‘Game of Thrones’ comment coming, so if you’re a viewer and you haven’t watched last night’s episode yet, skip this …
Although I was pleased to see a certain character return last night because I think he was always enjoyable to watch, I didn’t love it overall. I like the way he left the show – the ambiguity of it, the cruelty of it. That felt more to the spirit of his story line and the show than what I suspect is now coming.
- Kyle Schwarber was interviewed on The Score this weekend about his rehabilitation from knee surgery to repair a torn ACL and LCL. The good news is that Schwarber is walking now and continues to be a presence in the Cubs’ clubhouse and dugout. He says everything is going as expected. Being less than two months out from surgery, though, means that there’s still a long road ahead, and Schwarber knows it. It has to be beneficial to both him and the team that he’s around so much, and a lot of that is a credit to the Cubs’ new training and medical facilities at Wrigley Field. Schwarber will continue his work, with an eye toward a return in Spring Training next year.
- We’ll have more on Jake Arrieta’s weird start a little later, but it’s worth noting that Joe Maddon and Miguel Montero agreed that his stuff was excellent yesterday (Cubs.com). You’re just not going to have too many .900 BABIP days against you, and, when you do, even the best pitcher might lose. I tend to think – OK, I know – Arrieta is uniquely good at limiting hard contact, and thus he’s always going to have a lower BABIP than most pitchers. But the .213 he was at coming into yesterday’s start was probably a little artificially low. Thus, yesterday, regression hit in a big and expected way. After the game, Arrieta’s BABIP had risen all the way to .249 – almost exactly in line with where he was last year (.246).
- No Sammy hop on Javy Baez’s homer yesterday, but I’m thinking it was because it went the other way and the solidness of the contact seemed to take Baez by surprise. He was ready to run. Fingers crossed that it’s still in the toolbox.
- This will deserve even more attention in the coming days, especially as the draft looms on Thursday, but there’s a fantastic interview at BP with Cubs Senior VP of Player Development and Amateur Scouting Jason McLeod.
- Welington Castillo offers praise at CSN for Willson Contreras, who is the up-and-coming offense-first catching prospect with the Cubs that Castillo was several years ago. Castillo sees increasing maturity in Contreras, about whom the finishing touches seem to be the receiving/game-planning/working with a staff stuff. Contreras’s bat, at least in the upper minors, is already far superior to Castillo’s (who has been excellent offensively in the big leagues), so the ability to catch effectively is the only thing standing between Contreras and perhaps an even more successful big league career than Castillo. (Also: their initials are both W.C. Also: the missing “L” in the expected spelling of Welington’s first name landed in the unexpected spelling of Willson’s first name.)
- Big sale today on a bunch of baseball cards (and other sports cards) at Amazon.
- The theme for the Cubs’ just-underway road trip included these nickname-adorned track suits:
— John Mallee (@JohnMallee) June 5, 2016