Chicago Cubs 2019 Season

Anyone know the reason/advantage behind those axe handle bats? Contreras just started using one and I think KB is still using his.
 
Houston, Texas
Anyone know the reason/advantage behind those axe handle bats? Contreras just started using one and I think KB is still using his.
From what they said in the TV, the axe handle get the hands in a better spot when starting the swing. Here is what the makers say:

Engineered for the biomechanics and ergonomics of your swing, the axe handle supports your most natural and efficient movement through the hitting zone. When compared to the old-school round knob in a comprehensive study conducted by UCLA’s Vijay Gupta, Ph.D., using elite college baseball players, the axe handle was superior in every category.

looks pretty interesting, I'll say that.
 
Geneseo, IL
I'm really looking forward to another four years of Darvish after this season. And great job of self-scouting by the Cubs letting La Stella go and replacing him with DesCalso.
 
I'm really looking forward to another four years of Darvish after this season. And great job of self-scouting by the Cubs letting La Stella go and replacing him with DesCalso.
Yeah. The last two offseasons have been not good. Cishek was a nice signing and picking up the option on Hamels was a good move. Extending Hendricks and Bote on the cheap was a no brainer. Beyond that, every other offseason decision from the last two years has blown up in the Cubs’ faces.
 
Can someone please give me one good reason Descalso hasn't been DFA'ed? CarGo has cooled too since a good start with the Cubs, but I'll give him a little more time before complaining.

I know Happ's had a not so great AAA year, but I think he'd be more valuable to this club than Descalso. Or if you really want him to get more seasoning, why not give Robel Garcia a shot, minus is rediculously high K rate?
 
The Cubs are 20-25 over their last 45 games. That’s a huge chunk of the season to be muddling along under .500.

Fortunately for them, over the same stretch of time, the Brewers are 20-20 and the Cardinals are 18-22.

Seems like the first Central team that could pull off a decent stretch of baseball - something like 12-2 or 15-3 - could run away with the division.
 
Likes: IanKEvans2
The Cubs are 20-25 over their last 45 games. That’s a huge chunk of the season to be muddling along under .500.

Fortunately for them, over the same stretch of time, the Brewers are 20-20 and the Cardinals are 18-22.

Seems like the first Central team that could pull off a decent stretch of baseball - something like 12-2 or 15-3 - could run away with the division.
With Hendricks back and Alzolay looking like the real deal, even with Hamels probably out a month or two at minimum, Lester, Hendricks, Q, Alzolay, and Darvish are probably about a top 10 rotation still. Kimbrel should help win at least 3/4 games along the way, and we probably get at least another lefty reliever. Would like to see Happ or Garcia instead of Descalso. Heyward's resurgence has been great too. This isn't the best roster in baseball, but it doesnt need to be.

Lots of time left to make moves in the standings, which we're still tied for first in the central.
 
Likes: IanKEvans2
Geneseo, IL
With Hendricks back and Alzolay looking like the real deal, even with Hamels probably out a month or two at minimum, Lester, Hendricks, Q, Alzolay, and Darvish are probably about a top 10 rotation still. Kimbrel should help win at least 3/4 games along the way, and we probably get at least another lefty reliever. Would like to see Happ or Garcia instead of Descalso. Heyward's resurgence has been great too. This isn't the best roster in baseball, but it doesnt need to be.

Lots of time left to make moves in the standings, which we're still tied for first in the central.
I would pump the brakes on Alzolay until he gets 10 starts or so.
 
Geneseo, IL
I'm not sure what the Cubs are playing for this season, but it ain't no World Series title.
 
First half summary:

The Cubs started 2-9, losing their first three series. They scored a great 6.89 runs a game but were giving up a staggering 7.89 runs a game largely due to a ton of walks and a bullpen that couldn’t get anyone at all out.

The Cubs then went 22-7 over their next 10 series, winning 9 and splitting 1. Their offense averaged a more reasonable 4.97 runs per game. League average is 4.75. While that’s a top 5 offense, it was the pitching that carried them, allowing only 2.79 runs a game. This was largely due to some amazing starting pitching, including 17 quality starts in those 29 games.

Then the great malaise set in starting with the Reds series on May 14. The Cubs finished the first half going 23-29, 3-8-4 over 15 series. They actually outscored their opponents during this time, showing some of this was bad luck. They scored 4.87 runs per game, nearly identical to the 4.97 they were scoring during their nice streak. It was the pitching that imploded, giving up 4.77 runs per game.

That pitching implosion was largely due to the starting pitching falling apart. Hendricks and Hamels continued to be great, but both got hurt. Darvish went from awful to slightly less awful. But Lester and Quintana have both collapsed. Since May 14, Quintana and Lester have both made 10 starts. Quintana has pitched 54.2 innings and has a 4.77 ERA and Lester has pitched 55.2 innings with a 5.50 ERA.

Ironically most of the regulars in the bullpen have been pretty good during this down stretch. Strop (2.70), Cishek (2.66), Kintzler (2.04), Ryan (3.06) and Edwards (2.61) have done the job when healthy.

The Cubs’ only offseason free agent relief pick up Brach has been DFA-worthy with a 9.47 ERA over his last 19 appearances and the fact that Maddon keeps rolling him out there is... strange.

Chatwood (5.47) and Montgomery (5.59) have both been bad, but have also been so inconsistently used that it’s hard to really criticize them. Since May 14, Chatwood went a 13 day period where he only pitched 2 innings and then went another 16 day period where he only pitched 4. Similarly, Montgomery went a 21 day stretch where he only pitched 3 innings.