It took a few days but we’re finally able to watch some Chicago Cubs baseball. So much for weather changes, right? Either way, it’s going to be a tough week for our boys.
What a wild weekend it was for Joe Maddon and the now third-place Chicago Cubs. This team has pulled off some remarkable comebacks over the years, but Saturday took the cake. In case you missed it, the Cubs were down by eight-plus runs late in the game.
Infielder Javier Baez helped lead the charge, tying things up at 10 with a bases-loaded clearing double. Baez emerged as one of the top hitters in the National League last week, hammering four homers and driving in 10 RBI.
He provided some much-needed offense as Anthony Rizzo watched on from the disabled list. Now, Rizzo is back and is looking to get his own display of power going.
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But will Anthony be the one stepping up for the Cubs this week? It’s a possibility. Rizzo was set as my series leader against the Milwaukee Brewers. The big guy loves hitting in that ballpark.
This week, as we all know, Chicago will end their first homestand of the year against the St. Louis Cardinals.
That means taking on Dexter Fowler; their former leadoff man who left a gap at the top of their order. Still love him regardless of his choice of colors.
Which bat steps up?
While Javier took off against the Pittsburgh Pirates and Atlanta Braves, one Cub is still looking to get things going. Young catcher Willson Contreras provided some pop for the Cubbies over Cactus League play but has been somewhat quiet to begin the year.
In 52 at-bats, Contreras has driven in only three RBI behind 15 hits and scored five runs himself with a hitting line of .288/.362/.785. If anyone out of this lineup is hoping to have themselves a Javy-like week, it’s this slugger right here.
And what better time to take off with the Cardinals in town? I mean, lighting up the scoreboard with your biggest rival in town is more than enough motivation to continue an offensive slaughter.
Cishek will continue to shine
Meanwhile, Steve Cishek has been lights out in his first seven appearances for the Cubs in 2018. I wouldn’t necessarily consider him a Cub who needs to step up, rather than someone who is going to keep it up.
Cishek, 31 and former Cardinal, has yielded only one earned run in 7 2/3 innings. To add to his stat line, only four batters have been able to silence him while three were issued a free pass and six struck out.
Steve has been a solid addition to this bullpen which has been the early highlight thus far. Hopefully, some of the starters will begin to feed off this as well.
So, before we close out the first homestand of the season, let’s be sure nothing but W’s fly high above Wrigley Field. Let’s go.