Extra Pressure Today, Kintzler's Injury, Surprising Front Office Interview, and Other Bullets

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Extra Pressure Today, Kintzler’s Injury, Surprising Front Office Interview, and Other Bullets

Chicago Cubs

Five days away is just long enough to get me totally out of my routines, and set me up for struggles in adjusting back. I have already asked two people what day today is because I’m so out of the loop. It’s Wednesday. Wednesday.

  • Today’s game is certainly not a must-win in any sense that goes beyond the idea that there are very few games left and the Cubs “must win” most of them if they would like to secure a playoff spot. But with the Cardinals on the horizon for four at Wrigley Field, it does feel like staying *at least* two games back of the Cardinals for the top spot of the division is imperative. And that’s to say nothing of the indefatigable Brewers and their gloriously cake schedule from here on out. Moreover, the Cubs have only so many “obviously winnable” games left, so winning those ones – even without Anthony Rizzo and Javy Baez – is critical. Need the rest of the bats to turn it on tonight.
  • Speaking of key injured players … Brandon Kintzler’s oblique injury was another one of those that wasn’t quite severe enough to immediately knock him down, but also didn’t quite work to pitch through:

  • Sure enough, Kintzler saw a big velocity drop in his final two appearances, so it was a good idea to sit down. The problem nows is that if he needs a couple bullpen sessions before he can even be ready, you’re looking at maybe not having him back until the final week of the season.
  • Relatedly, Craig Kimbrel – who threw a successful simulated game yesterday – could be back this weekend:

  • Offensively, the Cubs need to keep Nick Castellanos and Kyle Schwarber together in the lineup right now. Getting those guys back-to-back-to-back with Kris Bryant is a pretty punishing middle of the lineup, despite the Rizzo and Baez absences.
(Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
  • Speakers and soundbars are among your Deals of the Day today at Amazon.
  • Nobody has covered the Cubs’ rapid advancements in their pitching infrastructure better than Sahadev Sharma, and the insights he offers into the Pitch Lab out in Mesa are always worth your time:

  • And, oh man, if the Cubs actually did manage to land Driveline’s Kyle Boddy for their front office? That would be a coup.
  • Keep in mind, the Cubs did just open up the top scouting and player development job in their organization when moving Jason McLeod over to the big league side. That may not be what Boddy is getting a look for, specifically, but it just means that reorganization is underway.
  • In case you would like to continue being annoyed about the Brewers’ success, and also their genius pick-up of Drew Pomeranz:

  • Pomeranz, by the way, has a 2.53 ERA and stellar peripherals over 20.1 innings since he was traded to the Brewers.
  • It’s cool. Cubs got their own Pomeranz at the deadline:

  • Heh:

  • Award-winning kicker, Eddy Piñeiro:



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.