So Good to Have Bryant Back, Hendricks Feels Locked In, and Other Bullets

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So Good to Have Bryant Back, Hendricks Feels Locked In, and Other Bullets

Chicago Cubs

I’m not entirely sure The Mom knows I got a tattoo during the Blogathon. We’re visiting her today, and my short sleeves don’t cover it up, so … we’ll see how this goes.

  • Last night’s win was number 80 on the year for the Cubs, which didn’t come last year until September 14 (and the Cubs still won 92 games). It was September 8 in 2015, and that team won 97 games. With 27 games left, the Cubs could go 10-17 and they’d still hit the 90-win plateau (and the Cardinals would have to go 15-11 to pass the Cubs).

September just began and the #Cubs already have 80 wins! #EverybodyIn

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  • Kris Bryant will start in right field today, helping to fill in for the injured Jason Heyward and also to create more space for bats in the infield. Even as a superstar returning from the DL, he knows his role on a team like this:

  • Bryant notched a couple hits in his return last night, including a scalded double down the line to left, on which you can see the two-handed finish to his swing:

  • As for the shoulder, Bryant says it feels good ( “My shoulder feels good, strong. I’ve taken all the precautions to make sure it does feel good, which is taking a month off and tweaking some things here and there. I don’t know if he’s going to give me a day off because of the shoulder or because of feeling physically tired, but my shoulder feels good.”
(Photo by Hunter Martin/Getty Images)
  • As he has for so many second half starts now, Kyle Hendricks plainly just looked like Kyle Hendricks last night – working at the edges, sequencing batters into bad guesses and bad swings, and getting groundballs to help get out of trouble. He tells this is as good as he’s felt this year: “This is as locked in as I’ve felt for the most part. I’m making good pitches and putting together good sequences. Everything starts with fastball command for me. It’s just been getting better and better. Today, it was good from the start. My curveball has been coming along better and better and I’m using it more.”
  • A Phillies reliever had a card with him that he’s apparently taken to the mound with him every game this year, but last night Joe West made him get rid of it, as he does:

  • Here was West’s explanation, which is flat out incorrect:

  • And if you missed the enormously huge news in the Bears world yesterday, they pulled off the equivalent of trading for Bryce Harper and then signing him to a monster contract:

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.