Saturday night baseball didn’t turn out to be a good thing for the Cubs. They lost 6-0 to the Cardinals. With that, the Cubs are guaranteed to be under .500 at the break. They have one more game to play before that break. Hopefully, the four days off that everyone other than Kris Bryant and Craig Kimbrel (who should be showing up on milk cartons by now), will help them recharge their batteries. Baseball isn’t like some of the other sports and there isn’t a massive advantage for dropping back a few draft spots. Accordingly, the Cubs might as well go ahead and be as competitive as they can be in the second half.
The Cubs are now less than three weeks from the trade deadline. At eight games out of first place and tied for third, it is more than clear that they won’t be contenders at the deadline. So the Cubs will be sellers. Those trades will pave the way for some guys to get some extra playing time and to possibly reward some organizational guys with some major league time. I’ll be most interested in watching guys like Keegan Thompson and Justin Steele get longer looks in the second half. I’m interested to see if they can continue to be effective when they are a little further exposed to opposing hitters.
It’s been a long time since we’ve truly watched a Cubs team just playing out the string, 2014 was the last year of no meaningful baseball in September. I don’t miss that, to be sure. But the last time the Cubs were down, they made a number of really great trades that ended up bringing in some very key parts to the championship team. Hopefully, this trade deadline ends up producing multiple players who will ultimately be key players on future Cubs teams.
With an afternoon game after a night game, let’s turn the page quickly and go to the numbers. As you’ll recall, the Heroes and Goats are determined by WPA (Win Probability Added) and are not in any way subjective. Many days WPA will not tell the story of what happened, but often it can give at least a glimpse to who rose to the occasion in a high-leverage moment or who didn’t get the job done in that moment. And now, let’s get to the results.
Game 90, July 10: Cardinals 6 at Cubs 0 (44-46)
- Superhero: Kris Bryant (.041). 1-3, BB
- Hero: Keegan Thomspon (.008). 2IP (8 batters), H, BB, 0R, K
- Sidekick: Rafael Ortega (.004). 0-0, BB
- Billy Goat: Adam Morgan (-.134). ⅓ IP (3 batters), 2H, 0BB, 2R, 0K
- Goat: Ian Happ (-.113). 0-4, 2K, DP
- Kid: Patrick Wisdom (-.091). 0-4, 2K
WPA Play of the Game: With a runner on second and one out, the Cardinals led the Cubs 2-0 in the fifth inning when Tommy Edman faced Adam Morgan. Edman homered, extending the lead to four. (.121)
*Cubs Play of the Game: With runners on first and third and two outs in the fourth inning and the Cardinals leading 1-0, Zach Davies coaxed a pop off from Dylan Carlson to end the thread. (.050)
Who was the Cubs Player of the Game?
This poll is closed
Heroes and Goats Cumulative Standings: (Top 3/Bottom 3)
- Kris Bryant 20
- Craig Kimbrel 18
- Patrick Wisdom 11
- Rex Brothers/Eric Sogard/PJ Higgins -9.5
- Willson Contreras -10.5
- Jake Arrieta -14
Up Next: The final game before the All-Star break is Sunday afternoon. The Cubs will send Trevor Williams to the mound, making his first start in weeks. Trevor is 3-2 despite a 5.51 ERA. He’s been much better when pitching at home. He’ll face Adam Wainwright. Adam is 7-5 with a 3.58 ERA.