A long weekend paired with back-to-back day games leads to back-to-back bullet point posts. The usual full length writings will return shortly.
- After scoring runs against the Reds bullpen in the eighth and ninth innings on Friday afternoon, the Reds bullpen threw eight scoreless innings Friday and Saturday nights while the Reds were coming from behind to beat the Cubs twice.
- On Sunday afternoon, the Cubs scored 10 runs in five innings against the Reds bullpen.
- Mike Tauchman had the first four-hit game of his MLB career. The last time he had 3+ runs and 3+ RBI in the same game was on August 1 against the Reds. Mike matched a career high with his sixth stolen base. He already had a career high 52 runs scored but extended that personal high to 55.
- With four runs batted in, Ian Happ tied a career high with 72, he also set a new high by scoring his 73rd run. He extended his career high with his 13th stolen base.
- With three more runs batted in, Cody Bellinger has 38 RBI since August 1 and 62 since July 1.
- Nick Madrigal now has a career high with 32 runs scored and also a career high with 25 runs driven in.
The Cubs got a lot of key offensive contributions en route to their 37th game with seven or more runs scored. They are 37-0 in such games. The Cubs avoided losing three straight games for the first time since July 1-3.
Let’s find three key contributions to this win.
- Mike Tauchman with three singles, a double, three runs and three runs batted in with a stolen base.
- Ian Happ with two singles, a double, a walk, four runs batted in, a run and a stolen base.
- Cody Bellinger with a single, a homer, three runs batted in and a run scored.
Game 137, September 3: Cubs 15 at Reds 7 (73-64)
Reminder: Heroes and Goats are determined by WPA scores and are in no way subjective.
- Superhero: Seiya Suzuki (.181). 2-5, 2B, R, 2 K
- Hero: Ian Happ (.166). 3-4, 2B, BB, SF, 4 RBI, R, SB
- Sidekick: Cody Bellinger (.148). 2-5, HR, SF, 3 RBI, R, 2 K
- Billy Goat: Jameson Taillon (-.121). 5⅔ IP, 24 batters, 7 H, 5 R, 7 K, HBP
- Goat: Jeimer Candelario (-.064). 1-4, HR, HBP, RBI, 2 R, 3 K
- Kid: Miguel Amaya/Daniel Palencia (-.036). Amaya: 0-2, BB, R, K; Palencia: 1⅓ IP, 5 batters, H, 2 K (W 5-0)
WPA Play of the Game: The game was tied in the eighth inning and there was a runner on first with no outs. The run expectancy after that runner on first with no outs is .96. Suzuki singled, the runner advanced to third and a seven-run rally followed. (.173)
*Reds Play of the Game: The Cubs were up one when Tyler Stephenson batted with a runner on first with no outs in the second. Stephenson homered giving the Reds a 4-3 lead. (.162)
Who was the Cubs Player of the Game?
This poll is closed
Mike Tauchman (4-6, 2B, 3RBI, 3R, SB, 2K)
Nick Madrigal (2-5, 2B, 2RBI, 2R)
Somebody else (leave your suggestion in the comments)
Yesterday’s Winner: Javier Assad, 110 of 113 votes (Superhero is 92-44)
Rizzo Award Cumulative Standings: (Top 5/Bottom 5)
The award is named for Anthony Rizzo, who finished first in this category three of the first four years it was in existence and four times overall. He also recorded the highest season total ever at +65.5. The point scale is three points for a Superhero down to negative three points for a Billy Goat.
- Cody Bellinger +45
- Ian Happ +21.5
- Adbert Alzolay/Justin Steele +16
- Javier Assad +13
- Dansby Swanson -12.5
- Patrick Wisdom -13
- Drew Smyly -17
- Trey Mancini -20.5
- Jameson Taillon -25
Scoreboard watching: Also in bullet format:
- Brewers lost
- Phillies won
- Diamondbacks lost
- Marlins won (fourth straight)
- Giants lost (third straight)
- Reds lost
The standings are as such. The Brewers lead the central by 3½ games over the Cubs. The Phillies hold the first Wild Card by 2½ games over the Cubs. The Diamondbacks, Marlins and Giants all have identical records and share the third Wild Card position, three games behind the Cubs. The Reds technically fall to sixth in the Wild Card race, less than a percentage point behind the other three teams.
The Phillies head to San Diego to start a series on Monday. The Brewers head to Pittsburgh. The Reds host the Mariners. The Diamondbacks head to Colorado. The only one of the potential contenders off on Monday are the Marlins, who host the Dodgers starting Tuesday.
Up Next: The Cubs are back home at Wrigley Field for an afternoon game to kick off a three game series against the Giants, one of three teams tied with a record of 70-67. The Giants have lost six out of 10. The Cubs ace Justin Steele (15-3, 2.69, 144 IP) starts the opener. He’s 5-0 with a 3.12 ERA in 40⅓ innings over his last seven starts. Last time out, he was a winner, throwing six innings, allowing six hits, one walk and no runs. He struck out eight.
26-year-old righty Logan Webb (9-11, 3.49, 180⅓ IP) starts for the Giants. Webb was a fourth round pick by the Giants in 2018 (118th pick overall). He’s 1-3 with a 3.52 ERA in 46 innings over his last seven starts. He’s lost each of his last two starts, allowing seven earned runs over 11⅓ innings.
This feels like a winnable game.