Author’s Note – I can use recommendations on where to get box scores and the like for blogs. This broken ass screen shot from ESPN isn’t cutting it. Suggestions to @barstoolcarl please and thank you.
The Cubs just annihilated the Pirates 8-2 on the back of same very fine pitching by none other than the Lord Savior Jake The Snake Arrieta. Here’s some observations from today’s game.
- The Cubs are now 27-8 with an 8.5 game lead in the division. In May. Mid-May to be specific. Here’s a list of teams that have created an 8.5 game lead just 35 games into a season in the history of major league baseball: the 2016 Chicago Cubs. There might be more I just haven’t had time to fact check. Either way, this team’s on that list. So that’s good news. (I just talked myself into that and it feels good.)
- Jake was absolutely en fuego today. He consistently sat 94-95 in the bottom third of the strike zone. He pounded his sinker over the middle of the plate early against righties and then pounded them in harder with a two-seamer (more lateral movement in the on the hands) later in the count. That’s probably because (a) it was pretty cold and (b) the Pirates (as an offensive philosophy) tend to prefer the middle and opposite of the field. Some would even say they go the other way. In any event, when the weather is shitty like today, you can shut it down with a really good hard stuff on the inner part of the plate, especially up in the strike zone. Arrieta was able to get ahead early enough in the count to push the Pirates all over the batters box on 0-1, 0-2, and 1-2 consistently. As a result, he carved them up for 8 fantastic innings of 3 hit ball with 11 strikeouts and a tremendous amount of weak contact. The only downside being those 3 hits coming in near succession so the Pirates scratched a few runs on the board. But that’s when you know you’re talking about the best pitcher in the game. When your only downside is good old fashioned bad luck.
- Then that thing happened when the floodgates opened, again, for the Cubs’ offense in response to the Pirates lead in the top the 3rd. An infield single by Hewyard followed by a Bryant walk ultimately led to this Yabo creampie:
- Rizzo is on a tear. He’s become the bad boy of the National League and you should really embrace it. Yes, he’s all warm and fuzzy and cute with kids and blah blah blah. But let’s get some shit straight – this grown ass man is here to do one thing and one thing only. And that’s mash the cover off some fucking baseballs. Best part is he knows just how good he is at it so the swag just oozes from his game. Like the eye black on an EXTREMELY cloudy day move. Can’t pull that move unless you can hit ding dong yabo tacos onto roof tops so kudos to you Rizzo for showing up today.
- Heyward was 3-4 with a walk. Not trying to throw the guy a fuckin parade here but that’s certainly one way to start a streak. Take a look at Ben Zobrist. He was hitting .250 on May 4th. Since then he’s gone 13-25 with 8 walks against just 2 strikeouts in 34 plate appearances bring his season line to .310/.434/.487. Point is you can turn things around quickly this early in the season. Just need some momentum so feel free to lean on today’s game big fella. You earned it.
- Montero’s back and looked a little slow behind home plate. That’s a-okay though because he can take all the time he needs. The team is deep for a reason. Slow and steady wins the race. We need him healthy for the long haul and Ross and Feds are doing just fine with the staff.
- Addison Russell continues to dominate. He’s simply dynamic. I don’t know how else to describe it. He can do anything and everything at the ripe old age of 22. Look at how quick he get to this pitch.
- Addison Russell’s swing reminds me of Ken Griffey Baseball on Super Nintendo. The quickness is undeniably similar:
This video game is older than Addison Russell.
- The bullpen didn’t really pitch today other than Justin Grimm. That’s great because Rondon continues to preserve which, and I cannot be any more clear when I say this, has ZERO negative consequences. Spare me anything and everything about him not getting enough game work and all that shit. Just stop. This is fantastic across the board so be thrilled the bullpen is fresh.
- Coming up next is Jon Lester and may God have mercy on his soul, Gerrit Cole. We hate him for a lot of reasons, but mostly because he’s a princess. He’s the complete opposite of Jake Arrieta. He’s got big stuff, tons of flair, lots of swag, great beard, the list goes on. Unfortunately, that list also happens to include a fuck load of entitlement, and that’s not a good way to go about things especially when you’ve already established yourself as a fake tough guy like Cole. He’s been groomed and stroked as a prodigy since day one and it shows in his mound presence. Just loads of arrogance. That means we get a few early, let Wrigley rock his face off, then waltz our way to another series sweep. Too easy.