The Taylor Family air conditioner crapped out this week, and I fear that the sump pump is suffering the same fate. It’s been awfully rainy and I haven’t heard it kick on in a while. I wish I were more handy, because I frequently find that I don’t even know what I don’t know.
- So, the Cubs have been pretty terrible following off-days this year. The sample is still too small to mean anything, but in 11 games following an off-day, a rainout, or the off-day before Opening Day, the Cubs are just 4-7. Moreover, even in the four wins, the Cubs have scored a total of 10 runs, a full half of those coming in one game against the Reds. Let’s not go too far with any of that, of course, because, again, we’re talking about only 11 games. It’s just an oddity that sticks out when the Cubs are 30-17 in all of their other games.
- Jake Arrieta gave up six walks last night for the first time since his final big league start back in 2011 on July 31. It was clear that Arrieta was off, but was he also getting squeezed? Well, here’s Arrieta’s chart from last night:
- I count five strikes that were called balls and four balls that were called strikes. In an era of the ever-expanding strike zone, that’s a pretty rough night. Does that account for Arrieta’s struggles? I’m not making that claim. I will point out that Trevor Bauer had just two strikes called balls, and three balls called as strikes.
- For his part, Arrieta wasn’t going to blame the calls (though he conceded that he had a beef with some of them, per ESPN). The good news is that he didn’t feel like anything was too terribly off – just didn’t make some pitches, gave up some walks, etc. As I said last night, Arrieta’s been so good for so long now that a start like this doesn’t really concern me. It’s just a bad outing, which figures to be a rare occurrence for him.
- No real word on Zac Rosscup just yet, with Joe Maddon saying after the game that the lefty felt stiffness in his shoulder and couldn’t get loose (ESPN). That could be nothing, or it could be an actual shoulder injury. You can figure the Cubs will have him looked at further today, and will probably want to know whether he’s going to hit the DL before tonight’s game begins so that they can bring in a fresh arm.
- It sounds like Keith Law likes the Cubs’ draft, seeing Ian Happ and Donnie Dewees as two of the best college hitters in the draft, with Happ being a better athlete than some have indicated.
- If you missed Michael’s look at an interesting Cubs’ strikeout pro, don’t.