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Cubs Heroes and Goats: Game 68

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What do you do when you're in second place on the plus / minus chart and 30 points behind the leader? Why, belt a couple of homers, of course.

He hit the ball real hard.
He hit the ball real hard.
Caylor Arnold-USA TODAY Sports

A lot of credit also goes to the bullpen, allowing only three hits over the last seven innings of the game. To pull off that feat and get the win against Clayton Kershaw... that's a good night by any measure.

Graphs for Game 68 (courtesy of Fangraphs):

Game 68 Chart 2015

Stats for Game 68:

Pitcher

IP

H

HR

ER

BB

SO

pLI

WPA

T Wood

3.1

1

0

0

3

4

1.09

.197

P Strop

1

0

0

0

1

2

1.72

.090

J Russell

0.2

0

0

0

0

0

1.98

.082

H Rondon

1

0

0

0

0

1

0.89

.065

J Motte

1

2

1

1

0

0

0.67

.027

T Wada

2

2

1

1

0

1

0.71

-.067

Total

9

5

2

2

4

8

1.02

.394

Batter

AB

R

H

HR

RBI

BB

SO

pLI

WPA

K Bryant

3

2

2

2

3

1

1

0.71

.288

M Szczur

3

1

1

1

1

0

0

0.94

.049

D Fowler

2

1

1

0

0

0

1

0.81

.010

C Denorfia

2

0

0

0

0

1

0

0.82

-.001

J Herrera

1

0

0

0

0

0

1

0.25

-.006

C Coghlan

2

0

0

0

0

0

2

0.29

-.014

T Wood

1

0

0

0

0

0

1

0.79

-.019

T Wada

1

0

0

0

0

0

1

0.85

-.023

A Rizzo

4

0

1

0

0

0

0

0.75

-.032

A Russell

3

0

0

0

0

0

1

0.62

-.044

D Ross

3

0

0

0

0

0

2

0.65

-.046

S Castro

4

0

0

0

0

0

0

0.56

-.055

Total

29

4

5

3

4

2

10

0.68

.106

Writer's Note: The daily selections of the three Heroes and three Goats are based solely on the top three and bottom three WPA scores for the game. The selections are not based on my subjective opinion.

THE THREE HEROES:

  • Superhero - Kris Bryant (.288). The Beast Mode switch was definitely activated.
  • Hero - Travis Wood (.197). Gave the Cubs just what they needed in an emergency situation.
  • Sidekick - Pedro Strop (.090). Got two big strikeouts after giving up the walk to Adrian Gonzalez.

THE THREE GOATS:

  • Billy Goat - Tsuyoshi Wada (-.067). Hopefully his injury won't keep him out of action for too long.
  • Goat - Starlin Castro (-.055). Nothing overly eventful in his 0-for-4 outing.
  • Kid - David Ross (-.046). Same for his 0-for-3 outing, but he did throw a couple of runners out trying to steal.
RANKINGS THROUGH GAME 68 ("x" indicates player not on active roster):

Bryant begins the long climb toward the top of the mountain, while Castro once again joins Chris Coghlan at the cellar door.

Heroes

1st

2nd

3rd

Total

Anthony Rizzo

9

17

1

62

Kris Bryant

7

7

6

41

Dexter Fowler

6

2

6

28

Miguel Montero

5.5

5.5

0

27.5

Starlin Castro

3

5

7

26

Addison Russell

4

2.5

5.5

22.5

Jake Arrieta

5.5

2

0.5

21

x-Jorge Soler

2

6

1

19

Chris Coghlan

4

0

5

17

Jason Hammel

4

2

0

16

Hector Rondon

0

5

3.5

13.5

Jon Lester

4

0

1

13

Travis Wood

1

2

2.5

9.5

Pedro Strop

1

0

6.5

9.5

x-Zac Rosscup

2

0

3

9

Kyle Hendricks

2

0

2

8

Jonathan Herrera

1

2

1

8

James Russell

0

3

1

7

Matt Szczur

2

0

0

6

x-Kyle Schwarber

2

0

0

6

x-Junior Lake

1

1

1

6

Jason Motte

0

1

4

6

Tsuyoshi Wada

1

1

0

5

x-Brian Schlitter

0

2

1

5

x-Phil Coke

1

0

0.5

3.5

Justin Grimm

0

0

3.5

3.5

Chris Denorfia

0

0

3.5

3.5

x-Welington Castillo

0

1

0

2

x-Arismendy Alcantara

0

1

0

2

David Ross

0

0

1

1

Edwin Jackson

0

0

1

1

Goats

1st

2nd

3rd

Total

Starlin Castro

7

4

8

37

x-Jorge Soler

4

8

4

32

Dexter Fowler

4

5.5

6.5

29.5

Chris Coghlan

2

7

8

28

Kris Bryant

4

5

4

26

Anthony Rizzo

2

6

2

20

Miguel Montero

2

5

4

20

Addison Russell

0

5

6

16

Pedro Strop

4

1

0

14

Hector Rondon

4

1

0

14

Kyle Hendricks

4

1

0

14

Jon Lester

4

0

1

13

Jake Arrieta

4

0

1

13

Tsuyoshi Wada

4

0

0

12

x-Zac Rosscup

3

1

1

12

Jason Hammel

2

3

0

12

David Ross

0

3.5

3.5

10.5

x-Brian Schlitter

3

0

1

10

Travis Wood

2

1

1

9

Justin Grimm

0

3

3

9

Edwin Jackson

2

1

0

8

Jason Motte

1

2

0

7

x-Welington Castillo

1

1

2

7

James Russell

1

1

0

5

x-Junior Lake

1

0

2

5

x-Mike Olt

1

0

1

4

Matt Szczur

0

1

2

4

Mike Baxter

1

0

0

3

x-Gonzalez Germen

1

0

0

3

x-Phil Coke

0

1

1

3

x-Kyle Schwarber

0

1

0

2

Jonathan Herrera

0

0

2

2

Chris Denorfia

0

0

2

2

x-Arismendy Alcantara

0

0

1

1

x-Neil Ramirez

0

0

1

1

Overall

Hero

Goat

+/-

Anthony Rizzo

62

20

42

Kris Bryant

41

26

15

Jake Arrieta

21

13

8

Miguel Montero

27.5

20

7.5

Addison Russell

22.5

16

6.5

Jonathan Herrera

8

2

6

Jason Hammel

16

12

4

x-Kyle Schwarber

6

2

4

James Russell

7

5

2

Matt Szczur

6

4

2

Chris Denorfia

3.5

2

1.5

x-Junior Lake

6

5

1

x-Arismendy Alcantara

2

1

1

Travis Wood

9.5

9

0.5

x-Phil Coke

3.5

3

0.5

Jon Lester

13

13

0

Hector Rondon

13.5

14

-0.5

Jason Motte

6

7

-1

x-Neil Ramirez

0

1

-1

Dexter Fowler

28

29.5

-1.5

x-Zac Rosscup

9

12

-3

Mike Baxter

0

3

-3

x-Gonzalez Germen

0

3

-3

x-Mike Olt

0

4

-4

Pedro Strop

9.5

14

-4.5

x-Brian Schlitter

5

10

-5

x-Welington Castillo

2

7

-5

Justin Grimm

3.5

9

-5.5

Kyle Hendricks

8

14

-6

Tsuyoshi Wada

5

12

-7

Edwin Jackson

1

8

-7

David Ross

1

10.5

-9.5

Starlin Castro

26

37

-11

Chris Coghlan

17

28

-11

x-Jorge Soler

19

32

-13