Catching Up in the Standings, Heyward's Heat, Good TV Sign, and Other Bullets

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Catching Up in the Standings, Heyward’s Heat, Good TV Sign, and Other Bullets

Chicago Cubs

The best version of ‘Landslide’ is the Smashing Pumpkins version. Sorry if this offends.

  • A 3-4 road trip through Colorado and Los Angeles never would have been a bad outcome, and by salvaging the final game of the series against the Rockies, the Cubs have left open a very realistic chance at that 3-4 road trip if they can split with the Dodgers. That may sound like a low bar, but the Dodgers are the best team in the NL, playing at home, and the Cubs are going West. It’s just one of those stretches where you take a near .500-ish record and be happy about it.
  • … but hey, if the Cubs want to win the series and thus have a winning road trip? That’d be lovely, too.
  • It took more than two and a half months, but after tonight’s game against the Dodgers, the Cubs will have *FINALLY* played the same number of games as the Brewers (and thus will have the same number of scheduled off-days going forward). It’s been such a wonky early schedule because the rainouts MLB was clearly anticipating didn’t actually happen. The back-end of the schedule is still brutal for the Cubs, but at least the volume of games from here on out is equal.
  • Also, if the Cubs can win tonight, they’ll be fully and completely tied with the Brewers atop the standings:

  • Still can’t get enough of Javy Baez enjoying every second of his homer after Anthony Rizzo got plunked:

  • Jason Heyward is back into a nice hot stretch, hitting .311/.407/.500 (137 wRC+) since May 19. The best part is that there really isn’t anything obviously flukey in there aside from a slightly inflated HR/FB rate. The walk and strikeout rates look very good and sustainable, the BABIP is high but not crazy high, and he’s making a ton of hard contact in the air, while keeping down the ground balls and the soft contact.
(Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)
  • A good sign on the Cubs’ TV network carriage front, as its partner in Marquee, Sinclair Broadcasting, has already nailed down a carriage deal for the FOX RSNs it bought from Disney:

  • Although they aren’t precisely the same thing, and Marquee is going to be more expensive than most, it’s probably a good sign that Sinclair is getting carriage deals already for the FOX RSNs, and suggests the process could be smooth for the Cubs’ TV network, too.
  • Happy 34th birthday to Pedro Strop:

  • Our latest podcast episode over at The Athletic:

  • How nice that Cardinals fans had something to cheer:

  • Our friends at Obvious Shirts came up with a new one for folks who want to show support for Joe Maddon:

  • That sounds good to me if the development keeps coming:

  • It’s, um, challenging to discern exactly what the Bulls front office views as an appropriate strategy:

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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.