Chicago Cubs 2016 NL Central Championship Gear

jake arrieta beard featureThe latest Amazon purchase: a three-meal sample of Soylent, which, yes, is a nod to Soylent Green. It’s basically a powder that you mix with water and it’s designed to be everything you would otherwise get from a healthy meal. I know, I know. But I just want to try it and see how it tastes/how I feel/how easy it is/etc. I don’t anticipate actually using it to completely replace food, but I will experiment with seeing if it can replace one meal or maybe snacks. I’m in a very experimental phase in my life. That … sounds different than I meant it.

And a reminder that if you do shop at Amazon for futuristic food replacements or anything else, you should do so through the links here at BN, because you’ll be supporting BN in the process. And I’ll thank you. I might even share a sip of my Soylent with you. You can bookmark that link, or use the link that’s always there at the top of the page.

  • The upside of Jake Arrieta’s dominance yesterday was that he earned a complete game shutout, an increasingly rare occurrence, and a nice feather in the cap. The theoretical downside is the 122 pitches it took, which was a career high. From where I sit, I pretty much never like to see a pitcher go over 115 pitches, which is a somewhat arbitrary (but often instructive) line. That goes double in blowouts, where stretching a pitcher is simply unnecessary. That said, when the outing has been low-stress, and especially the later pitches are low-stress, I’m a little more flexible in my thinking.

  • And that’s what it was for Joe Maddon, who said that Arrieta was on a short leash at the end, but the stuff still looked good, and Arrieta hadn’t been laboring through high-stress situations (CSN). Arrieta, himself, also felt like he was getting better as the game went on (ESPN). It’s very unlikely that we would see ill-effects from this game for Arrieta, and I’m not terribly concerned.
  • But I am impressed – Arrieta’s game score for the outing was 86, tied for the 16th best by a starting pitcher in any start this season (and best by a Cubs pitcher). Over nine shutout innings, Arrieta struck out seven, allowed just four hits, and walked no one. The outing dropped his FIP to 2.90, 14th best in baseball.
  • The Cubs aren’t scared of their upcoming tough stretch (it’s actually a tough stretch within a tough stretch), and they’re content to be playing good teams (Tribune). I say, if the Cubs could win four of these seven games against the Dodgers and Cardinals – preferably at least two coming against the Cardinals – I will be very, very happy.

  • Joe Maddon with praise for Chris Coghlan, who – dead horse alert – has hit the ball much better all year than the baseball card numbers say (CSN).
  • Maddon is also campaigning for Anthony Rizzo as an All-Star, deservedly so.
  • If you missed anything from the weekend, your catch-up is here.
  • I respect how he thinks for a moment and decides to just keep going:

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