Postseason Trends That Tell Us About 2023, Wainwright Will Eventually Retire, Winter Inside Wrigley Field, and Other Cubs Bullets

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Postseason Trends That Tell Us About 2023, Wainwright Will Eventually Retire, Winter Inside Wrigley Field, and Other Cubs Bullets

Chicago Cubs

Is today a Nacho Fries kinda day? I think it is. That “limited time” stuff always gets me. I am a marketing executive’s platonic ideal of a customer …

  • I had definitely noticed that we weren’t seeing the same volume of agonizing about the length of postseason games this year that we were seeing the last two seasons, and sure enough, they are down a little bit. Eno Sarris attributes the drop to Pitchcom:
  • First and foremost, that’s great. Nobody likes the dead time that happens while pitchers and catchers try to figure out a new set of signs because a runner on base is tugging at his pants in a weird way. Looking forward to next season when even more dead time gets eaten up by the pitch clock. But second and secondmost, it’s kinda hilarious that shaving things down to an AVERAGE of three hours and 22 minutes is a big drop. Good lord things had really just gotten so out of hand.
  • As for the article Sarris was originally sharing, it’s a very interesting look at how the postseason often serves as an incubator for things that wind up becoming trendy in the regular season. The stakes are highest and the usage lowest, so you often see a lot of “edge case” stuff where teams are grabbing every last little bit of advantage they can. Eventually, a little bit bleeds into the regular season.
  • One thing Sarris noted about this postseason that caught my eye? Spin rate is back up to the SECOND HIGHEST AVERAGE RATE EVER. Think about that. A year and a half ago, MLB started imposing sticky-stuff checks with severe penalties for violators (of which they caught just two). Spin rates dropped. And then they started climbing back up and up, and now – especially if the postseason is an indicator – they’re right back up to their extreme levels. We don’t yet know of a way to create huge gains in raw spin rate WITHOUT sticky stuff, so it’s a reasonable initial guess that many pitchers have found a way to replicate their old spin rates with new, less-obvious substances than Spider Tack. That seems bad. And if it does continue into next season, you can bet it’s going to come to a head, with the league trying to better re-enforce the sticky stuff ban.
  • It’s New York, so a disappointment in the ALCS means it’s time to wonder if Brian Cashman and Aaron Boone will get the boot, but it’s tentatively expected they will both return. Cashman needs a new contract, which is expected, and if that happens, then Boone returns, too, per SNY. Owner Hal Steinbrenner said of Boone that he doesn’t see a change happening there.
  • For a while now, the Cubs and the technically-slightly-separate proprietors of Gallagher Way outside Wrigley Field have put on a winter-themed park of sorts, with activities and events. It’s a good use of the space in the offseason, and I’ve enjoyed just being there and walking around (that’s kinda my jam). This year, the area will extend INTO Wrigley Field:
  • Starlin Castro facing Yoenis Cespedes in a 2022 professional baseball game (this is happening in the DR this year):
  • Shohei Ohtani is a unicorn, part 74:
  • The trade was good and appropriate, but dang if this part wasn’t a little brutal:
  • True terror:

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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.