I’m headed back home this morning – as in I’ll long have been on the road before you read this – but you probably won’t notice too much of a difference around here, as there will still be plenty for you to read as the morning goes along. And, by lunch-time, I’ll be back home, and can return to obsessing about every little Wrigley Field renovation detail. Speaking of which …
- The Sun-Times got some react quotes from various neighborhood groups that weren’t too happy with the renovation plan in the first place, and, surprise, they’re none too happy about the revised plan. I wouldn’t have expected otherwise, and it doesn’t add much new information into our already deep repository of Wrigley-related opinions. That said, I do think it’s pretty disingenuous for these folks in the neighborhood to castigate the Cubs for “not doing anything” after the City approved a compromised renovation plan, including two outfield signs, when everyone knows that the reason the Cubs haven’t yet done anything is because the rooftops were lording the threat of a lawsuit over the Cubs for the better part of a year. And now these groups are chiding the Cubs for “wanting more”? Why should the Cubs be held to a compromised plan that was premised on the team coming to an agreement with the very rooftops that were going to sue them if they actually implemented that compromised plan? Those particular criticisms are pretty ridiculous. The groups lobbing them were opposed to the compromised plan, too. If they wanted to be intellectually honest, they’d simply say, “We were opposed to the compromised plan, so obviously we’re opposed to this.” End of criticism.
- Jeff Sullivan takes a very deep dive into the many ways Jeff Samardzija has reinvented himself as a starting pitcher this year. We’ve touched on most of the items, but Sullivan’s dive is super deep, super interesting, and definitely picks up on some things that I hadn’t – for example, Samardzija has moved down the rubber nearly a foot toward third base, and his arm slot is slightly lower. Sullivan postulates that maybe that’s why his splitter has been a little less effective for him this year (so he uses it less), even as every other pitch is working better for Samardzija (better angle, and more down in the zone). Cerebral stuff, man, and a really great statistical read about a topic with which you’ll be able to relate from watching the games.
- Cubs Farm Director Jaron Madison says that top pitching prospect C.J. Edwards (shoulder) is likely to be out until around the All-Star break, as the Cubs take it extremely slow with the young man. (CSN) It’s a little unclear whether that means the Southern League All-Star break (mid-June) or the Major League All-Star break (mid-July). Obviously that’s a pretty significant difference there, but, based on the original time line for his recovery and things his manager recently said, I tend to think it’s probably the former, not the latter. We’ll probably know soon enough, anyway, because if he’s coming back to AA by mid-June, he’ll be throwing in Arizona soon. One positive comment from Madison was that the injury was something Edwards “probably could have fought through and continued to go,” which was what Edwards wanted to do. But the Cubs shut him down to play it safe.
- Kyle Hendricks (currently getting over a minor ankle thing) lands atop FanGraphs’ fringe five prospect list this week.
- When speaking of the player facilities at Wrigley Field, former Cub Andrew Cashner told the Tribune that Wrigley is “a dump.” Can you blame him?
- Kris Bryant is hitting .335/.431/.623 with 12 homers in his last 45 games at AA.