Recent News

Edwin Jackson Continues to Prove Competence Out of the ‘Pen

June 30th, 2015 at 6:26 PM
By Tim Duxbury

Remember the Edwin Jackson who led the league in losses (18) in 2013? Remember the guy who put up a 6.33 ERA in 2014 over the course of 140.2 innings? Apparently he is lost and some imposter is posing as Edwin Jackson on the Chicago Cubs’ 2015 roster. This imposter has pitched exclusively out of the bullpen and, by the numbers, has actually been really effective.

Pitcher

G (IP)

ERA

WHIP

.oba

W-L

Jackson

21 (29.0)

2.17

1.241

.231

2-1

(Stats per baseball-reference.com)

In addition to posting an impressive ERA, Jackson is rocking an impressive 7.8 hits allowed per nine innings; his lowest since he broke into the league back in 2003.

Most of Edwin Jackson’s innings this season have been in low-pressure situations, which is a polite way of saying “junk innings”, but its possible that he may have found himself in the Cubs’ bullpen. It wouldn’t be the first time that the Chicago Cubs have successfully converted a starter into a (mildly) successful reliever; former Cub, Ryan Dempster pitched out of the bullpen during his first four seasons in Chicago and logged 85 saves in three seasons as the team’s full-time closer.

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Cubs’ Trio of Prospects Continue to Show Progress

June 30th, 2015 at 6:14 PM
By Tim Duxbury

The Chicago Cubs’ minor league system was named baseball’s best in the month of April thanks to the fantastic starts by quite a few of their top prospects. In addition to the Tennessee Bash Brothers, the Cubs’ have gotten great production out of a trio of younger players; Albert Almora, Billy McKinney and Gleyber Torres.

Player

Level

.ave

.obp

HR

RBI

SB

Almora

AA

.246

.293222

4

McKinney

A+/AA

.323.392643

0

Torres

A

.319

.387

2

4210

(Stats per baseball-reference.com)

It seems like the majority of the attention surrounding the Chicago Cubs’ minor league system revolves around the big names: Javier Baez, Kyle Schwarber, Dan Vogelbach and Arismendy Alcantara, and rightfully so in most cases, but it’s important to give a shout out to everyone that’s tearing it up.

Almora, 21, McKinney, 20, and Torres,18, still have plenty of time left to develop before the fans will start calling for their promotions to the big leagues but you have to be excited about what they’ve done so far this spring.

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Time is Running Out to Cast Your 2015 All-Star Ballots

June 30th, 2015 at 5:57 PM
By Tim Duxbury

This year’s all-star game, which will be held in Cincinnati, is fast approaching as the calendar has now turned to June and a few Chicago Cubs players may be up for an invite. Many Cubs’ fans will do what they do every year and vote for all their favorite Cubs’ players but there are actually a few who are truly deserving of recognition at the mid-summer classic.

Anthony Rizzo:

This one is a no-brainer. Anthony Rizzo has been one of baseball’s hottest hitters this season and really turned his power game up a notch last month with seven home runs. The Cubs’ 25-year-old first baseman was hitting .304 with 15 home runs, 44 RBI and 11 stolen bases entering play on today. Rizzo is currently leading the Cubs in Home runs, doubles, RBI's, walks (tied), steals (tied) and on base percentage. First base is always a tough position in the NL with guys like Adrian Gonzalez, of the Los Angeles Dodgers, Joey Votto, of the Cincinnati Reds, and Paul Goldschmidt, of the Arizona Diamondbacks, but Rizzo is right up there with the best.

Kris Bryant:

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Off Day Provides Much Needed Break for Cubs

June 30th, 2015 at 5:43 PM
By Tim Duxbury

The Chicago Cubs had a much-needed day off yesterday and were able to lounge in the sun and take their mind off of baseball. The casual fan may not understand the true value of an off day, but anyone who has significant experience in the game of baseball knows that off days can be life-savers.

Playing 162 games in a summer is a brutal schedule but on top of that players also have to travel cross-country, through different time zones, deal with the media, concentrate on their craft and study the upcoming opponent; most of the time, all of that leads to a nine-plus hour day at the ballpark. And going through that kind of routine, day it and day, out can push you to the edge of your sanity.

So on off days most players try and get as far away from baseball as possible (unless they have a plane to catch). Many use the time to play golf, hang out with their families or just loaf around. Getting away from the game is most beneficial to a player who is slumping because they are able to feel the weight lifted off their shoulders for a day. For 24 hours they have no problems at work. They don’t have to talk to the media, they don’t have to see their batting average on the scoreboard, they don’t have to be mentally locked in for 3 hours, nothing.

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Chicago Cubs’ Fact Pack, June 30th

June 30th, 2015 at 2:17 PM
By Tim Duxbury

1. The Chicago Cubs are ninth in the big leagues with 49 stolen bases this season. Anthony Rizzo and Dexter Fowler are tied for the team lead with 11 steals which is impressive in its own right seeing as how Rizzo is one steal shy of doubling is previous career high and Fowler has already matched his 2014 total.

2. The Chicago Cubs’ .981 fielding percentage currently ranks 26th in the big leagues and three of the four teams below them (Milwaukee Brewers, Philadelphia Phillies, Texas Rangers and Oakland Athletics) are in last place in their respective divisions.

3. Pitching is clearly the key to winning championships and despite all the criticism that the Cubs’ staff has received, they have put themselves in elite company. Opponents are currently hitting .241 against them, which is good for 6th best in the majors; four of the five teams ahead of the Cubs are leading their respective division.

Stats per Cubs.com

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