

    Hell of a start by Shark. But, I agree 126 is a little much. I’ve questioned some of the pitching decisions to this point, but that one and yanking Wright after one batter baffled me. It worked once, it didn’t the other time. Too bad for Shark though…he was dynamite tonight.

  • JulioZuleta

    I know it’s early, but I am a little worried about Renteria. Just questionable decision after questionable decision. Sac bunts…pitching Rondon in 4 straight games when you have an 8 man pen…I could go on.

    I was particularly pissed tonight. I would bet that had Samardzija struck out Viceido (instead of inducing the DP), Renteria would have left him in to finish the 9th and go over 130 pitches. When a guy is at 123 pitches, and has walked the last two batters, NO WAY, you let him face the next hitter. I cannot fathom any possible scenario where RR let’s him retire Viciedo, and then pulls him after that. Just doesn’t make any sense.

    That’s ignoring the fact that he let him hit in the 8th, and that it was, like, 30 degrees in Chicago tonight. I have a feeling he is going to get an earful from his bosses after that.

    Again, it’s early, but I’m not a fan of what RR is doing so far.

    • Billy

      I agree his decision making has been terrible, but I remember when Doc Rivers first started coaching with the Celtics he was regularly made fun of for his handling of rotations, his game management and use of time outs. Obviously he has gotten better as he’s now a top coach in the NBA, so let’s hope RR learns from his mistakes and gradually gets better

      • Brocktoon

        I’ a Celtics fan and still have nightmares of Scalabrine playing 20 minutes in the finals against the Lakers. I wanted Rivers forced out to clear the spot for Thibodeau.

  • CeeDeeVee

    As much as people keep being livid over Barney and Kalish playing, I rather see them play than Schierholtz. Nobody seems to mention him. He has been AWFUL. Kalish looks like an All-Star out there compared to him.

    FO made a big mistake in being greedy & asking for too much for him last year.

    • JulioZuleta

      Yes, one of the biggest mistakes the front office has made here was the overplaying of the Dejesus/Schierholtz hand last summer. Gave up Dejesus for nothing, and kept Nate too long.

      • http://www.friendly-confines.com hansman

        Eh, trade deadline DeJesus wasn’t going to be worth much coming off injury.

        • JulioZuleta

          He was worth *something*, though.

          • http://www.friendly-confines.com hansman

            True and in the end he was still worth *something*.

            The question is, was July(something) = August(something) + Risk(bad thing happening)

            • waittilthisyear

              something to consider when discussing “receiving nothing” for the likes of nate or dioner is the leverage the FO has kept when they continue to have such high demands in future trades. showing the ability to resist accepting the best offer if it does not meet their demands makes their demands credible, and it is important to demonstrate that.

              now, id rather have an interesting young piece that that leverage, but, glass half full

            • Brocktoon

              He was worth something, but we didn’t get anything out of it. We let him go to the Nats for free.

              • Chad

                I thought they got someone back out of that. Am I dreaming?

                • gocatsgo2003

                  Cash.

                • Brocktoon

                  Nats got a lottery ticket when they traded him to the Rays a week later. We just let him go via waivers.

      • wkranz

        This is the entire point. Do you think there were better offers sitting out there for DeJesus that the Cubs decided not to take? Teams don’t trade their future for journeymen/released outfielders who had 80 good games. Most of the time, teams willing to trade for these players already have a decent lineup (thus they are in the race). How much do you give up for a 4th outfielder? Schierholtz would have netted about what DeJesus got and people would have been up in arms. Cubs did not miss out on anything by keeping him other than a long shot, borderline non-prospect.

        • Brocktoon

          Yet Scott Hairston returned a top 20 Nats prospect.

          • SenorGato

            Pineyro isn’t anything special. He’s a short soft tossing RH who’s walking 4 per 9 right now.

            • Melrosepad

              So we should ignore the fact that his previous three years he had 2.6, 2.4, and 2.2 BB/9? Seems just a little wilder early on this year, but all the other stats are right in light with his normal body of work along with a 2.32 ERA

            • Brocktoon

              Would we be better off with Hairston?

    • Karl Groucho

      It is — although there’s no way any of us can know (or publicly claim to know), of course — highly unlikely that the FO was overly greedy.

      It’s far more likely teams weren’t buying into a few months of good performance by Nate, who put up an HR/FB rate twice his career number in 2013 and up to then was worth 4.5 WAR over ~4 years worth of at bats.

  • Jason B

    Brett,

    My sincere condolences on being forced to listening to Hawk. Nobody should ever have to endure even a minute of listening to that bunghole speak (or pout when the Sox are losing).

    I hope you get a good night sleep, and wake up tomorrow not remembering the traumatic experience you had this evening.

    No, really, that dude is just plain awful.

    Take care,
    Jason

  • another JP

    It’s not ideal but having Shark go 126 pitches isn’t a career ending event. The guy was 8th in the majors with over 3600 pitches thrown in 2013, so he can handle the extra work. As far as Schierholtz goes… I want to have one person tell us what was offered to the FO in return. Anybody know? Unless there’s someone who personally took the calls it’s nothing more than mindless dribble to say Theo/Jed were asking too much. Plus, there’s nothing in Nate’s past to suggest he would struggle this bad. It happens- look what Castro went through last season. But I imagine this same crappie is going to be discussed after every loss this year. WTF….

  • cubsfaninca

    I can’t being to fathom what’s going through Shark’s head at this point. Guy throws 126 pitches, would have had a shutout except for an error, breaks up the no-hitter and scores their only run, and STILL doesn’t have a win. 2nd in ERA in the NL now. He’s got to be thinking, “What more can I do? TRADE ME DAMMIT!”

    • mudge

      I’ll wish him well when he goes. A hell of a dude.

    • blublud

      Wins are pointless, other than the fact it symbolizes that your team won. If Sharks is tired of not getting wins, he tired of his team not winning, not his personal record.

      • http://www.friendly-confines.com hansman

        If only those were two different things.

    • Spriggs

      Probably about the same thing as us….man, do we suck and why the hell is Barney starting!?

  • http://BN Sacko

    I have a question on why happy was pinch hitting position players during a tie game in extras. There were no RISP and Wood ends up pinch hitting for the pitcher.

    • wkranz

      This is a great question. Wonder the same thing. Good thing Valbuena didn’t get on, who would have hit? Baker?

  • Kyle

    Olt broke an 0-for-15 with a single off a righty. That means three more weeks of people getting upset over every game where he doesn’t start.

    • http://www.friendly-confines.com hansman

      Maybe they should have left him in the minors to start the year…

      • Spriggs

        …and end it

    • Head and Heart

      I can never tell if I am upset that Olt isn’t starting or that Barney is.

    • baldtaxguy

      Not me. Olt had another error, a costly one. I’m interested in seeing this “plus defense” that others have gushed over. He should have been charged with two errors, one for the poor throw and one for the poor thought of ignoring a sure out. Maybe some special work on situational defense could also be addressed in Iowa.

      • Chad

        Eh, if Samardzija doesn’t leave two 0-2 pitches right down the middle I’m guessing that inning plays out much differently.

      • Head and Heart

        There’s a difference between a mental mistake and a physical one. Olt made several good plays in that game. In fact the play in the first where he made the error was a pretty nice read to charge and then a good pick of the ball on a bit of a tricky hop. He got himself into position to make a tricky play look routine but then just made a bad decision. One that likely comes from being a young player and trying to do too much.

  • http://BN Sacko

    I’d rather see Olt in the lineup then Barney. Might as well get Olt some more ABs and see what happens. We know by now there is no upside to Barney and keep playing him. Pinch hit him during a lose for the pitcher.

  • Medicos

    Cubs are only averaging 3.7 per game so the 11-19 record isn’t too much of a surprise. Pitching is only surrendering 3.9 runs per game which is huge positive since it will be pitchers HOYSTEIN will ‘flip’ in 2 months.

    Way too many strikeouts:

    Bonifacio——–19%
    Valbuena——–30%
    Rizzo————-18%
    Castro———–14%
    Schierholtz——26%
    Castillo———–27%
    Lake————–44%
    Olt—————–37%

    Baker————–44%
    Kalish—————24%
    Barney————–21%

    Once this lousy, cold, overcast spring weather improves the KO percentages should improve.

    • Thiscantbegood

      Rizzo Castro Bonifacio and Castillo don’t bother me because they are having a solid start to the season.

      Olt and Lake are the two that I only look at because this is basically their first full season in the Majors.

      I agree hopefully once the weather warms up the bats will too. However, I believe Barney’s bat will stay frozen all summer long.

    • Drew7

      Rizzo————-18%
      Castro———–14%

      I think someone needs to take a look at strikeouts league-wide. Those are very solid numbers, especially in Rizzo’s case.

  • Head and Heart

    So what’s the Cubs play with Schierholtz? Are we stuck with watching this train wreck hoping for a hot streak so he has some small amount of trade value? How long can the Cubs continue to trot this guy out there when he is providing negative WAR?

    • baldtaxguy

      As long as there is not a better alternative for RF on the team.

      • Head and Heart

        In terms of position players no one this year has been worse than Schierholtz. Not even Barney or Sweeney. He’s already a -0.8 WAR. There literally isn’t a worse option for RF at this point.

  • Kycubs

    Samardzija has a higher batting average than Barney. Just saying…

    • Thiscantbegood

      Which means if Barney does play he must bat 9th so the pitcher can have the chance to get another AB than Barney.

      Barney should be sent down to AAA and bring up Alcantara. Alteast he would be bearable to watch swing the bat.

      • baldtaxguy

        Barney can’t be sent down to AAA.

        How do you know Alcantara will be “bearable to watch” hitting ML pitching?

        • Thiscantbegood

          So if you had to choose which player you’d like to see play everyday in the Majors you would select Barney instead of a young prospect in Alcantara?

      • gocatsgo2003

        Alcantra needs consistent at-bats, which he wouldn’t get at the MLB level right now.

        • Thiscantbegood

          Yes I know he does. He does need to stay in AAA (at least for now), I was just saying it would be nice to see someone else play 2nd base who may be a future player for the Cubs. Barney will not be that guy down the road.

  • eaustin92

    Hi everyone frequent reader and first time post. It kills me that the Cubs cannot manage to get Shark a win…I really want to get him extended, but I doubt he is going to want to stay with this team, especially if we cant get a solid offense going. I mean I know we have lots of prospects coming up eventually, but is Jeff going to be patient for this team to be competitive? Lets be honest, we are short on pitching right now and I think the most important thing is getting that pitching. Letting Shark get away would be a set back in my opinion.

    • baldtaxguy

      Samardzija wants tor free agent money – he’ll likely not be picky as to the team’s offense that pays him the most. “Letting him get away” is probably not appropriate description.

    • FortyFour

      Shark’s departure seems like it will be a net positive. He will return a number of useful prospects including one or two MLB ready players. I get the sense that he is not well liked by his teammates (Garza syndrome). I guess we will find out once he leaves if players really miss him/dislike him. The biggest thing the Cubs will miss is his ability to go deep into games but I am hopeful there are guys like Hendricks that are capable of going deep as a starter.

      • CubFan Paul

        “(Garza syndrome)”

        I bet Garza’s real advice is take the money, take whatever they offer or you’ll end up in Milwaukee making less money.

        • FortyFour

          Garza syndrome: Bitch about not getting credited with more wins and in the process throw your teammates under the bus. That seems to me to be Shark’s attitude and his “crappy seven or eight year deal” comment could not have helped either.

          I hope that there is a team that both wants him and has the compelling players to offer the Cubs in return. Figuring the Yankees are interested but have little to offer in return.

      • Brocktoon

        Look how much better Garza’s ex-teammates played once they got that cancer out of the clubhouse.

        • Edwin

          And look how poorly his current teammates are playing, now that they have that cancer in their clubhouse.

          • FortyFour

            Garza did not make a difference last season for the Rangers and I think the Brewers are going to flop soon enough, missing the playoffs this year.

  • SenorGato

    Shohei Otani is throwing really well over there in Japan this year, making some huge progress from last year going by his early numbers. I’ve become uncomfortably OK with this rebuild partially on three specific pitchers, none older than 29, all but locked into hitting FA at the end of the decade. Chapman in 2017, Otani and Fujinami right after.

    There’s more to like this year than we think – Castro’s back, Rizzo is really good, Samardzija is even better this year, Bryant’s ridiculous, they’re getting a hold of the bullpen and turning it into a force…I’m not sure I’m into selling Samardzija or anything like that. If anything, try to buy an OFer from someone, preferably with power but someone who can put together starting quality production in CF would be very welcome.

    • Brocktoon

      So you want to bank on a guy who MIGHT get posted 4 years from now, and assume there are no sweeping changes to the posting system, and assume we could actually get him. Uncomfortably OK indeed.

      • SenorGato

        There’s no might about them getting posted, and of course the assumption should be that by the end of the decade the Cubs can land players like this. If they can’t I’ll have long moved onto a franchise with a little more chutzpah and cajones anyway.

        I see this as no different from the prospect worship rampant throughout the fanbase, except this isn’t Ivan Pineyro and Corey Black. They’re huge, TOR ceiling-ed arms. Besides for Chapman these guys just happen to pitch in a different country’s league that probably is at least equal to AA competition in the States.

  • Diehardthefirst

    Doesn’t matter about 126 pitches- his next pitch will be for the Yankees a week from today

  • Diehardthefirst

    The Yanks going to 6 man rotation cause Tanaka showing signs can’t handle pitching more than once week – adding Shark and Hammel works for them

    • gocatsgo2003

      Just… wow.

  • Canadian Cubs Fan

    Ugh. Another offensive no-show. Too many auto outs in this lineup. If Rizzo, Castro and Castillo have quiet nights, there are a lot of zeros on the board.

    Bullpen guys looking pretty good these days – Ramirez, Schlitter, Rondon, Wright. Nice to see!

    Trading Shark is ridiculous, and won’t happen until at least the trade deadline. There aren’t enough suitors lining up right now for the Cubs to get remotely close to what they should. And here’s the other question: can they even get enough to make it justifiable at this point? And is he not the kind of guy they’ll need to overspend to get in free-agency in the offseason? The Cubs already have him, and under team control through next year. Keep him, sign another pitcher and a bat or two, and you might be competitive next year, and extend him.

    • Medicos

      CANADIAN CUBS FAN: Coincidentally with you residing in Canada, the head of scouting for the Blue Jays was at the Friendly Confines last night. BNers had better start checking out the Toronto farm system because it looks like SHARK might headed north of the border very soon.

      • Head and Heart

        I am not looking forward to that scenario if it pans out. I am also Canadian and I hate the Jays. With a passion. I already have to like Dioner which is one Jay too many as far as I am concerned. If they get Shark too I might have to watch a game of there’s once in a while. The horror.

  • Canadian Cubs Fan

    And until pitchers stop caring about wins, they are not a meaningless stat. In fact, when it comes to signing or keeping quality starters, they are the most important stat.

    • eaustin92

      exactly, which is why front office really needs to get an offense for the guy…hes going to get tired of pitching his butt off for nothing..and leave and we will be back to square one, because without pitching you will not win.

      • gocatsgo2003

        When it comes down to it, the only number that matters for signing or re-signing players is the one after the dollar sign.

        • Canadian Cubs Fan

          I agree with you, in most cases. But if all things are equal, including the dollars offers of two teams, which one will the player choose? The one that gives him a better chance to win.

          • gocatsgo2003

            “All else being equal” is amongst the least effective tools of argument because the chances that every single individual variable except for one are precisely the same is minuscule. Specific to the decisions of baseball free agency, the fact that teams play in different ballparks in different cities undercuts “all else being equal” from the get-go.

  • ssckelley

    Vizcaino has been promoted to Tennessee.

  • Dustin S

    Ironic when talking about wins being a relevant stat that in last night’s game Daniel Webb got the “W” for the Sox after getting 1 out and throwing a whopping 6 pitches. Wins won’t go away, but really they are a relic of an older time in baseball prior to bullpens being used the way they are now. They won’t go away because MLB and media relies on them as a talking point for casual fans and they are an easy meter to discuss awards like the Cy Young for casual fans. But doing just a quick count right now, there are 6 pitchers with ERAs over 5.x with at least 3 wins. So it’s pretty tough to argue that they are an accurate metric for pitching performance in today’s game. A good agent might be able to help sell their player or that they have some sort of winning intangibles if they have a big win number. But if teams are relying on wins for how much they pay for signing pitchers, they kind of deserve what they get.

    • Canadian Cubs Fan

      As I said above, I believe wins still matter to the pitchers themselves, which is important, whether we like it or not. I’m pretty sure the guys that throw, hit and field the ball laugh at all the talk about metrics.

      It has been proven pretty well over time that striking out doesn’t help your team win, but hitters are doing it at an alarming rate. If metrics mattered to players, you might see a few more of them choking up on the bat with two strikes to just put the ball in play…

  • Blackhawks1963

    I continue to believe we have seen Samardzija’s last start in a Cub uniform. I think he is traded within a matter of hours personally. Something is up… Just my opinion.

    • gocatsgo2003

      Based on… the voices in your head or something substantive?

    • Chad

      I think you will continue to believe that for at least 6 more weeks. I honestly hope if he is going to get traded (99.99999999%) that it be sooner than later so the tanking can begin and we don’t have to think about injury. Also, how many times prior to last night have you believed it was his last start? You probably said that last October too.

    • Jon

      Kaplan, any updates? Think this trade will be done before 5PM?

  • Beast Mode

    I know, that Brett probably knows why RR left a Shark in the game. It it pretty obvious he was trying to get him the W. I have made this point before and this is a great example. W-L record should not matter, but it does. I am slowly jumping on the bandwagon of throwing this stat out the window.

    • ssckelley

      It does not matter how many people start “jumping on the bandwagon” the W-L stat will never be erased from the pitchers statistics. People can boycot the stat all they want but it will not change the fact the people, even players, enjoy these numbers. Like it or not the W-L stat is part of baseball history and it will always be.

      • Beast Mode

        Maybe instead of flat out nixing the stat they can change the requirements for the Win. It is a useful stat in terms of telling the casual fan how the whole TEAM has played when that pitcher is on the mound. This may be a case where tradition is literally hurting baseball and it’s players.

        • Chad

          It’s not even a good tool in that regard.

          • Beast Mode

            I think it fairly useful is when comparing his more important stats like WHIP and ERA to his W-L record. If a pitcher has around a 2.00 ERA and WHIP just above 1.00 and his record is 0-5. My conclusion would be his team must really hit poorly when he is on the mound. In this case that conclusion would be right.

        • http://fullcount1544.blogspot.com FullCountTommy

          It’s almost like the teams are awarded wins…

          • Head and Heart

            They should have a weighted win loss stat. Wins+. If a pitcher, in this case Shark, pitched for a team with a league average offense and all his starts were in a league average ballpark what would his record be.

            • http://fullcount1544.blogspot.com FullCountTommy

              I’d be ok with a stat like that for us nerds, but I doubt something like that would ever catch on for the casual fan

              • http://www.friendly-confines.com hansman

                Eh, I hope Samardzija, this year, is opening eyes as to why the W/L stat is so terrible.

                The team is 1-6 when he starts.

            • http://www.friendly-confines.com hansman

              It sounds like you are going through a lot of trouble to answer the questions: “How good is pitcher X and should we expect it to continue?”

              While really avoiding answering the questions.

              • Head and Heart

                I’m just spit balling an idea. I haven’t had a second cup of coffee yet so I have no idea if that idea makes any sense or is the stupidest thing I’ve ever said.

            • Chad

              Sounds a lot like WAR.

              • Head and Heart

                Well that’s what I use but I was wondering if putting a stat like that in a win loss record format would appeal to the casual fan.

  • ssckelley

    Am I the only one who thinks Barney should have made that play at 2nd base instead of turning his head and letting the ball get away? If anything come off the bag and block the ball to keep the runner from advancing to third.

    • Chad

      He should have had it, since he is a GG 2b. Worse to me is Shark leaving 2 meatballs down the middle on 0-2 pitches. 2 big mistakes that cost Shark.

      • ssckelley

        I do not disagree with that but pitchers are going to make mistakes and good defenses can cover up those mistakes.

        Little OT but if any of those things don’t happen the Cubs would have had a 1-0 lead heading into the 9th inning. Obviously Shark does not pitch the ninth which begs the question as to who would have gotten the save opportunity? If it was Grimm we might have had the same results anyway, but we will never know.

        • Chad

          I agree, but your ace can’t make 2 of those mistakes in the same inning. Especially to one of the hottest hitters in the game right now, especially if that guy will extend his zone with 2 strikes. Not only were they down the middle, but fastballs. give the guy something to think about.

          • Brocktoon

            So your requirement to be an ace is to make no mistakes. Shark goes 9 innings, allowing 5 baserunners and you’re blaming him.

  • Jon

    It’s just amazing that we are sitting here, having the #2 guy in all of baseball in terms of ERA and the discussion is not about keeping him with an extension but when the FO will trade him. Again speaks to the white flag/losing culture that has FO indirectly promotes

    • Chad

      I want Shark to get extended, but if he doesn’t want to be extended (reasonably) then you can’t do it. If it is the NTC that’s the hold up the FO has said they will not do that and you can’t set a precedent that way. I agree they could probably pony up a little more cash than 5/55 that was reported, but how much more. I would be fine if they went 5/75, but as long as that contract begins next year and only buys out 1 arb year.

      • Jon

        Seems like the #1 priority is not setting a precedent.

      • CubFan Paul

        Theo&Co aren’t going to go from $11MM AAV to $15MM AAV

        At most, I could see Theo&Co giving Samardzija a deal in the $12-$12.5MMish AAV range.

        Anything more is just overpaying for your own asset, making a trade way more likely.

        • http://fullcount1544.blogspot.com FullCountTommy

          The offer was 5/55 which was buying out 2 arbitration years. Assuming 5 for the first arb year and 10 for the second arb year, they were offering him 3/40 for his free agents years (13.33 AAV) which is way too low, even for your own asset.

          At this point I’d be ok with 5/75 starting next year which would be 10 for the arb year and 16.25 for the free agent years.

          • Chad

            beat me to it Tommy, you just used 10 instead of 8. Great minds think alike.

          • CubFan Paul

            “5 for the first arb year and 10 for the second arb year,…3/40 for his free agents years (13.33 AAV)”

            Shark would of made less in the 1st two years (signing bonus &/or back loaded), either way it’s still about total contract AAV not just the ‘free agent years’

            • Chad

              No, it’s really about the FA years because as you stated during the ARB years he is controlled and his salary is relatively solidified. The extension is all about the FA years and the AAV of those years.

              • CubFan Paul

                “and his salary is relatively solidified”

                No it is not. If Shark signs an extension today, his 2015 and 2016 salaries could easily be $3.5MM a year, therefore backloading an estimated $8MM

                • Chad

                  Do you even read. The value of those years is set. Yes they could alter the $ amount he gets paid and spread it however they want, but that would be silly, but if the value of those years whether they extend him or not are the same.

                  • CubFan Paul

                    “Do you even read”

                    And this is why I laid off replying to you for a long while.

            • http://fullcount1544.blogspot.com FullCountTommy

              No it’s not, it’s all about the free agent years. You can’t offer a guy 11 million for his free agent years when he’ll probably get 16-18 million easy on the open market. There’s a big difference between not overpaying your assets and lowballing. At the time, the 5/55 was honestly probably about right, but circumstances change and that’s definitely a low ball now.

          • http://www.friendly-confines.com hansman

            But the dollar amount should also factor in the fact that they were guaranteeing the money 2 years before they had to.

            • CubFan Paul

              *should also factor in the fact that they were guaranteeing the money 2 years before they had to*

            • CubFan Paul

              And when Hans is smart, they ignore him.

              • http://fullcount1544.blogspot.com FullCountTommy

                Ah the backhanded compliment from Paul, would expect nothing less

                • CubFan Paul

                  I don’t think you understood my comment.

                  • http://fullcount1544.blogspot.com FullCountTommy

                    I understand the comment and the English language. Your inference (whether it was accidental or not) was that Hans rarely says something smart, and when he actually does, we ignore him. Whether this was on purpose or not, I’m not positive, but that’s what your statement means to anyone with a firm grasp of the English language.

                    • CubFan Paul

                      “was that Hans rarely says something smart”

                      Hans is also a comedian. He purposely posts funny &/or not smart things.

                      My inference was: Hans took the time to be serious and post something smart to be a part of the conversation, but was ignored by you & Chad, because replying to his comment would of ruined your narrative.

                    • http://fullcount1544.blogspot.com FullCountTommy

                      Thank you for clearing that up, and I didn’t respond to hans because you had addressed the same concern and I replied to yours, that’s all.

          • Brocktoon

            1. Final year arbitration awards are determined by comparing to FA prices.
            2. Those FA years are still too cheap.

        • Chad

          I disagree with you. You have to look at it from the cost of the FA years. If he would have signed the 5/55 this past off season and you assume 8 million for next year’s arb year (thought it will be higher if he keeps pitching like this) then essentially the cubs would have given him a 3/42 extension. Or $14 million/ FA year and only get 3 extra years of Shark. If they give him a 5/75 and only buy out one arb year ($8 million) they essentially get a 4th year of FA on what is essentially a 4/67 of 16.75/ FA year. Now is that really that bad for locking up a guy that is showing ace potential right now, getting an extra year from him at what is a rather reasonable price? I don’t think so.

        • Chad

          Also you say overpaying for your own asset. He’s only the cubs asset for a little less than two seasons and you are paying for the following 3 or 4 years in which you do not have control and he is not your asset.

          • CubFan Paul

            “Also you say overpaying for your own asset.”

            Meaning: he’s only worth X amount of dollars to the Cubs (Matt Harrison-John Danks money)

            Anything more, because of service time & comparable arb-extensions is overpaying.

            • Chad

              Except he is pitching better than Harrison or Danks right now and has shown he is continuing to improve. Also the SP market has changed a great deal in the last 2 years so it’s less comparable. It still is not over paying at lets say 16.75 for FA years of a TOR arm. He’s even more comparable to say Sanchez two years ago and is out pitching him.

              • CubFan Paul

                “16.75 for FA years of a TOR arm. He’s even more comparable to say Sanchez two years ago and is out pitching him.”

                smh…I’ve got nothing

                • Chad

                  Why? Sanchez got $16/year open market FA. Shark is out pitching him right now? Shark should expect to get at least $16 million/ FA year. You have to look at the value of the FA years separate from the arbitration years. If you could tell me you could get a guy that pitches like Shark for 5/75 on the FA market right now I’d be pretty excited. Look at what Homer Bailey got this year.

                  • CubFan Paul

                    “Why? Sanchez got $16/year open market FA”

                    Shark is not a free agent.

                    “Shark should expect to get at least $16 million/ FA year.”

                    That is not how arbitration extension work when service time is left (Homer Bailey had less, therefore more leverage).

                    • Chad

                      Depends when the deal gets signed and the language they put into the contract (as you know).

        • Jon

          12-12.5 million is laughable

          • CubFan Paul

            Not when you have 2yrs of service time left.

            • Chad

              If he were extended I would assume they would make the start of that contract next year so only 1 year gets bought out, which is going to cost the cubs about $10 million if they do nothing.

              • CubFan Paul

                “I would assume”

                Don’t.

                Because its common to see the current arbitration year’s salary torn up and replaced with a new number and becoming Year 1 of the new deal (because of signing bonuses &/or backloading purposes.).

                • Chad

                  I know they can, but in my mind doing it that way is the best for Shark (gets his money and guaranteed years in Chicago) and cubs get the most return in years for their investment. This is how I expect that the cubs would see it playing out for their best interests.

                  • CubFan Paul

                    “I know they can, but in my mind…This is how I expect that the cubs would see it playing out for their best interests.”

                    Let’s keep it realistic

                    • Chad

                      It’s as realistic as 5/55

                    • http://fullcount1544.blogspot.com FullCountTommy

                      To me it’s simple. 5/55 was a decent offer when they offered it (buying out 2 arb years). 5/55 is no longer a decent offer as it would only be buying out 1 arb year.

                    • CubFan Paul

                      “5/55 is no longer a decent offer as it would only be buying out 1 arb year.”

                      …A new contract can buy out 2014 also (as pointed out above)

                    • http://fullcount1544.blogspot.com FullCountTommy

                      Yes it can, but I highly doubt Shark is open to that at this point unless it gives him a HUGE raise, so that point is moot. If his main goal is winning like he says, he wouldn’t want it to start in 2014, as that would give him an extra year with the rebuilding Cubs instead of the possibly competing Cubs.

                    • CubFan Paul

                      “ut I highly doubt Shark is open to that at this point unless it gives him a HUGE raise”

                      OR A SIGNING BONUS… “hey jeff, sign today and Ricketts will walk down here and give you a $15MM bonus, lower this year’s salary to $2MM, pay you $7MM in 2015, so we keep payroll flexibility, then we pay you $12MM AAV for your 1st 3 free agent years, with a couple $18MM Club/Vesting options tacked on the end”

                      2014 $17MM
                      2015 $7MM
                      2016 $12MM
                      2017 $12MM
                      2018 $12MM = 5/$60MM
                      2019 $18MM
                      2020 $18MM = 7/$96MM

                      A very reasonable and generous arb-extension.

                    • http://fullcount1544.blogspot.com FullCountTommy

                      Those two $18 million dollar options are a big thing you haven’t discussed yet. That is a much more reasonable offer than simply 5 for 55.

                    • CubFan Paul

                      “Those two $18 million dollar options are a big thing you haven’t discussed yet.”

                      But do you see my point?

                    • Brocktoon

                      What? No, Options at the end of the contract that the club controls does not add to the value of the contract, especially not when they’re at the market rate for Shark TODAY. Add in the hilarious underpay, and this is why Samardzija won’t be a Cub in August.

                    • CubFan Paul

                      “Add in the hilarious underpay, and this is why Samardzija won’t be a Cub in August.”

                      Yes Theo&Co know what they’re doing.

  • ClevelandCubsFan

    On the 127 pitches, can anyone help me out? It sure looks like from the GameDay information that Shark was throwing a lot of good pitches that went for balls in the 9th. Quite possibly he could have been out of there with 10+ fewer pitches with a little love from the umpire. Am I wrong?

    As for the decision, right or wrong, I’m guessing like everyone else, Shark wants to finish what he starts. He’s capable, and he was dominating last night.Who knows? Maybe Shark has been privately very frustrated with the losing, and R.R. wanted to give him a chance to carry his team to the victory. All speculation, but whatever.

    On the number, is 126 really that bad for a nearly 30 starter with a low-mileage arm who is built like, well, a football player and has no serious injury history? That’s an honest question. I know that in the aggregate, high pitch counts correlate with injury and decreased effectiveness. But these things are more complicated that simply previous pitch count. Do we have any stats on how Shark has performed after such starts?

    • Beast Mode

      I’m sure I am biased a bit, but it seems we were getting squeezed a bit and the Sox were getting everything close. I don’t know if framing is the culprit or if the Umps want me to have an aneurism.

    • CubFan Paul

      “Shark was throwing a lot of good pitches that went for balls in the 9th”

      Welly was more worried about the base-runners, popping up as he received the pitches to control the run-game.

      “Quite possibly he could have been out of there with 10+ fewer pitches”

      Definitely and always the case…

  • newsguy23

    Schierholtz and Barney equal sucky. This team will never gain much momentum because they have too many crappy players.

  • Pepitones wig

    I just can’t see how people think Castillo is so good defensively after watching that passed ball last night..smh

    • http://fullcount1544.blogspot.com FullCountTommy

      You realize he was crossed up right?? You try to catch a 95 mph fastball that has a foot of tail when you’re expecting an 87 mph slider with a foot of break the other direction

      • Pepitones wig

        look, I get that. Isn’t that part of the deal? Communication with the piture is a part of the overall makeup. We’ll see how much it happens this year..

        • TWC

          “piture”?

          Yikes.

          • Pepitones wig

            agreed

        • http://fullcount1544.blogspot.com FullCountTommy

          I’m not sure if Castillo put the wrong sign down or if Shark just saw the sign wrong, but if it’s the latter, there is no way you can put any shred of blame on Castillo. Fact is he was the best or at the top of the list in many defensive stats last year including runs saved and blocking pitches (Pitch framing is still a huge negative though).

          • Pepitones wig

            “there is no way you can put any shred of blame on Castillo”

            Huh? If Castillo was looking for a different pitch then he put down, then it clearly could have been his fault

            I just don’t see Yadier Molina get crossed up as often as this guy, and he certainly catches guys with stuff as good as Shark’s

            The stolen base percentage is horrible as well, but I guess that’s all the pitchers fault too. :)

            • http://fullcount1544.blogspot.com FullCountTommy

              Read the comment, I said if Shark saw the sign wrong, then you can’t put any blame on Castillo.

              And yes, stolen base % is largely on the pitcher, if your pitcher is 1.6 to the plate, you have no chance of throwing a guy out.

              He has been a bit iffy on throwing out runners this year, but his rSB last year was tied for 2nd in the MLB, ahead of Molina, tied with Salvador Perez, and only behind Russell Martin.

              • Pepitones wig

                yep sorry..passed over the first part there..my fault

        • ced landrum

          Communication is important, but if the pitcher misses a sign then is it really the catchers fault?

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