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Cub Tracks rings one up

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Around the bend, KB comes back, Q hits two, and other bullets

bell weather
Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images

I’m not at liberty to say the words I’d use to describe my feelings at the end of the game. They’re probably unprintable even in game threads, as I have quite the supply of invective. Writers know words, or at least, we should. Some of mine are reserved for Citizen’s Bank, with whom I have had past misdealings...but I digress, as is my wont.

The Phillies mugged the Cubs like Santa Claus in August, and we can just hope that the body isn’t stuffed down the chimney like in the famous Gahan Wilson cartoon, and that the Cubs will recover today.

Al’s recap will have details about the extra-inning would-be bellwether. Here, we have hot and cold takes on Joe Maddon’s imminent exit, Kris Bryant’s return, Q hitting two, The Joe West experience, and other subjects both near and dear. Please read on to dig the latest muck. As always * means autoplay on, or annoying ads, or both (directions to remove for Firefox and Chrome).

Cubs News and Notes:

The Cubs finished August with an 18-10 mark and now are a combined 76-37, in August, over the last four years, all under Joe Maddon. Maddon’s record in August going back to 2009, combined between Tampa Bay and Chicago, is 165-113. — Jesse Rogers.

Quintana raised his career batting average 21 points with the two-hit game. He went from .044 to .065. — Dan Santaromita (NBC Sports Chicago).

  • Joe Giglio (NJ.com*): MLB rumors: Could ex-Yankees manager Joe Girardi replace Cubs’ Joe Maddon? Bob Nightengale and Jon Heyman have gone around the bend. “It seems crazy...” Yes. Yes, it does.
  • Jesse Rogers (ESPN*): Cubs in control of playoff bid, but questions persist. “...it’s not as if the Cubs have shown any signs of slowing down under Maddon.”
  • Tony Andracki (NBC Sports Chicago*): The value of rest: How Cubs get a leg up on competition by doing less. “...rest leads to results...”
  • Sahadev Sharma (The Athletic {$}): Through the injuries and oddities, Cubs keep finding ways to win (and have fun doing so). “If you’re trying to encourage young people to want to watch us, you have to have marketable guys that people want to tune in for,” said Maddon.
  • Sam Fels (Wrigleyville-Baseball Prospectus): When Jon Lester’s arm goes up, your bat goes shut. “...the Cubs might have the one ace in their playoff rotation it’s generally thought you need.”
  • Eric Chesterton (Cut Four): Cole Hamels receives ovation from Phillies fans. “Philadelphia fans gave Hamels the ovation they never had the chance to following that 2015 no-hitter...”
  • Sam Fels (Wrigleyville-Baseball Prospectus): Hamels is waiting for Vizzini. “...let’s call this one a victory, so far, for Hickey and Hamels. And the Cubs.”
  • Brendan Miller (Cubs Insider): Mike Montgomery’s whiff rate was his highest of the season by far. “I’m a ground ball pitcher, but I think in today’s game you’re going to need swings and misses,” Montgomery told The Athletic {$} early in August.
  • Sahadev Sharma (The Athletic {$}): Montgomery found a ‘new’ pitch over the past month and now he’s ready for October. “...without [the cutter] being what it was, the curveball becomes average,” he said.
  • Carrie Muskat (MLB.com*): Cubs fall in 10 with bats held to Javier Baez’s blast. “Jose Quintana struck out seven and helped himself by hitting a pair of singles for his first career multi-hit game.”
  • John Fineran (Chicago Sun-Times* {$}): Cubs left-hander Drew Smyly has 13-pitch rehab stint. “I felt very good — pain-free, which is always my first concern,” Smyly said. He struck out the side, explains Evan Altman (Cubs Insider).
  • Mark Gonzales (Chicago Tribune* {$}): Struggling reliever Brandon Kintzler trying to settle in with Cubs. “It’s been almost a month since the trade. I’ve just got to be myself,” he said.
  • Phil Miller (Star-Tribune*): Twins trade Bobby Wilson to Cubs for Chris Gimenez. “It’s more out of respect for who he is,” said Derek Falvey, the Twins chief baseball officer.
  • Chicago Tribune: Javier Baez on umpire Joe West: ‘They need to start talking to us like humans. Because they’re not’. Also ESPN: [VIDEO].
  • Mark Gonzales (Chicago Tribune* {$}): Ben Zobrist: Batting average is an ‘outdated’ statistic. “I think we need to get rid of it at some point. The other stats we have are more telling about how your offensive season has been,” he said.
  • NBC Sports Chicago*: Kris Bryant and Addison Russell are set to rejoin the Cubs [VIDEO].
  • Mike Rosenbaum (MLB.com*): Nico Hoerner among top prospects to watch in AFL. “The Stanford product hit .327/.450/.571 in 14 games across three levels...”

Food for thought:

Thanks for reading/watching.