Yesterday was one of those games that really exemplifies why I love baseball (Outcome aside)
One of my favorite parts of the game is that you can often see something — at any time — that you’ve never seen before.
First off in yesterday’s game, you had the no-hitter. The Cubs hadn’t been no-hit since 1965 — that’s 7,921 games.
Then you have the fact that it’s Cole Hamels pitching. Hamels very likely made his final start with the Phillies, and the Cubs have been long-rumored to be interested in acquiring him.
How crazy would it be to have Hamels be traded to the very team he no-hit in his previous start? Pretty crazy; but crazy things happen all the time in baseball.
Jayson Stark has a pretty good recap on some of the more bizarre aspects of yesterday’s game.
I had never seen a no-hitter before yesterday, and I was beginning to think I’d never see one. It came at a bad time for Cubs fans.
The Cubs haven’t been at their best coming out of the gates to start the second half of the season. And compounding that frustration is that they’ve been facing teams they theoretically should be manhandling.
As bad as it felt to have the Cubs be no-hit yesterday, it’s only one loss in the standings. The season is not over. Not even close.
One positive thing, I guess at least we can now prove that Len Kasper does not have the ability to jinx a no-hitter.
So, now what?
Does yesterday’s performance by Hamels really change anything? It shouldn’t. Teams should know what they’re getting from a guy who is in his 10th MLB season.
But sometimes teams can get emotional. Who knows, maybe it will make some team pay a little extra for his services.
I don’t expect the Cubs to be one of those teams. If they do end up trading for Hamels, I don’t think Saturday’s no-hitter will cause them to up the ante at all.
In terms of other needs for the Cubs, Hamels’ domination does hammer home, once again, that this Cubs team has a struggling offense. Another bat may be their biggest need right now. Probably someone who can play short or second base.
The price for Price
The Tigers likely will be looking for a pitcher to slot into their 2016 rotation in exchange for David Price, writes Jon Morosi.
Even though the Cubs are interested in Price, Morosi says, they could be at a disadvantage because they don’t have much young pitching talent to offer.
Morosi also reports that the Tigers may be willing to allow a 48-hour window for an acquiring team to try and negotiate a contract extension — something I’m sure the Cubs would be interested in. However, agreeing to an extension may cost a higher prospect going back to Detroit.
* Top pick from this summer’s draft Ian Happ made his debut with the South Bend Cubs yesterday and went 1-for-2 with two walks. Happ batted third behind another highly touted prospect, shorstop Gleyber Torres, and started in center field. Keep on rolling, Happ. (Torres also had a nice game, collecting three hits.)
* While we may be hoping the Cubs can make a deal for an extra bat to help boost the offense, one possible solution could be within the organization right now. Javier Baez last night in Arizona went 2-for-3 with a double, walk and two runs scored. We’ll probably see Baez head to Triple-A sometime next week, putting him one step closer to Chicago. Baez has had a rough year after not making the big club out of Spring Training, suffering the death of his sister, and then breaking his finger. He could be the spark the Cubs need right now.
* Kyle Schwarber is scheduled to start at catcher today. It looks like, for now, Maddon is sticking with his plan to catch David Ross with Jon Lester and Jake Arrieta. Same goes for his plan to keep Schwarber out of the outfield.