6:59 PM EDT, Tue August 20, 2019
58 mins ago
Cubs, Giants open 3-game series at Wrigley Field

Cubs, Giants open 3-game series at Wrigley Field

Photo by Jonathan Daniel/ Tuesday’s game threads are all right here.
59 mins ago
Chicago Cubs vs. San Francisco Giants preview, Tuesday 8/20, 7:05 CT

Chicago Cubs vs. San Francisco Giants preview, Tuesday 8/20, 7:05 CT

Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports The Cubs go for their third straight win. The Cubs begin tonight’s action half a game behind the Cardinals, who defeated the Brewers Monday. The best scenario for tonight, then, would be for the Cubs to defeat the Giants and the Brewers to beat the Cardinals. That would put the Cubs back in first place and keep them 2½ games ahead of Milwaukee. This homestand features Joe Maddon’s annual “American Legion Week,” where players are asked to show up later at the ballpark and just play the game, as they did when they were teenagers and would have played...
3 hours ago
Exactly how out of control are MLB home run numbers this year?

Exactly how out of control are MLB home run numbers this year?

Anthony Rizzo hits a towering opposite field HR in the Little League Classic | Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports Over half of MLB teams are on pace to break their single season home run records. As you may have surmised one of my favorite things about baseball is the numbers aspect of the game. I’m not sure exactly how old I was the first time I cracked open my the giant book of baseball players and stats that my parents kept on their coffee table, but I do know I was hooked immediately. There were whole teams and leagues that didn’t exist anymore. There were periods where the game...
5 hours ago
Chase Strumpf and developmental consistency

Chase Strumpf and developmental consistency

Chase Strumpf playing for UCLA | How is the Cubs’ second-round pick doing this year, and what does it mean for organizational development? Chase Strumpf , the Cubs’ second-round draft choice in the 2019 process, is an offense-first second baseman from UCLA. He recently hit his first full-season ball homer for South Bend in his second game at the level. If someone were assessing the Cubs talent pipeline, Strumpf would likely be near the bottom of the top dozen. If the organization’s pool is getting to where it should be, Strumpf should be allowed to develop without worry (for...
7 hours ago
Teams with losing road records have won the World Series, and more than once

Teams with losing road records have won the World Series, and more than once

Photo by Rich Pilling/ Let’s have a look at these teams. How did they do it? Heading into tonight’s action at Wrigley Field, the Cubs have a 41-19 record at what Ernie Banks termed the “Friendly Confines.” That’s a .683 winning percentage, the equivalent of a 111-win full season. And yet, this home juggernaut hits the road and simply forgets how to win. Their 25-39 record away from Wrigley is a .391 winning percentage, the equivalent of a 99-loss regular season. This makes no logical sense. How can a team that wins that easily in one place look like nearly the worst team in...
9 hours ago
A few notes on postseason roster eligibility and other roster rules

A few notes on postseason roster eligibility and other roster rules

Photo by Rob Leiter/MLB Photos via Here’s what it takes for a player to be postseason-eligible, and how it applies to Ben Zobrist. Ben Zobrist, who is currently on personal leave from the Cubs dealing with his divorce, is on the Restricted List. It’s widely expected that Zobrist will return to the Cubs, likely in September, and thus will be eligible for postseason play. There have been some misconceptions about just who is eligible for postseason play and how that’s determined. This article is intended to clear up those misconceptions. It used to be that only players on a team’s...
10 hours ago
Cub Tracks puts in the time

Cub Tracks puts in the time

Photo by Elsa/ “The hardest game in the world," and other bullets Monday was an off-day. Tonight, the Cubs resume play against the Giants at Wrigley Field after having finally won a road series. Let’s hope that means better days are ahead because the ground beneath the ledge is still slippery and they’re still taking numbers at the window. The Cubs Triple-A team looks pretty damn good right now. Some guys are down there to get consistent at-bats, others are on the rehab trail. We’ll see how they respond. Here’s today’s Cubs News and Notes. As always, * means autoplay on, or...
17 hours ago
Minor League Wrap: Iowa back on track, beats Missions 9-5

Minor League Wrap: Iowa back on track, beats Missions 9-5

Jim Adduci | Dylan Heuer Iowa had the only win tonight, but it was a big one that moved them closer to a postseason berth. Alexander Guerra hits two home runs in an Ems heartbreaker. Iowa Cubs The Iowa Cubs foiled the San Antonio Missions (Brewers), 9-5. Colin Rea improved his record to a league-best 13-3, but his league-leading ERA took a hit as he allowed five runs on seven hits over five innings. Rea walked three and struck out seven. (Rea still leads the league in ERA at 3.71.) The Iowa franchise record for wins in a season in 14. Rea should get two or three more starts before the...
22 hours ago
Cubs roster move: David Bote optioned to Iowa

Cubs roster move: David Bote optioned to Iowa

Photo by Quinn Harris/ This is apparently in preparation for activating Steve Cishek. There has been much speculation about who would be removed from the 25-man roster when Steve Cishek was activated, expected to happen before Tuesday’s game. Some thought Pedro Strop might head back to the injured list. There isn’t another obvious choice on the pitching staff, and thus here is the somewhat surprising move: Cubs option David Bote to AAA Iowa today.Just ahead of Steve Cishek's anticipated activation from IL (hip)— Gordon Wittenmyer (@GDubCub) August 19, 2019 David Bote has had...
Aug 19, 2019
Jose Quintana’s struggles as a Cub are almost exclusively because of Wrigley Field

Jose Quintana’s struggles as a Cub are almost exclusively because of Wrigley Field

Jon Durr-USA TODAY Sports Now, that’s a bold headline. But I have numbers to back up this claim. When the Cubs acquired Jose Quintana in 2017, he had been one of the most consistent starters in the American League for the five previous seasons. He threw 200+ innings in four of those five seasons, and didn’t in the fifth because that was his rookie season when he made his debut in May 2012. His ERAs ranged from 3.20 to 3.76 in his White Sox years from 2012-16. His WHIP was again in a narrow range: 1.163 to 1.350. Even though he had struggled a bit early in 2017 (4.49 ERA, 1.323 WHIP...
Aug 19, 2019
Today in 1969 Cubs history: Ken Holtzman throws a no-hitter

Today in 1969 Cubs history: Ken Holtzman throws a no-hitter

MLB via It was one of the best days of the year. Ken Holtzman was pitching in the big leagues for the Cubs at age 19. The next year, 1966, he matched up against Sandy Koufax in what was billed as “The Battle of the Jewish Lefties” and nearly no-hit the pennant-winning Dodgers on September 25, allowing just one walk and facing the minimum through eight innings, settling for a 2-1, two-hit complete-game win. He threw a couple of two-hitters in 1968 and another one in early August 1969 and fans figured a no-hitter might eventually happen. August 19, 1969 dawned sunny in Chicago and,...
Aug 19, 2019
Cubs announce 2020 spring training schedule

Cubs announce 2020 spring training schedule

Al Yellon Time to make your plans for Mesa next year! Last week, Major League Baseball, the Cubs and other teams had their earliest-ever release of the following year’s schedule. With the release of the 2020 spring training schedule in August, that gives you plenty of time to plan a trip to the Valley of the Sun to see the Cubs play spring games next year. Next spring will feature the earliest-ever beginning to the schedule, Saturday, February 22. All told, there will be 17 home games at Sloan Park and 15 away games. The Cubs play their last Cactus League game Monday, March 23 at Sloan...
Aug 19, 2019
2019 Cubs Heroes and Goats: Game 124

2019 Cubs Heroes and Goats: Game 124

Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports Cubs win second straight 7-1; close out trip 4-6 And so the trip ends on a high note. Technically, the Cubs finally win a road series. This one is a little odd, given two different sites for the games. At this point, we’ll all certainly take it. The Cubs finally win a road series for the first time in three months. Of course, that comes against the coldest team in the N.L. Baby steps. Jose Quintana had a very nice start and that makes four good starts in a row to finish out the road trip. If one can say it, the pitching staff wasn’t all that bad on this...
Aug 19, 2019
Cubs 7, Pirates 1: A big-league performance in the Little League Classic

Cubs 7, Pirates 1: A big-league performance in the Little League Classic

Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports That’s how the Cubs can, should, and hopefully will play every day from here on out. Joe Maddon has coined a lot of pithy and worthwhile sayings in his time as manager of the Cubs. One of them, a mantra for his ballplayers to live by, is: “Don’t let the pressure exceed the pleasure.” This looks like pleasure for Anthony Rizzo, doesn’t it? Enjoy this video of @ARizzo44 living his best life and sliding down a hill at the Little League World Series. pic.twitter.com/HwhMvXItlN— Cut4 (@Cut4) August 18, 2019 The Cubs seemed to completely embrace...
Aug 19, 2019
MLB Bullets always runs it out

MLB Bullets always runs it out

Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports Ronald Acuna Jr. got benched for not hustling, but it doesn’t seem like it’s going to be a big deal. There’s a lot of great, young hitters in the game today. Relief pitching is a mess. Chris Davis met a young fan who inspired him. I’m a pretty great writer. For example, you may not know that I wrote Catch-22, Infinite Jest and Fight Club. Don’t believe me? Just re-read that second sentence again. I can promise you I wrote every one of those words. Braves superstar Ronald Acuña Jr. was was benched in Sunday’s game against the Dodgers for not...