Chicago Cubs: Walks continue to plague the bullpen
Despite the walks, the Cubs still have a solid bullpen
Even though the Cubs’ bullpen continues to walk an increased amount of batters, Chicago’s pen remains among the best in the league.
Currently, the Cubs’ bullpen ranks fifth in the majors with a 3.33 ERA. In addition to that, the North Siders’ bullpen has allowed the sixth-fewest earned runs this season while holding opposing hitters to a .212 batting average.
As stated above, there is not a singular cause for the increased amount of walks. One possible explanation could be the tighter race in the NL Central. After running away with the division last season, the Cubs find themselves just a half game ahead of the Brewers entering Sunday. The increased pressure of a tight division race could be a reason for the lofty walk totals.
There is no doubt the increased number of walks is not a good sign for Cubs fans. Walks lead to more runners on base which tend to lead to more runs scored.
Making it work – for now
In the short-term, Chicago continues to work around the free passes. If the Cubs can get on another hot streak like they did in the first week after the All-Star break and put the division out of reach, we may see the walks subside. Unfavorable outcomes may come to fruition should the team not nip this in the bud.
As the season marches closer to October, this problem is getting more and more annoying. Let’s hope a solution is right around the corner because it may be the key to another World Series title.