Javy Baez's Bat, the Cubs Bullpen's Brilliance, and Other Bullets

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Javy Baez’s Bat, the Cubs Bullpen’s Brilliance, and Other Bullets

Chicago Cubs

Our fantasy baseball partner DraftKings is holding a one-day contest exclusively for BN readers based on tonight’s games. It’s free, it’s fun, and there are prizes (DK cash and shirts/hats). Sign up here. More details here. I’m still tinkering with my lineup, but I’m tempted to commit a grievous sin and choose Brewers starter Brent Suter as one of my pitchers. I figure, if he pitches well, at least he can help me win. If he gets crushed, well, then I won’t care because it’ll mean the Cubs did well …

  • Joe Maddon says the goal is to get Javy Baez to slow his mind down at the plate (670 The Score): “Just as he slows his mind down on defense, we’re trying to get him to slow his mind down at the plate. Probably the best way I can describe it, because on defense he’s a maestro. I don’t even know who’s better than he is. His mind works at a great speed there. At the plate, it speeds up too much, and we’re trying to get that under control.” Without trying to psychoanalyze from the outside, it does sometimes seem like Baez gets ahead of himself at the plate, determining to swing long before a pitch is on its way. The physical talent is there, and he has a perfectly good swing, but the pitch-recognition skills have always been what needed the most work.
  • The Cubs’ bullpen currently sports a 0.69 ERA after five games of brilliant work, largely in service of keeping the Cubs in games when the vaunted starting rotation wasn’t quite at its best. That also meant an especially heavy workload right out of the gate. Fortunately, with the rainout and off-day, everyone should be rested up – even Eddie Butler, who pitched like a starter in relief on Saturday, has now had four days rest.
  • The Cardinals are making a change:

  • Wainwright had been slowed by injury, and Flaherty looked incredible in his start … so naturally, the Cardinals are sending him back to the minors.
  • A lotta talk about Bryce Harper lately (in large part because of the Braves trolling him by way of using ‘Go Cubs Go’ on the organ), and I was asked again about how exactly him coming to the Cubs could even work. So, I’ll reiterate, it’s a “worry about it later” situation. If a 26-year-old generational talent expresses sincere interest in coming to the Cubs, you have to feel that out. You have to see what’s possible, in terms of a contract. And if he really wants to come, then you figure it out, and work out the roster/positional details later.
  • Boooo … there are currently no plans for a new Bryzzo Souvenir Company commercial.
  • The minor league seasons get underway today!
  • Good stuff from the sister site:

Author: Brett Taylor

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