No, That Horrible Call Probably Didn't Cost the Cubs the Game (But ...) and Other Cubs Bullets

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No, That Horrible Call Probably Didn’t Cost the Cubs the Game (But …) and Other Cubs Bullets

Chicago Cubs

The girls and I are going on a hike this morning with a group that hosts events for families with kiddos with special needs. It’s something we really got into before the pandemic, and this is their first event since late summer 2019. It has sucked that they weren’t able to proceed for so long, but I’m happy we now get to go back. Inclusion is important and good for the kiddos and for the families.

•   As we discussed in the EBS, David Ross got tossed in the 9th because of a truly terrible call with which he immediately beefed:

•   Ross’s explanation was perfectly clear (Cubs.com): “That looked extremely high,” Ross said. “We’ve got our leadoff guy on. We’ve got a guy who hits lefty pretty good for us who’s been hot. An 0-0 call with the closer out there, a guy that you want to get down in the zone, I mean, that’s just … I watched Cory all day. I have a ton of respect for him. That was a bad call. I mean, plain and simple.” Beep. Boop. Roboumps. Boop.

•   Did that call cost the Cubs the game? Oh, come on now, we can’t say that. Not for sure, anyway. But COULD a correct call there have made a difference? Of course! Pick whatever percentage you want, but there would’ve been some improvement in the Cubs’ chances to win if Marisnick starts out 1-0 after Hader just walked the leadoff man. Maybe Hader gets in his head a bit. Maybe he he doesn’t get calmed enough to get back into his mechanics. Who knows. But the chance is not zero. Ironically, Ross coming out to beef probably gave Hader even more of a moment to settle himself and get back into his mechanics.

•   By the way, if you were wondering: yes, strike one for Hader makes a huge difference. Batters against Hader in his career after starting 0-1 have almost no shot: .097/.148/.205 with a 58.2% strikeout rate (4.4% BB rate). But after starting 1-0? The line goes way up to .187/.347/.366, the strikeout rate drops to 33.0% and the BB rate leaps to 18.3%. Yeah, that call might’ve made a difference …

•   Ross also said that, regarding the pull of Adbert Alzolay in the 5th inning, he felt Alzolay was “a little out of sync” at that point (83 pitches, two on, lefty coming up). Like I said when it happened, I would like Alzolay to get a chance to pitch out of that situation soon, but I guess after a bit to cool off, I can recognize that the move to Rex Brothers – who has been pitching so well – against Kolten Wong in that moment was the right on-paper move. It didn’t work out, because Brothers had NO control, but I understand Ross’s thinking, especially if he felt the Cubs had picked up some issue with Alzolay getting out of his mechanics. I’m probably putting more “hope” onto the situation than “thought,” because I just really, really want to see Alzolay get over this middle-innings hump. I have been so freaking impressed by the stuff.

•   Nico Hoerner, who has started the last two days and has looked the part (Bastian): “Being a starting player in the Major Leagues is something that’s got to be earned. And I’ll continue to prove that. And I think the opportunity will be there if I do that.”

•   No doubt that Hoerner will continue getting opportunities in the near-term if he keeps looking like he has, with quality at bats and hard contact. Thanks to his own ability to move around defensively, plus the ability of others in the infield to move around (including into the outfield), there should be a start available for him just about every day that Joc Pederson is out. After Pederson returns, and the Triple-A season is beginning, we’ll see what the Cubs do. In the meantime, I just want to see him playing and see how the bat/approach looks. He’s had hot starts before, but we need to see that as pitchers approach him with the soft stuff outside the zone, he isn’t still putting junk weakly into play. So far, so good, but only two starts.

•   Fans, humidifiers, tools, baby gear, and more are your Deals of the Day at Amazon. #ad

•   Former Cubs prospect Jason Vosler, traded to the Padres back when for Rowan Wick, is now in the Giants organization and he’s getting called up. Good for him.

•   Fernando Tatis Jr. is unreal. Not only did he homer twice AGAIN last night, and not only did he homer twice off of TREVOR BAUER, but both times he gave Bauer the business:

•   (For reference: Bauer pitched in Spring Training with one eye closed for some reason, and Bauer also likes to do that shimmy strut thing when he strikes guys out.)

•   Whatever your feelings about Bauer, you do have to appreciate that he’s got the right attitude on this stuff:



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.