With the promotion of Nico Hoerner, the Cubs now have 11 (!) first-round picks on the 40-man (and active) roster. In addition to Hoerner: Cole Hamels, Danny Hultzen, Javier Baez, Kris Bryant, Addison Russell, Albert Almora Jr., Nicholas Castellanos, Ian Happ, Jason Heyward and Kyle Schwarber.
Pretty impressive collection of talent. The Cubs’ 40-man roster breaks down this way:
International signings: 6
1st-round draft: 11
2nd through 10th round: 16
11th through 20th round: 4
21st round or later: 3
The three from the 21st round or later are Derek Holland (25th), Brandon Kintzler (40th) and Alec Mills (22nd). Two of those three have had solid, if unspectacular, MLB careers.
- MORE NICO: Hoerner is only the second Cubs position player in the last 30 years to make his major league debut the year of or the year after he was drafted. The other is 2014 first-round pick Kyle Schwarber, who made his big league debut in 2015. Schwarber is also the last Cub to jump from Double-A to the majors, as Hoerner did. Also, Hoerner is the first Cubs middle infiedler to make his major league debut the year of or the year after he was drafted since Roger Metzger, who was drafted by the Cubs in the first round of the 1969 Draft and made his big league debut on June 16, 1970 in San Francisco at shortstop, Metzger’s only career game as a Cub. Lastly, Hoerner is the 23rd player in franchise history to make his major league debut the year of or the year after he was drafted (H/T: Ed Hartig)
- WARBIRD: Schwarber in his last 33 games since August 2: .276/.367/.667 (29-for-105) with six doubles, one triple, 11 homers and 28 RBI. He has gone no more than three games in a row without a home run in this stretch.
- NICK THE STICK: Nicholas Castellanos hit his 25th home run of the season Monday. It was his 14th in 36 games with the Cubs. He needs one more to tie his career high, 26, set in 2017. Overall, in 29 of his first 36 games as a Cub he is batting .347/.373/.707 (52-for-150) with 12 doubles, 14 homers and 27 RBI. Since joining the Cubs August 1, Castellanos’ 52 hits are tied for most in the N.L. with Anthony Rendon.
Here are today’s particulars.
Jose Quintana, LHP vs. Ronald Bolanos, RHP
Over his last four starts, Jose Quintana has alternated good with bad. The last one was bad, so... you’d think he’s due for a good one.
On the other hand, he did not throw well against the Padres July 20 at Wrigley Field. They smashed three home runs off him, hit by Hunter Renfroe, Manny Machado and Fernando Tatis Jr. Tatis is out for the rest of the season. Hopefully, Q can hold down the rest of the Padres lineup tonight.
Ronald Bolanos was signed out of Cuba by the Padres in 2016. He has made one major-league start, last Tuesday against the Diamondbacks. He allowed two runs in the first inning — and then, only three hits and no runs over the next five.
Before his callup he had not pitched above Double-A. This year combined between Advanced-A and Double-A, he posted a 3.66 ERA and 1.235 WHIP in 25 appearances (23 starts), with a K rate of 9.8 per nine innings.
Per Fangraphs, he throws mostly fastballs and sliders and can hit 95 with his fastball.
He has obviously never faced the Cubs or anyone on the current roster.
Today’s game is on NBC Sports Chicago Plus. It’s also on MLB Network (outside the Cubs and Padres market territories).
SB Nation game preview
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The 2019 Game Thread procedure will be the same as the one used in previous years. Here’s how it works.
You’ll find the game preview posted separately on the front page, two hours before game time (90 minutes for some early day games following night games).
At the same time, a StoryStream containing the preview will also post on the front page. The First Pitch Thread and all the overflow threads will be published in that stream, as well as the recap. The recap will also live on the front page as a separate post, and at the time I write the recap I will rename the stream “Cubs vs. (Team) (Day of Week) Game Threads” so you can go back and find every thread related to that particular game.
You will also be able to find the preview, First Pitch Thread, all the overflow threads and recap in the box marked “Chicago Cubs Game Threads” at the bottom of the front page (you can also find them in this section link). They will also appear in the game’s StoryStream as noted above.
The First Pitch thread will post at five minutes before game time, then an overflow thread at one hour, two hours and 2:45 after the scheduled game time.
Discuss amongst yourselves.