#Cubs and Hammel face Braves

Jason Hammel will start Friday when the Cubs open a three-game series against the Braves in Atlanta. Here’s the lineup:

Fowler CF

Heyward RF

Bryant LF

Rizzo 1B

Zobrist 2B

Baez 3B

Montero C

Russell SS

Hammel P

The Braves have lost six of their last seven games, while the Cubs have won 12 of their last 15. Atlanta has hit 23 home runs in 59 games; Kris Bryant has 14 homers while Anthony Rizzo has 13.

The Cubs starting pitchers are a combined 34-12 with a 2.30 ERA, and opposing baters are hitting .198 against them.

*In Draft news, the Cubs selected three collegiate right-handed pitchers with their selections in rounds three, four and five. In the third round, the Cubs took right-handed pitcher Thomas Hatch. In the fourth round, they picked Tyson Miller of Cal Baptist and and in the fifth round, Bailey Clark of Duke.

17 Comments

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Rounds 3 thru 8, 5 RH Pitchers and 1 Catcher.

Cubs and Yankees will announce a trade for Chapman sometime in the next 24 hours.

Aloha Cubs Talk, wow I was thinking a reunion between Maddon and Miller would take place. That would be interesting, I wonder what the FO gives up for the “rental?” At least with Miller you get a couple of years. Take care now. Mahalo.

Hope not & doubt was intended for cubs talk.

Hope not & doubt it.

Not even close man…. You should reread that article bc it’s been revised to say it was false

Did I miss the press release on this?

Aloha jasper! Thank you for the kind words on the other post and thank you for the draft updates! Sometimes hard to scroll through all the picks just to get to the Cubs. What do you think about Alcantara for Coghlan? I am sure some other prospects will be traded, especially if a LHP is available by the trade deadline. Take care now! Mahalo!

Made sense Kg. Cubs needed a LH Bat for depth, Coughlan fits in perfectly.
Alcantara was just not getting what the Cubs are looking for.

Aloha jasper- btw, here is another game whereby an opposing pitcher with high era is stomping the lineup again? Against the elite pitchers the team has done well but these other pitchers with high 5,6,7+ era’s the team has a lot of difficulty with them. I wonder in part if it is that they are so “amped-up” ready to “tee-off” on these pitchers because they think they are sub-par, that it takes them away from their approach/patience at the plate? Just like in the past I brought up the RISP stat and concern there, this year lower-end starting pitching has done a job on the Cubs lineup. I hope they can bust out of this funk! Mahalo!

Well K.g. the Cubs are doing fine without my input, but some things in ( my opinion ) are going downhill and I expect Management to take some corrective action soon.
(1) It was last year at this time Fowler went into a bit of a slump. Cubs don’t need #1 & #2 hitters slumping at the same time.
(2) Montero is a very good Catcher, but he has only thrown out 2 base thieves and allowed 22 SB’s. Granted its not all his fault, but they are running at will on him. It needs corrected. Not so bad if he’s hitting, but he also is in a slump.
(3) How long do you continue to hit Heyward #2, he is in a season long slump. He has struck out 46 times in 195 At Bats. His current OBP is a poor .323. Hit into 5 DP’s. Twice this year he has made two outs in one inning. He may have, but I have yet see him try to bunt for a hit or move a runner over. Does that sound like a #2 Hitter?
(4) Richard is awful, taking up a Roster space. Grimm has been terrible. What is going on with Grimm? Used to much, not used enough?
This is just the obvious, there is more I can get into. I see so much that some don’t and would call it nit picking.
Again, I could never be a Manager or in Management. Little things upset me way to much, because I know, until corrected, it only gets worse.

Also forget to add, will we see second half struggles from Hammel?

Aloha jasper- I hear you. I was amazed at both my father and coach as they had the demeanor for the game, their players and all that they had to interact with. I am sure internally both went through stress and in college unlike the pros, you do not have all the infrastructure that one has with a MLB franchise. That is not to take away what a Maddon and his coaches do and go through but a lot of decisions he does not have to make as someone else does that for them. My father and coach not only had to do the recruiting, field a team, raise funds, worry about financial means/scholarships for players they wanted and monitor grades grades…This as well working on budgets with the college/university because sports were not to be the priority at an academic institution. We have not even discussed schedules, practices, logistics for game-day, flight-arrangements etc.. And most of this fell on the head-coach. Of they had an assistant, possibly a 2nd/3rd if the budget allowed. So, when you bring up the subject of being a manager I totally get it. My wife gets irritated with me when I am frustrated/upset as she reminds me it is only a game and to appreciate where this team is today. I know you, I, Doug, Petrey, jhosk, Kenly, White, Judson, Bruce, TomNTexas, DelwareCub, Isabelle, CubsTalk and all the rest love what this current team is doing! Like you I see areas where work is needed. And to be honest with a team that went through a lot of change recently, personnel-wise over the past couple of years, only so much time to play together, it is important that they iron-out as much as they can before the post-season. Remember the Mets who the Cubs swept during the regular season and limped into the play-offs. They easily handle both the Dodgers and our Cubbies.

Your list:
#1: Yes, I remember well last year when Fowler cooled off and had a tough 1-month+. He may need to be dropped in the lineup, just to shake things up. I did not expect him to keep up at a .350 pace. It would be great if he can stay constantly at .285-300+. Last year he finished at .250.
#2: I like Montero. I think he has been very good for the team and as a veteran presence. I agree with you that his throwing out of runners is not good and teams know this. Ross is having a much better effect here but gosh, he is 39yrs old. Earlier in the season I thought if Montero went down for a much longer period and with Schwarber out, why not go after Lucroy who is a great pitch-framer, defensive catcher, etc? I know it was a pipe-dream and the Brewers would probably not want to do that with a rival. But this is a concern as you say as well as Montero not hitting. He is 7yrs Ross’ junior and his average right now is below Ross. I just do not see Contreras coming up yet…Jhosk said that Schwarber’s rehab is going well, could be back at the end of season but I am sure not behind the plate.
#3: Heyward. This is a tough situation. We are now past the 1/3 mark in the season. In the past, Jason had 3yrs in a row with a rising BA, ending last year with a .293 and 160 hits, highest in his young career. He ko’d only 90 times all of last year and is already at 46ko’s right now. I did not expect him to hit .300 this year but thought if he at his new home could hit .275 to go along with his stellar defense. He is having a little bit of a “Lester-2015” year in that there are high-expectations with him coming in and the contract he signed. Maybe put him in say #7 slot, take pressure off of him like they did with Addison last year. Also, if needed could they “platoon” him sometimes with say a Szczur in Right? Start Szczur off and hope his bat provides and bring in Jason in the later innings for defense. Not all the time but just to help Heyward through this period.
#4: Richard. He did an admirable job last year when brought on mid-season. But one cannot let “feelings” get in the way. He is just not getting lefties out. Grimm? I am with you on that. Shucks, Ramirez was let go by the Brewers, do you bring him back? The Giants had Jeremy Affeldt. Sure he had a couple of tough years but overall he was a tremendous setup man in his 7yrs. The Cubs are going to have to think about getting a longer term solution like Affeldt who was on all 3 WS teams! Of course the Yankees have 3 guys but I like Miller because of his play on/off the field. Nothing against the other 2 but the Cubs/FO has worked really hard to build a cohesive team that is like a family, a well-behaved one at that! I think Miller would fit in well and not only be reunited with Maddon but Warren as well. Miller will cost though and what are the Cubs willing to part with? Sure he is $9mil/yr but you have him under control through the 2018 season! Cheaper now than later. He is having a Kershaw-like year too with the ko/bb ratio!

Its tough because the organization has less “prospects” because of winning forfeiting picks this year due to the Lackey and Heyward signings. At some point if the Cubs are to have a long run like the Giants/Cardinals they will have to balance out trades for established players, which prospects go and which current players go in order to get more prospects! I hate to be selfish but I would not mind a “3 WS in 5yr period” like the team in my backyard, just saying! Take care and hope tomorrow they can rebound against them pesky Braves! Mahalo!

Aloha jasper, I like Coghlan and hope he can get back to form at plate. I did like his play in the field. Probably was depressing going from the Cubs to out here. I am sure he is happy to be back. Mahalo!

Aloha k.g. I want to clarify something I said about Schwarber. A Cubs` fan at the Phillies game Monday suggested that Schwarber could be available by the time of the playoffs. I was repeating something he said, and I regret doing so, as I do not see that a realistic. Given the serious nature of Kyle`s knee injury, it would be imprudent for him to attempt to come back that soon, and not something any member of his medical team would recommend, I`ve concluded.That fan in Philadelphia was ill-informed, and I was wrong to repeat his observation. (Speaking of Schwarber, one of the Braves` tv broadcasters last night brought up that rumor that the Cubs may want to trade for Andrew Miller. His partner wondered if possibly Schwarber would be a player the Yankees would want in return. Then they both concluded they did not see that as realistic. I certainly concur. It`s my impression Kyle has reached a level of popularity with management, teammates, and fans, I would think he`s close to “untouchable.” Any thoughts on this matter from anyone are welcome.

Aloha jhosk, thanks for your reply, I am sorry I did not pay better attention to what you had said. I like Miller but he will cost a pretty penny. I know the Giants want his services too! Take care now. Mahalo!

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