Taillon and Homers, Taylor Trade, Wick as an Option, Ross’s Optimism, and Other Cubs Bullets

After actually months, I did it. I couldn’t be extra pleased with myself. Many mentioned it could not be executed. My associates judged me. My household chided me. But I made it occur.

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Now it is time to construct again as much as 40 so the cycle can start anew…

  • This is such a easy factor, but it surely’s a captivating have a look at how varied free agent pitchers might see a few of their outcomes change dramatically by advantage of their new residence ballpark:
  • Oof for Carlos Rodon, probably. And in the event you see a large breakout for Michael Lorenzen this yr with the Tigers, you possibly can vaguely keep in mind that there was one thing about shifting from Anaheim to Detroit and his residence run charge. (Of course, the Tigers are lastly altering the form of their anti-Coors ballpark, so possibly this would possibly not apply.)
  • As for our curiosity, it is enjoyable to consider Jameson Taillon wanting higher by the outcomes with the Cubs just by getting out of Yankee Stadium, though I’d level out that Wrigley Field’s residence run park elements swing fairly wildly from yr to yr due to the climate. It’s a little bit of an outlier in that regard.
  • THAT SAID, if Taillon noticed a 16% discount in homers allowed at his residence ballpark in 2023, he would surrender 2 to three fewer homers, which my very-back-of-the-napkin math says can be a couple of 25 level drop in ERA over 177.1 innings (what he threw in 2022).
  • A uncommon intradivisional commerce:
  • Taylor, 31, is a superlative defender in heart area (with a solidly below-average bat), and was fairly clearly a luxurious on a rebuilding Royals staff. As Luis quipped in a textual content to me yesterday: “Hey, somebody’s gotta play the 81 video games Byron Buxton will miss.” As for the return, it is a couple upper-level aid prospects with large league potential, however who had been – as a reference level – unprotected and undrafted within the Rule 5 Draft. So this can be a fairly modest deal that’s unlikely to impression both membership considerably within the long-term, which is why you are seeing division rivals get collectively on it.
  • Rowan Wick, 30, was as soon as seen as a fairly clear back-end aid possibility for the Cubs within the years to come back, however accidents actually restricted him in 2020 and 2021, and his outcomes appeared to degrade alongside together with his well being. In 2022, he was wholesome, however posted a 4.22 ERA and 4.19 FIP, every of which had been barely worse than the league common. Not one thing you possibly can settle for from a back-of-the-bullpen arm.
  • Not that you just’re closing the door on a man who clearly has superb particular person pitches:
  • Wick has performed round with a cutter and/or a slider as a 3rd pitch, particularly the cutter and particularly in opposition to lefties. Last yr, it bought OBLITERATED. So on a day when he did not have the fastball or the curveball, he was just about going to get wrecked. As Brendan factors out, late within the yr, he had much more success as a result of he did have the fastball and curveball working extra usually (and the slider began to provide as it grew to become extra of a sweeper), whereas principally ditching the cutter.
  • Although Wick has a minor league possibility yr remaining, so he would not must make the Opening Day bullpen, I think he’ll if he is wholesome. I can nonetheless see a profitable reliever there – by no means wager in opposition to a man who has a mid-90s four-seam fastball with nice late life – however he’ll must get the knuckle curve again to being a wipeout pitch, and he’ll most likely additionally must have that slider/sweeper in his again pocket as a dependable third pitch. As for the cutter, nicely, for as a lot as it has some good pitch traits, if it would not work, it would not work. Sometimes the batters let you know that.
  • Cubs supervisor David Ross on the optimism he feels for the season forward, however the place he additionally tries to maintain himself in test (Sun-Times):

”I’ve optimism in every thing that I do and have gone in with the very best of expectations each single yr that I’ve had this job,” he mentioned. ”But are these expectations extra lifelike now? Probably so.

”We nonetheless must have plenty of issues go proper. I do not get as excited, possibly, as the followers may with the names we have introduced in as a result of I understand how a lot work we nonetheless must do, the holes we nonetheless have to fill. I’ve discovered a lot yearly as a supervisor — and I’m undoubtedly getting higher — however I’m always , ‘Where are we going to get higher?’ ”

  • It is unquestionably extra lifelike to have excessive(er) expectations this yr than final yr, though I’m glad Ross is being sincere about how a lot has to go proper for the Cubs to compete. Be sincere about that in January, set your self and everybody else as much as perceive the work that has to happen over the subsequent a number of months to even give the staff an opportunity to satisfy these expectations.
  • Take care of younger/highschool pitchers – it is not nearly their arm well being, it is also about their psychological well being:
  • Seems like not the reply you’d wish to hear:
  • One of these items just isn’t like the opposite:
  • I would not even regard myself as a Chip hater, however I do not essentially discover him to be among the many higher play-by-play broadcasters on the market. Also, he hasn’t been with the Cubs in virtually twenty years, so there are simply so many ways in which him becoming a member of the Cardinals just isn’t even remotely an enormous deal.

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