Not everything was perfect yesterday, but Ian Happ and Jose Quintana sure had incredible days.
Pitching in Game Two of the doubleheader, with his back against the wall of a nearly unusable, burned out bullpen, Quintana dominated the Reds for seven innings:
Q gave us just what we needed! pic.twitter.com/JtSnOydmgO
— Chicago Cubs (@Cubs) May 20, 2018
Over his seven scoreless innings, Quintana allowed just one hit and four walks, and he struck out seven. He registered eight whiffs, and posted his second best game score of the year, behind only his brilliant start against the Brewers at Wrigley Field at the end of April.
He also dropped his ERA to 4.47 from 5.23. Don’t get too stoked – it’s still 13% worse than league average – but it certainly is what you want to see in his starts against any team except the Braves, apparently.
On a very encouraging note, Quintana also sat near 93 mph with his fastball, and touched 94 quite a bit. Maybe a little bit of the velocity is gonna come back?
Between the two games, Ian Happ went 4-7 with three walks, a double, a triple, and two home runs:
— Chicago Cubs (@Cubs) May 19, 2018
— MLB (@MLB) May 20, 2018
If you add in the day before, Happ raised his slash line from .233/.301/.417 (96 wRC+) to .259/.352/.518 (129 wRC+). My God.
Happ is now the third most productive hitter on the Cubs, behind only Kris Bryant (172 wRC+) and Willson Contreras (131). He could pass Contreras today, and stand as the “second best” bat on the Cubs. How in the world has that happened? Good for him.