Cubs Ruffle St Louis’s Feathers

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The best pitcher in the game got rocked yesterday by the Chicago Cubs. Adam Wainwright and the St Louis Cardinals took a beating 6-5.

In truth, the score should have been wider but this was the Cubs and they were playing the Cardinals. Anthony Rizzo blasted a home run and drove in two as he led the charge. The Cubs looked good and either the Cardinals took it easy or underestimated Chicago’s talent, and I can see just how easy that would be, or the Northsiders proved finally that they’ve got the talent to compete.

“He’s made a very conscious effort of trying to control the strike zone,” Rick Renteria said of Rizzo, who batted .233 last season. “With two strikes especially, he’s been really battling. He’s just trying to not do too much. He choked up and just tried to put the barrel on the ball — he’s a very strong man. If he puts the barrel on the ball with a decent swing, he can hit the ball out of the ballpark.”

I’ll tell you as well that once the great weather finally gets here and the Ivy turns to green, we’re going to see Anthony Rizzo put the barrel on the ball a whole lot more.

“It’s definitely going to create a buzz around our division and the league, knowing that the Cubs have those power arms,” said Rizzo, who started things off with a two-run homer in the first, then walked four times. “We’ve just got to score runs and let our pitching do the rest.”

The month of April had a lot of growing pains but like I said yesterday, if the Cubs can take this series, it’ll turn a corner for the team.

Naysayers will squawk and let them, but guys like Starlin Castro, who went 3-4 yesterday, love to play. Once they get into their rhythm, there’s no telling what kind of players these guys will be.

So, the Cubs have Emilio Bonifacio, Anthony Rizzo and Starlin Castro taking the lead but I have to say that Junior Lake is disappointing me. Either pitchers have caught on to what he’s all about or he just continues to swing at anything. He needs work and patience.

—Mark

Cubs Series Could End Up Like A Certain Hitchcock Film

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This is the most important series of the season today for the Chicago Cubs. Not only is it against their division rivals, but the Cardinals are a team to beat this season. Did I just say that? Yes, I did. The Cubs have a lot to prove in this series and if they can pull off the win, then the momentum can shift in the Central Division.

The Milwaukee Brewers can be beat. On paper, they’re eh? I think it’s fluky the way they’ve started out in April and Ryan Braun’s dominance may or may not falter. I still think he should give back that MVP award, but that’s my own opinion.

Travis Wood gets the ball today and arguably he’s been the best pitcher in the rotation for the Cubs. The problem is he’s taking on Adam Wainwright who in my opinion is the best pitcher in the game today. The Cubs are coming off a big win against the Reds and can carry that into today’s matchup.

Their records are on the opposite ends of the spectrum. The Cardinals boast a 15-14 record while the Cubs are taking it on the chin with a not so great tally of 9-17. If you’re a betting person, I’m not going to tell you how to spend your money.

Adam Wainwright is 5-1 and Travis Wood is 1-3. David vs Goliath. But, here’s the offensive weapons the Cubs possess:

Starlin Castro- The kid’s on a tear. He’s got five doubles and fourteen RBI’s, at that pace he’s All Star material. Thank you Starlin for coming back to us and making my son Darcy believe in you again. I don’t need a fantasy tracker to know when you’re up. Darcy tells me every time.

Anthony Rizzo- He leads the team in runs with 16 and an OBP of .407

These two guys have to take charge and stop the Cardinals attack this weekend. If the Cubs can win the series, then the Central Division could be a little bit different come September.

Then again, I’ve gone to Vegas and spent less than twenty bucks.

Believe it.

–Mark

Adam Wainwright The Greatest Pitcher?

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Cubs fans will probably massacre me for this post, but here goes. Yesterday I was looking through some statistics and one of the great bar room questions is, “Who is the greatest pitcher in the game today?”

There are many great and fantastic pitchers in the game today. Everybody’s got their favourite pitcher and they could be right with their opinions. In this day and age with the advanced usage of Sabremetrics and other complex statistics, I’m basing my opinion on old school tactics.

Is it Clayton Kershaw? What about Stephen Strasburg, Cliff Lee, Max Sherzer(One of my favourites) Yu Darvish and Justin Verlander? All those guys are amazing throwers. What makes them the pitchers they are and what determines their greatness?

Is it WHIP’S What about WINS or STRIKOUTS and ERA’S. All these statistics have been used to determine a pitcher’s performance, but let’s go back to school, to the beginning and the basics.

The best way to determine “Who is the greatest pitcher?” is to look at plain old hard work and adversity.

My pick is St. Louis Cardinal ace Adam Wainwright. That’s right folks in Cub’s Nation. I said it and I stand by it. Saying that name comes close to a Yankee fan genuflecting before the World Series champion Boston Red Sox. However, you have to admit that it’s great giving credit where credit is due.

So, this is how I came to this decision:

Complete Games. Good old fashioned, slug it out complete games.

Adam led the league with five last year. He led the league in Innings Pitched. He also faced the most batters (TBF) He finished fifth with total pitches thrown. The most common statistic and probably best statistic that determines how great a pitcher is comes down to plain old WINS. Adam finished second to Matt Scherzer with 19.

That’s a hard working pitcher. Where did that hard working pitcher end up? The World Series. Runner up to the Cy Young. Sure they didn’t win, and believe me, there was a little bit of satisfaction that they didn’t, but giving credit where credit is due is what this post is all about. To me, the greatest pitcher in the game today is Adam Wainwright.

Agree with me or not, he’s a force to be reckoned with. If you’re into baseball fantasy pools then he’s the guy to pick up. A future Hall of Famer.

Believe it.

—Mark