By Richard Kagan
This blog is about impressions not statistics. The Cubs won last night and have a two game lead over the Milwaukee Brewers. The Cubs won the game despite getting only three base hits.
This is what disburbs me: the Cubs are a streaky team. Yes, they have one of the better team BA in the National League. They have a great run differential. Was leading the League last time I checked, although that might have changed. The Cubs drive in runs, when the team hits.
Except, one doesn’t know when this team is gonna hit the ball. Some days they are smashing extra bases left and right. Last night, the team got some timely hitting from Victor Caratini, the reserve catcher who had a great a-bat to drive in a run on a liner that went over the second baseman’s glove. It was a ten pitch at-bat. Caratini fouled off pitch after pitch until he got one that he could put into play and Caratini made contact and drove in a run to make it 2-0 over the Brew Crew.
Jose Quintana pitched a terrific game going deep, shutting down the Brew Crew’s dangerous offense. The Bullpen held up its own and Chicago nailed down the win, to set up today’s game where Kyle Hendricks attempts to carry the pitching forward for the series win and another plus one win. It’s time to start talking about magic numbers and the Cubs magic number is 14, I believe.
Chicago is in the midst of a long consecutive game streak. If their scheduled game vs. Washington on Thursday is rained out, which it likely will be, the Cubs will finally have an off day after playing what seems like a gazillion games in a row. If Chicago is forced to play that game, then it will be playing for what might be 30 games straight. The light is at the end of the tunnel, wherever that is.
But Chicago is looking for a rainout and not a re-scheduling of the game in another city, as has been done in the past. The Cubs would like the game to be played at the end of the regular season if it affects the standings.
The Cubs have played most of their away games, and the long road trip recently concluded, ate up a lot of road games. They go on the road to Arizona and then cross-town to play the Chicago White Sox.
At this time of the season, the old adage, “one game at time” rings true. A commentator in last night’s game said that the Cubs are fighting to wrap up its division, something that was basically solved the last two years.
This is a different team. One thing you can say about the Cubs, is ” let’s see what happens.”