What It's Like to Watch the Cubs on the Road, the Decision to Pull Darvish, and Other Bullets

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What It’s Like to Watch the Cubs on the Road, the Decision to Pull Darvish, and Other Bullets

Chicago Cubs

The loss last night dropped the Cubs to 23-38 on the road this year, a .377 winning percentage. Over a season, that would be a 61-101 team. That was the Cubs’ record in 2012, the worst year of the rebuild. We are watching a 100+ loss Cubs team every time they take to the road. It is every bit as awful as you think it is. Probably worse.

  • Yu Darvish was brilliant last night again (more on that later), but was pulled at 92 pitches through 7.0 innings, looking like he was cruising. He and the coaches suggest it was an obvious pull:

  • While I strongly beef with the choice of Tony Kemp to pinch hit (and not play defense) and the choice of Pedro Strop to try to clean up the 9th, I don’t really have a problem with Joe Maddon pulling Darvish there. For one thing, he’s been pulling Darvish early all year, and I’d say it’s gone pretty darn well, since Darvish is currently pitching at an ace level. For another thing, with a fully rested bullpen and a five-run lead, it just isn’t out of the norm to pull a pitcher at 92 pitches with only two innings to cover. The decision looks bad in hindsight, and I’m not saying it was an affirmatively GOOD decision; I’m just saying among the managerial choices last night, that one doesn’t roil me.
  • This is the perfect write up of the loss, balancing the sharing of information, the casting of criticism, and acknowledgement of flukiness:

  • I didn’t know a GIF of dots could be so depressing:

  • Some respect for Derek Holland:

  • Today is eight years TO THE DAY after the last time the Cubs lost on a walk-off grand slam (h/t Paul Casella). Isn’t that freaking crazy? “Enjoy” it:

  • Ben Zobrist made his Iowa Cubs debut last night (0-3, BB, K, playing second base). I can’t help but wonder how quickly the big league team will try to get him back. On the one hand, better to have an effective Zobrist than not, but on the other hand, is it really enough to have a few games in Low-A, a few games in High-A, and then a few games at AAA? Seems like game-readiness might require a little longer stay at AAA.
  • The Cubs Shop is having a sale with the code FASTBALL, so check that out.

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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.