Brewers 2, Cubs 0; Brewers 15, Cubs 2; Brewers 3, Cubs 1

In Postgame by berselius131 Comments

 

What's next: The Cubs have an off day, then play what's left of the Mets.

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  1. Perkins

    While the Cubs should have taken at least one in this series, there’s also no reason for Rivera to start over Avila, or for Schwarber to ride the pine against RHP. When the offense is already struggling, it makes no sense for Maddon to handicap it further.

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  2. Smokestack Lightning

    I blame Conan. Every time you guys post that meme, the team shits its pants for the next 10+ games. Stick to the “all-is-lost” memes, plz.

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  3. Smokestack Lightning

    josh:
    I somehow failed to remember to watch or listen to a single game in this series and now I’m glad.

    For the most part, me too. Only reason I give even a minor shit at this point is because I cannot abide the thought of that bullshit Cardinals team somehow falling ass-backwards into the postseason.

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  4. Myles

    Can I give my hot take here?

    Joe Maddon isn’t a very good coach. His schtick is grating and I don’t think he gives a shit anymore. He looks like a prisoner of war in the dugout.

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  5. Edwin

    Myles,

    Did players/fans in Tampa start to get a bit tired of his schtick? He definitely seems like the type of manager that his antics seem fun when the team is winning and everything is gravy, but the same antics seem annoying when the team is losing and struggling.

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  6. Perkins

    Myles,

    I’m frankly baffled that the guy who has transparently made unpopular or otherwise controversial moves (e.g., benching Castro, having an uncommonly quick hook with Hammel, using Heyward as a defensive replacement in the postseason) in order to maximize win probability is managing the lineups as he has been.

    I can’t see a good reason to bench Schwarber in favor of Zobrist or Heyward, or to start Rivera more than once a week with Avila on the roster. It makes me wonder what’s going on in the clubhouse, because there has to be something we’re all missing.

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  7. dmick89

    Myles,

    I think he got treated as a good manager for a long time because the Rays were good and he understood the value of getting on base. I think he’s middle of the pack among MLB managers.

    I don’t want to complain too much about Joe. He’s made as many dumb decisions this year as each of the last two seasons. The cubs just haven’t been able to afford as many of them this year. I think there is a lot of blame to go around. We could add the front office to the list too, but it’s mostly on the players. Even with the injuries this decision should not be close.

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  8. dmick89

    Thinking about next season and beyond, the Cubs outfield is Schwarber, Happ??? abd Heyward. The rotation is Lester, Quintana, Hendricks and probably Monty and a free agent. They have no closer and the rest of the bullpen is questionable.

    A lot can happen in free agency, but that team has so many things to fix. It’s hard to believe they were easily the best team in baseball in 2016.

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  9. Edwin

    dmick89,

    I was thinking about that too. A lot of area’s to address, and it’s not like the Cubs have many prospects left to trade. That leaves either trading MLB assets, which is harder to make Net improvements to the MLB team, and FA, which is expensive.

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  10. Myles

    I’m a crazy person, but I still (STILL!) think Schwarber is going to be a great hitter in 2018 and beyond. I’m probably an idiot for thinking so, but I’m very fine with giving him the opportunity to play LF opening day next year. Probably need a good backup in case of emergency, but I like him there. Heyward is a big problem because he just isn’t a quality hitter anymore and may never regain that ability. Almora and Happ are probably timesharing CF and that’s a problem too.

    At least the infield is pretty well set with Rizzo/Baez/Russell/Bryant, and we have a decent backup in Zobrist.

    We’re fucked as far as pitchers go.

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  11. Edwin

    I think Schwarber can hit in the 120-140 wRC+ range. I don’t know if he’ll be the awesome superstar some were thinking he’d be, but I think he can be an above average starter.

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  12. Myles

    Edwin:
    I think Schwarber can hit in the 120-140 wRC+ range.I don’t know if he’ll be the awesome superstar some were thinking he’d be, but I think he can be an above average starter.

    Same here. I’ll take a 130 wRC+ in LF, though. Not an MVP candidate, but an All-Star LF is still a pretty great outcome.

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  13. Edwin

    I’m fine with Schwarber in LF. CF/RF is more a problem, because I’m not sure how much mileage the Cubs can continue to get out of an Almora/Player X platoon, and Heyward is spotty. I keep thinking his bat will bounce back, but I also still think Randy Wells should get one more shot at a starting rotaton spot.

    Baez has actually impressed me enough that I think a starting IF of Bryant/Baez/Russell/Rizzo is still pretty great, although the hitting might be a little light from Baez and Russell.

    Contreras is great at C, but they’ll likely want a good backup Catcher. It’s a need, but a minor one.

    So going into the offseason, the Cubs need a Closer, probably another solid setup BP arm, a 4th or 5th Starter, a 4th OF, and a backup C.

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  14. Berselius is too lazy to login

    Edwin: but I also still think Randy Wells should get one more shot at a starting rotaton spot.

    *reports identity theft to authorities*

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  15. Smokestack Lightning

    Edwin: So going into the offseason, the Cubs need a Closer, probably another solid setup BP arm, a 4th or 5th Starter, a 4th OF, and a backup C. better fucking team

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  16. dmick89

    Myles: I’m a crazy person, but I still (STILL!) think Schwarber is going to be a great hitter in 2018 and beyond. I’m probably an idiot for thinking so, but I’m very fine with giving him the opportunity to play LF opening day next year.

    I’m fine with that too. He easily has the highest ceiling of the Cubs outfielders so I don’t want to give up on him. I’m also fine with a Schwarber/Almora platoon. Almora has been great against lefties in his career though it is a small sample. I’d still expect him to be around 110-120 wRC+ against lefties. Happ has questionable defense in CF, but more experience should improve that. The problem is that it’s entirely possible he’s a 75-85 wRC+ guy with terrible defense and then you’ve got Heyward who is practically a black hole offensively. Add to that Russell and Baez being about league average or worse and the offense sucks.

    Starting pitching is probably less of an issue as far as 2018 goes. Lester, Quintana, Hendricks is a pretty good top of the rotation. Monty probably works fine as a 4th or 5th starter and the Cubs should be able to find a 4th or 5th starter through free agency. The bullpen is a mess unless you happen to think Edwards can be a really good closer. I don’t. I think Edwards best days are already behind him. His control is spotty at best and probably closer to terrible or horrible. It’s really pretty bad that a team that can’t develop any starting pitching also can’t find any useful relievers out of them. You almost have to try to be in that position.

    I’m not too concerned about it, but I really hope we see more power from Bryant next season. He’s been a little banged up so perhaps the lack of home runs is because of that. He’s been great so it’s not been a huge issue, but the Cubs would score more runs if he was hitting more home runs.

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  17. Rizzo the Rat

    Brewers lose (at this point last year, the Brewers were so far off my radar, I wasn’t sure what division they played in.)

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  18. Perkins

    I was going to post a picture of John Mabry until I remembered the magic number is still 18 because of the fucking Cardinals.

    I also think it’s likely that the Cubs win 9 and each of the Cardinals and Brewers loses 9 over the rest of the season, but it may come down to the final weekend and that’s bullshit.

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  19. sharpchicity

    All of these comments are basically of the “every single player is going to continue at their worst possible level moving forward” variety.

    The bright side is that last year, we had the 2nd best offense in baseball by wRC+ at 112. This year we’re 7th at 106 and besides Wilson/Bryant/Rizzo, every one of our hitters has under performed preseason expectations. It’s doubtful that they all do the same next year.

    I agree our bullpen is a mess, but it’s also the most fickle part of a roster as we’ve seen with Rondon & Strop going from studs to unusable in the span of last season alone.

    Yes, our minor league teams are lacking high impact talent, but we still only need 1 guy to magically be a contributor as most of our team isn’t going to be replaced in the next 3 years.

    Everybody here is all doom and gloom even though we’re going at an 87 win clip and nothing has gone right for us. Next year, we’ll be pegged for 87-90 wins (dependent on arrieta’s replacement) and that’ll be good enough to be favorites in the division. 5 years ago, everyone wanted a dynasty, We have that right now, but it’s not perfect. give the front office and players the benefit of the doubt as they deserve that and more for what they’ve accomplished in the last 3 years.

    Re: Joe. He does some weird shit. That’s true. That said, Avila has been the 2/3rd worst framer in all of baseball in the past 3 years and is a below average defensive catcher looking at other stats. It’s a safe assumption from other data points that Joe values defense more than the average manager, and add in the fact that Avila has hit .217 and struck out in 47% of his PA’s in the past two weeks, it’s not a huge surprise that he’s equally splitting time between Rivera and Avila in the last 2 weeks.

    /rant

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  20. dmick89

    sharpchicity: All of these comments are basically of the “every single player is going to continue at their worst possible level moving forward” variety.

    I think a lot of what you said in your comment is right so it may not be fair picking out the beginning as an example where you’re exaggerating. I think all of us have included Lester and Quintana as top of the rotation starters and neither have performed anywhere near that this year. The same is probably even true of Hendricks. I think most of us here are also expecting more from Schwarber. So I don’t think we’re basing this on the assumption that these players won’t improve. I know I expect some to and I also some will perform worse.

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  21. cerulean

    sharpchicity: All of these comments are basically of the “every single player is going to continue at their worst possible level moving forward” variety.

    False. My recent comments have been about how the Dodgers are never going to win another game.

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  22. Perkins

    I expect Bryant’s power will return next year. It seemed to be coming back after his thumb injury, and then he got hit on the wrist by a pitch. I’m frankly surprised and impressed that he’s still playing, let alone producing.

    Hendricks has been improving and looks more like himself. I’d assume Lester and Quintana rebound next season as well. Ditto Schwarber.

    The ones I’m most concerned about are Zobrist (age) and Heyward. I don’t know if injuries derailed the progress Heyward appeared to be making earlier in the season, but his contract is looking awfully big for a defensive replacement. I’d assume he will figure it out, but his recent track record is getting big enough to indicate otherwise.

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  23. Edwin

    dmick89,

    Because it’s easier to ignore other people’s problems. Part of enjoyment of the NFL is based on ignoring unpleasant truths, such as how many of these players are basically killing themselves slowly in front of our eyes due to repeated blunt force trauma to the head. I have a love/hate relationship with the NFL. When I’m in the moment, I love watching football. It’s fast and highly entertaining. But when I step back and look at everything that happens around the NFL, and actually think about things, being a fan of the NFL starts to get a bit murkier. Many just choose not to think about it.

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  24. BVS

    Except for whining about too many day games and bad calls, I’m still pretty happy with Maddon as manager. He does make some odd moves, but as long as he never puts Lester in to relieve with men on base again, then I think he’ll be ok.

    Don’t remember which Brewers game Baez took off while on the field (2nd one?) but I’d have started Zo at SS the next night.

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  25. Rizzo the Rat

    BVS: as long as he never puts Lester in to relieve with men on base again, then I think he’ll be ok.

    I’m honestly baffled why people single this out as a bad move by Maddon. It wasn’t his fault Ross threw the ball away.

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  26. Rizzo the Rat

    The World Series moves by Maddon that bothered me the most were using Chapman for multiple innings in game six and bunting with Baez in a two-strike count.

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  27. BVS

    Rizzo the Rat,

    Because everyone knew the Indians would run and they had already decided the game plan was only to bring him in to start an inning. Ross basically was forced to throw by Joe’s decision.

    Agree about Chapman. Almost worked out like Joe Borowski.

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  28. BVS

    I’ve been thinking about some simple things that would make baseball safer lately. Not sure why. Anyway…

    1. Extend nets down the lines farther to reduce fan injuries from fouls and lost bats.

    2. Make Baez attach a chinstrap to his helmet. Since he hurt himself last week I’ve seen his helmet come off or be loose a few more times while running.

    3. Helmet chin guard like Hayward for everyone–even Gaetti.

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