HI THERE: What follows below was my original attempt to write up the Ian Happ solo homer (the first one) at the outset of a 9-1 ball game. While I was writing that one up, Kris Bryant hit one and I tried to include that too. After that, however, the Cubs hit precisely one bajillion home runs and more info on all of those will follow. For now, enjoy what life looked like about 20 min ago:
Alright. I know. This isn’t very fun.
After digging the Cubs into a NINE to NOTHING hole, Jon Lester departed the game (with the trainer) after just 1.2 innings pitched and seven earned runs. In all likelihood, the Cubs are going to lose this game (their win expectancy dipped down to 1.5% at one point) and split the four-game series with the Reds.
But hey, that doesn’t mean it’s time to give up. The Cubs have scored plenty of runs this series and this season and there’s a WHOLE lot of baseball left to be played (look what happened yesterday).
Or, just ask Ian Happ, who, in the second inning, sent his 16th home run of the season to the left field bleachers (an opposite field blast):
You can watch it here on MLB.com, or right here:
— TheRenderMLB (@TheRenderMLB_) August 17, 2017
As I mentioned, that homer was Happ’s 16th of the season – and in just 287 plate appearances! That’s about a 33-34 homer pace of the course of a full year! The homer also pushed his slash line up to .246/.319/.500 this season, good for a 110 wRC+. Happ has gone through a bit of a struggle here in the second half of the season, after dominating early in the season, but perhaps he’ll soon turn it around.
According to Statcast, that ball left the bat at 101 MPH and traveled 378 feet. That’s not a monster shot, by any means, but if it leaves the park it leaves the park.
And hey, look at that, before I was able to click publish on this post, Kris Bryant sent a solo shot out to left field, as well!
— Cubs Talk (@CSNCubs) August 17, 2017
That homer was Bryant’s 23rd of the season, keeping him in second place on the Cubs, behind only Anthony Rizzo (28).
It also bumped Bryant’s slash line up to .292/.404/.539 this season, which is good for a .397 wOBA and a 145 wRC+. In his MVP 2016 campaign, Bryant finished with a .396 wOBA and a 149 wRC+. That’s a consistent ball player right there.
According to Statcast, Bryant’s homer left the bat at 110 MPH (scorcher!), but traveled only 386 feet thanks to a ridiculous 42 degree launch angle and 151 height.
We’ll have the rest of the madness as soon as we can, but I wanted to get these ones in front of you ASAP.