Chatwood's Continued Struggles, Baez's Mass Appeal, Rosario is GOAT, and Other Bullets

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Chatwood’s Continued Struggles, Baez’s Mass Appeal, Rosario is GOAT, and Other Bullets

Chicago Cubs

I’m on my way home today, writing from the road, and trying to hustle so that I can tag out The Wife. I’m getting back from a trip and she’s leaving on one more or less as soon as I walk in the door. Type type type type …

  • If Javy Baez had pulled off a back-flipping-glove toss yesterday, Tyler Chatwood’s results might’ve looked a lot different. But, that’s not how this works, and Chatwood’s pervasive struggles – including consecutive run-scoring wild pitches in the first inning – have made it very difficult to provide a lot of benefit-of-the-doubting when we look at his starts the next day. He wants to be better. Joe Maddon talks about how he’s trying and how the Cubs will keep working with him on the mechanics (Daily Herald). But there’s only so much you can say at this point until he starts consistently finding the strike zone, and avoiding barrels when he does.
  • Relatedly, you know it’s been really tough when walks aren’t the big story in a poor Chatwood outing … and he still walked four in 5.2 innings, and had a 13.3% BB rate for the start (well above league average).
  • In the meantime, after throwing a whopping 120 pitches yesterday, I do wonder if the Cubs will give Chatwood an extra-long breather before his next start. The Cubs’ next off-day happens to fall on what would be normal rest for Chatwood, so the Cubs could skip his final turn in the rotation before the All-Star break without impacting anyone else’s schedule. At this point, that’s probably well-advised. And then you just hope for something to turn around in the second half.
(Photo by Jon Durr/Getty Images)
  • Jason Heyward left yesterday’s game after taking a foul ball to the groin, but he’s back in the lineup today, so I suppose that means it was more on the “painful” side, rather than the “damaging” side.
  • Joe Maddon to on Javy Baez is just perfect: “How could you not have him on the All-Star team? How could you not want him on the All-Star team? That’s what we’re attempting to showcase Major League Baseball-wise to draw young fans into the game are players like Javy. He has mass appeal. People want to see Javy at this game. They see him in the World Baseball Classic and he’s very popular there. I have to believe, I want to believe, he’ll get on that team somehow. You can look at numbers all you want, but that’s what people want to see, they want to see Baez play baseball.”
  • Maddon also had some love for the fans, and I can attest that Wrigley has been packed this weekend:

  • What a day for Randy Rosario:

  • The peripherals still suggest that his 1.50 ERA is in for some steep regression, but for now, dude is getting outs and contributing to wins. If he didn’t hold the line yesterday – or drive in a run with a single! – the Cubs probably don’t win that game.
  • David Bote, who had a key hit in that 8th inning comeback, may not be long for the roster with Kris Bryant headed out for a rehab assignment, but if he has to head back to Iowa for a while, he’ll head back knowing that – so far – he can hold his own as a utility man in the big leagues. Not only has he played solid defense out there, he’s hit .273/.366/.424 with a 106 wRC+.
  • Outdoor game equipment, ratchet belts, and tumbler sets are among your excellent Deals of the Day today at Amazon.

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.