Cubs Thumped the Ball, NL Central's Strength, Old Friends Square Off, and Other Bullets

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Cubs Thumped the Ball, NL Central’s Strength, Old Friends Square Off, and Other Bullets

Chicago Cubs News

I was up until 1 am my time last night doing post-game Cubs/Bears stuff, and I feel like sheeeeeeeeeeeet this morning, but to have both of them win big games on the same night? I will so take it.

  • Speaking of the Cubs’ win, although I joked in the EBS about their OFFENSIVE EXPLOSION of five runs, they really did hit the ball very well last night. When considering how rough the offense has been lately – and deserved, because of the terrible quality of contact – this was so nice to see:

  • For the game, a whopping 50 PERCENT of the Cubs’ batted balls classified as hard hit, and just 15.4% were soft hit. Both figures are fantastic, and show a lineup that was seeing the ball very well in that particular game.
(Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images)
  • Something something Willson Contreras has been hitting the ball really hard lately something something not gonna jinx it something but he also has gotten a lot of rest lately something something so maybe it’s real something but I’m definitely not jinxing it something.
  • Speaking of hitting for power:

  • Given Russell’s age, I would never say I have a problem with an organization (or the player, himself) trying to make a guy a more complete hitter. But, like I said, for some guys, their power will just naturally be to the pull side – that’s the case for lots of really, really good hitters. I’ll never forget the most extreme example: Jose Bautista went from fringe lifer to superstar in his age 30 season because he started pulling the crap out of the ball (from 35.9% in 2009 to 51.2% in 2010). That’s where the power was for him. Don’t fight it. Embrace it.
  • Just two more days left in the Cubs’ stretch of 30 straight days with a scheduled game, and here’s how Theo Epstein sums it up (Cubs.com): “You don’t get a do-over. We’re going to play a quarter of our season with one off-day. It will be something nice to overcome.” That’s a good point, too – the Cubs get an off-day on Thursday, but then they finish out the season with 10 more games straight. So it’s one off-day for 40 games.
  • Check this out: the NL Central is the only division in baseball with four teams having winning records. The two teams that the top have the best two records in the NL. Moreover, the last place Reds have a better record than all other last place teams but one. At this point in the year, a division has shown you what it is: the NL Central was a very, very strong division this year.
  • This is Daniel Vogelbach hitting a grand slam off of Hector Rondon and I feel weird:

  • In case you were wondering, Vogelbach is hitting .222/.341/.417 (117 wRC+) over 29 games for the Mariners this year. Rondon has a 3.02 ERA over 56.2 innings.
  • I am extremely here for this throwback:

  • Happy birthday, Ryno:


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Author: Brett Taylor

Brett Taylor is the Editor and Lead Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at @BleacherNation and @Brett_A_Taylor.