Taylor Family Basement Flooding Fiasco of 2015 update: the damage, as is often the case in these situations, was more extensive than initially anticipated. So not only is all of the carpet gone, but so are the baseboards and a good chunk of the drywall. We are currently working with the insurance adjuster and the remediation company, where nobody’s incentives are quite aligned with our own or with each other. Fun stuff!
- Joe Maddon and Justin Grimm discuss the bullpen move that didn’t work out last night (Cubs.com). I don’t really have a ton to add. Grimm has been fantastic, and Clayton Richard had been hit very hard by Todd Frazier already. I felt then, and still feel now, like it was the right move. Grimm simply couldn’t get Frazier, and then missed his spot badly to Jay Bruce. It’s not like it was an avalanche of awfulness. Sometimes it doesn’t take much to lose a game of baseball.
- If you’ve been wondering what injury had kept Dan Vogelbach out for the last few weeks, it’s an oblique strain. Cubs farm director Jaron Madison told Tommy Birch that the hope is that Vogelbach can be back to AA Tennessee in early August. Most injuries are “bad timing” because, by their nature, they tend to happen during seasons and season are important. But this injury was particularly ill-timed for the Cubs and Vogelbach, who has the potential to be a big league hitter in the very near future, particularly if he were moved to a team with a long-term first base or DH opening. Vogelbach, 22, is eligible for the Rule 5 Draft after this season, so, if the Cubs keep him, he’ll have to be placed on the 40-man roster, even though there likely won’t be a spot for him on the big league team without an injury ahead of him. All of that, plus the Cubs as probable buyers this month, made Vogelbach a fairly plausible trade asset in the coming days. To be sure, an injury like that does not absolutely preclude Vogelbach from being traded. But if you’re in the shoes of the other team, wouldn’t you want to feel very comfortable that a guy who is primarily a hitter isn’t going to be affected for any significant stretch of time (developmentally or otherwise) by the injury? In other words, there’s almost certainly at least some impact here. (Yes, trades can be made in August via the waiver system, but, for reasons to lengthy to get into here, you can’t count on it.)
- The injury, by the way, was also bum timing for Vogelbach because it precluded him from playing for the US Team in the Pan American Games.
- Joe Maddon described Rafael Soriano’s debut as “a little rusty” (Cubs.com). Here’s hoping that’s all it was, because it was about as discouraging as a single outing that doesn’t involve any runs can be. The velocity wasn’t there, the location didn’t seem to be there, and the bite on his breaking pitches didn’t seem to be there. As I said, though: it’s just one outing, and it was his first in the big leagues in a very long time. I’m open to it being nothing more than a blip.
- (Neil Ramirez, on the other hand … it’s not a blip at this point. I’m fairly concerned about what I’ve seen since he returned from the disabled list (velocity/command/spin), and I have only the faintest hope that he’ll be able to keep improving as the year goes on. It might wind up taking an offseason reset to get him back to where he was last year.)
- Kyle Schwarber is trying to stay with the Cubs from here on out (CSN).
- The Cubs’ Twitter account is still on fire, statistically speaking.
- This actually made me feel much better about last night’s loss in a backwards kind of way:
#Cubs allow 3 HR in a game for first time since May 29
They had allowed just 4 HR in previous 18 games.
— Christopher Kamka (@ckamka) July 21, 2015
- But then this made me feel worse again, in a completely forwards kind of way:
In the last 30 days, the Cubs' offense is 27th in runs, 29th in OPS and dead last in home runs.
— FuzzBeed Eli (@EliGieryna) July 21, 2015
- And then something fun again to not end on a sour note. There’s no relationship to this morning’s Tigers/Price rumor, but this is fun anyway: