Another Season High for the Cubs, Grinding At Bats, and Other Bullets

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Another Season High for the Cubs, Grinding At Bats, and Other Bullets

Chicago Cubs

I did not win yesterday’s go kart racing, but I finished in second – by 0.2 seconds on our best laps – to a guy who actually races cars from time to time. I feel pretty good about that outcome.

Physically, however, I do not feel so good. In one of the races, I got spun out and t-boned, which, it turns out, really hurts even in a go kart race. It knocked me around pretty good, so I’ve got nice bruises working on my thigh and foot, and some neck soreness. But, again, I came in second overall to a guy who races, so it was clearly worth it.

  • With their fourth straight win yesterday, the Cubs hit a new high water mark at 22 games over .500. Better than that, the Cubs’ .586 winning percentage is nearly as good as the .597 mark they hit after the first game of the second half, when they went through that long period of struggle. Pretty awesome to think about it that way, yes? Also pretty awesome: a .586 winning percentage is a 95-win pace. That’s three more games than the Cubs won last year.
  • Things are looking good at the moment:

  • Daniel Murphy had just one hit yesterday atop the Cubs’ lineup, but that one hit was a three-run homer – a reminder that having him bat leadoff is fine, but it seems extra savvy to have a position player bat 9th ahead of him in the order. Although he hasn’t been much of a leadoff hitter in his career, Murphy seems to think it’s working with this group ( “My goal is to grind out at-bats and just try to put on as good an at-bat against the opposing pitcher that I can. After seeing this lineup, everybody is doing it up and down the lineup, and I think that’s why we’ve been able to get the traffic on the basepaths the last few days.”
  • I think when Kris Bryant returns, we might often see a top four of Murphy, Bryant, Anthony Rizzo, and Ben Zobrist, which is going to be an absolutely brutal group to have to face right at the start of games. Not only can they do tremendous damage, but all four of them will work great at bats against you.
  • Bryant was unable to play this weekend for Players Weekend, but he’s still doing something positive with it:

  • Javy Baez with the Sammy hop on his dinger yesterday:
(Photo by David Banks/Getty Images)
  • WHOA. This is gonna be good:

  • Maybe this seems like an easy and obvious thing to do all the time, but when you consider how much time these guys are spending on their bodies and their sport, and then the fact that they are only home during the season for so many days – let alone weekend days – I find this kind of thing deeply impressive:

  • Also, I’ve mentioned this before, but it seems appropriate again: when the Cubs beat the Dodgers in the 2016 NLCS – the biggest win ever at Wrigley Field – Willson Contreras stayed on the field after the celebration and then circled the reachable parts of the stands so that he could give high fives and pose for pictures with fans.
  • Javy Baez is so good he just can’t help himself:

  • Crazy moment at Dodger Stadium:

  • The Cubs weren’t the only Chicago winner yesterday. The Bears also won, beating the Chiefs’ starters with their backups, which I’m pretty sure means the Super Bowl is a lock:

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.