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Fantasy Baseball: A fun night in Wrigley shows Cubs’ offense has pop

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For the third time in four years, the Chicago Cubs are going nowhere. They have a record of 20-46. Fangraphs says their current playoff chance is 0.1%. Memories of this 2016 title are getting hazier and hazier.

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Rub dub dub, same old Cubs

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But that doesn’t mean that Wrigley Field can’t be magical on some days or even some evenings. And Thursday was one of those days.

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The Cubs had 15 runs and 23 hits against the Reds on Thursday night, enough to outlast Cincinnati in a 15-7 keg draw. Considering how low points this season has been, I applaud these rare bursts of attack. Crooked numbers are good for the soul, even if they can mess up your scorecard. When the wind stops, we are all winners.

Patrick Wisdom was the best in the box, knocking down two homers, driving six runs and even stealing a base. He is an interesting modern player. A .232/.315/.475 slash might not sound like much, and he has 100 outs, most of them in the NL. But if you analyze his OPS through park adjustment and a seasonal lens, his OPS+ is 115, 15% better than the average hitter. Redefine what it means to be a positive offensive factor in today’s game, Wisdom lies in this.

I have a soft spot for late players who come into the game with low expectations and no pedigree. Wisdom has never been advertised. His 28th season last year, at age 29, came out of nowhere. I am very happy to see how he maintains this breakthrough and performs at about the same level. He’s far from a perfect player, but useful. He keeps my fantasy lists.

June 30, 2022;  Chicago, Illinois, USA;  Chicago Cubs third baseman Patrick Wisdom (16) greets third base coach Willie Harris (33) after a Grand Slam home run against the Cincinnati Reds in the second inning at Wrigley Field.  Required Credit: David Banks - USA TODAY Sports TPX PHOTO OF THE DAY
Senior Patrick Wisdom (right) hosted a Thursday night party to which all of Chicago was invited. (David Banks – USA TODAY Sports)

Christopher Morel the revival was also good for my soul. The other day, I was wondering — more of a concern — if Morel was losing steam as he battled a sea of ​​strikeouts and dropped to ninth in the Chicago rankings. For one night it’s not a problem. He threw five hits at the Reds, including a homer and a double. He scored three runs, knocked out two. He returned to playable slash 0.283/0.342/0.494.

Last night’s romp highlights that the 2022 Cubs were not sunk by their attack. It’s not Bryant and Rizzo Cubs, but these guys know how to score. Chicago is above average in most key metrics – 14th in runs, 10th in average, 5th in OBP, 13th in slugging. It doesn’t make them Yankees or Dodgers, but these guys will show some numbers. Jan Gomez was the only starter on Thursday’s roster with an OPS+ below 100, which is the league average.

Admittedly, the ruler is now easier on the eyes when Jonathan Villar gone. And no one is missing Jason Hayward ground ball tour. There are plenty of decent sticks in the order, starting with Wilson Contreras (best fantasy catcher), Jan Happ (so underrated, hit .327 in June with almost as many passes as strikeouts) Rafael Ortega (0.292 June, slightly early).

Okay, then there’s the pitch. It’s a rub with the Cubs. Chicago is ranked 26th in the ERA, 25th in the WHIP. They hit 106 home runs, just two fewer than Washington. If you want a souvenir baseball, take a seat in the Wrigley stands. except closer David Robertson (nine saves, 1.86 ERA) and random moments from Keegan Thompson as well as Justin Steelthis is a staff to be avoided.

Cincinnati, here’s a kiss, we’ve chosen you to end this list. Although the Reds never entered Thursday’s game – by the end of the fourth round, Chicago had a seven-round lead – Joey Votto still won the night. He engaged a young fan in front of one of his at-bats and then returned to that fan after Votto smashed a giant home run in the sixth inning. Play this clip a few times, it’s good for your soul.

Chicago hosts Boston this weekend, two famous franchises merge to form Wrigley. I love these matches, my two favorite cities. If it was a hockey game, you would get two Original 6 teams.

Boston is the playoff draw. Chicago won’t be there. Hell, their hockey clubs are going to have to rebuild too. But I know where my TV will be locked for the next three days. Go where it’s fun.

Maybe I’ll keep a scorecard too.


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