Welcome back to BCB After Dark; the grooviest get-together for night owls, early-risers, new parents and Cubs fans abroad. Welcome back to all you hep cats. And if you’re new, welcome to you too. Please let us know if we can do anything for you today. There are still a few good tables available. Please seat yourself. There’s no cover charge. Bring your own beverage.
BCB After Dark is the place for you to talk baseball, music, movies, or anything else you need to get off your chest, as long as it is within the rules of the site. The late-nighters are encouraged to get the party started, but everyone else is invited to join in as you wake up the next morning and into the afternoon
The Cubs beat the Phillies, 2-1 this evening in a game the Phillies really needed. Except that the Brewers also lost, so the Phillies kept their 1 1⁄2 lead for the final Wild Card spot. The win was also the Cubs’ 68th on the year, which is important when it comes to the poll question later.
Last night I asked about minor league first baseman Matt “Mash” Mervis, who leads all of the minor leagues in RBI this season. He’s gone from an undrafted free agent two years ago (although in a draft of only five rounds) to being on the cusp of the majors. The question was what did you think Mervis was going to do next year? You were mostly optimistic, with 46 percent of the vote saying that Mervis is going to be the Cubs’ everyday first baseman next year. Another 23 percent thought he’d be part of a platoon or rotation at first. So 69 percent of you think he’s going to be a big part of next year’s Cubs team.
I don’t normally do a movie essay on Tuesday night/Wednesday morning, but I promise to have something to say about the 1976 film Silver Streak tomorrow. But I alway have time for jazz, so those of you who skip that can do so now. You won’t hurt my feelings.
Tonight we’ve got one more tribute to tenor saxophonist Pharoah Sanders, whom we lost last week at the age of 81. Here is Sanders and his Quartet playing at a jazz festival in Southwestern France in 2004. With Nat Reeves on bass, Anthony Wonsey on piano and Joe Farnsworth on drums, here’s “Body and Soul.”
Welcome back to those of you who skip the jazz.
Tonight’s question is simple. Will the Cubs lose 90 games this year? Last season the Cubs lost 91 games, so losing fewer than that would be an improvement.
Right now, the Cubs’ record stands at 69-86. To avoid losing 90 games this year, they will have to go 5-3 in the final eight games. They have five home games—two against the Phillies and three versus the Reds, and then another three game in Cincinnati. So the schedule is favorable. It’s always difficult for a losing team to win more games than they lose, but the Cubs are now 33-29 over the second half.
So can the Cubs win five of their final eight games to avoid losing 90 games? Or, and I haven’t checked the forecast, if they get a rainout that doesn’t get made up, they will only need to win four of seven. That counts too.
Of course, we can also debate whether they should want to. Losing more games would likely give the Cubs more ping-pong balls (or whatever system they’re using) in the first ever MLB Draft Lottery. But that’s maybe an argument for another day, although you’re welcome to start it here.
And a reminder. The way I phrased the poll, a “Yes” vote argues that the Cubs will not lose 90 games.
Will the Cubs avoid losing 90 games this year?
This poll is closed
Thank you so very much for stopping by. We hope you’ve been able to relax for a while. Please find a way home safely. Tip your waitstaff. And join us again tomorrow night for another edition of BCB After Dark.