Last chance to get in on the Week 1 NFL promos if you are starting the sports betting thing and want some extra scratch. You can see all the promos gathered up here in the Bears v. Rams odds preview post.
• David Ross is expected back with the Cubs today after his COVID-related time away. Thankfully he never really got sick (Ross, notably, is vaccinated), and he must have tested negative a couple times in order to return. Andy Green returns to his bench coach duties, and Ross resumes in-game decision-making (he was already still making out the lineups). Bummer that he couldn’t be part of the festivities on Friday, but good that Ross gets to see Kris Bryant before the Giants leave town.
• Also with the Cubs now, new infielder (rehabbing) Nick Madrigal:
Enjoying this weekend at Wrigley https://t.co/UTuN32rfyy
— Nick Madrigal (@NickMadrigal_3) September 11, 2021
• I love this, by the way. It’s what Madrigal said Codi Heuer shared with him after he arrived with the Cubs (NBCSC): “He was saying, ‘It feels like one of the happiest places ever to play [at]. Everyone’s in a great mood — the fans, the atmosphere.’ That’s something that really stuck with me.” Think about that. That’s the vibe Heuer was getting AFTER THE TRADE DEADLINE. Quite a compliment to Cubs fans and the staff/players currently with the Cubs. And it can only get better from here, right?
• It’s only two weeks, but the Patrick Wisdom slump is deep:
Since launching his 25th home run of the season on Aug. 28, Patrick Wisdom has gone 4-for-45 (.089) with 22 strikeouts.
— Jordan Bastian (@MLBastian) September 11, 2021
• The strikeouts are obviously atrocious (though not entirely new), but the real issue has been the total lack of hits or power. He is generally not hitting the ball particularly hard right now when he does make contact, so that’d be your real concern if this lasted through the end of the year. As we’ve discussed, Wisdom’s enormous strikeout rate (and swing-and-miss at the top of the zone) will play only if he continues hitting the absolute bejeezus out of the ball. Whether that returns for the final few weeks or not, your approach on Wisdom for the offseason should remain the same: he’s a guy who should be part of the team next year, maybe even getting that starting shot at third, but his presence should not fundamentally alter anything the Cubs do this offseason if some other great opportunity comes up (and further, if he does wind up the starter at third as a pre-arbitration risky guy, then the Cubs better spend those savings aggressively elsewhere).
• Corbin Burnes and Josh Hader combined for a no-hitter last night, which isn’t quite as cool as when FOUR pitchers combine for a no-no, but they certainly did pitch exceptionally well:
• Burnes was pulled after the 8th because he was at 115 pitches, which is just too many to push further, even for history. It sucks for him that he doesn’t get the full no-no, but I’m sure he understands. The real risk, though, is that now that they’ve thrown a combined no-hitter, the Brewers are going on an 11-game losing streak and their season will go to shit. At least that’s my understanding of what has to happen after you throw a combined no-hitter.
• A couple of wild factoids: that was 9th no-hitter in MLB this year, a record. And it was the third no-hitter against the Indians this year (all started by Zach Plesac!), which is also a record. AND if you counted 7-inning games, it would be the FOURTH no-hitter against the Indians this year.
• Hey, how about Cubs reliever Scott Effross getting a sac fly yesterday:
• Javy Báez giveth and taketh in the Mets-Yankees showcase game last night:
Baez goes deep & we have ourselves a ballgame!!! pic.twitter.com/TsFbdFhbR4
— FOX Sports: MLB (@MLBONFOX) September 12, 2021
The Yankees take the lead on a wild throw! pic.twitter.com/dqZicSAQGz
— FOX Sports: MLB (@MLBONFOX) September 12, 2021
• The Dodgers now have TWO lefty starters that they acquired around midseason who won’t throw a pitch for them. After signing Cole Hamels, who was then shut down, the Dodgers also won’t get anything out of Danny Duffy, whose elbow has put him back on the shelf before he was able to debut. The 32-year-old lefty will be a free agent, and it’s going to be a weird one for a guy who was so solid when he was younger, then was thoroughly mediocre for a while, and then was bouncing back in a big way in his walk year before the elbow issues popped up. If he’s healthy this offseason, he’s almost certainly going to be viewed as a high-risk reclamation type (one-year, one-option type deals at best?).
• Great prospect day for the Cubs:
— John Antonoff (@baseballinfocus) September 11, 2021
• Hey, if you’re on Twitter and want to hook us up with the follow, please and thanks:
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— Bleacher Nation (@BleacherNation) September 12, 2021