Chicago Cubs will deploy a five-man rotation moving forward

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Chicago Cubs
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Chicago Cubs: 39 million reasons to stick with Chatwood

Personally, I was a huge fan of what the metrics suggested could lay in store for Tyler Chatwood when the Cubs signed him this winter. Chicago kicked off the offseason pitching market, inking the right-hander to a three-year, $39 million deal.

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But, to say things haven’t gone as planned would be a drastic understatement. He leads all of baseball with 85 walks in just 94 innings of work. (That works out to an 8.1 BB/9 mark if you’re doing the math at home).

The last time a Cubs hurler walked 100 batters in a single season? You have to go all the way back to 2007, when Carlos Zambrano issued 101 free passes in 216 1/3 innings. If you think that’s bad, just know it equates to a 4.2 BB/9 clip – just less than half of what Chatwood has done.

Giving his team a chance to win

For whatever reason, it seems like the offense comes ready to work when Chatwood pitches. Despite his 5.57 FIP and 1.777 WHIP, the Cubs are 11-8 in his starts. In fact, they’ve won each of his last five outings – despite his walking 22 batters in 25 1/3 innings.

During that stretch, the Chicago bats averaged greater than eight runs per game. So, while you might say he’s keeping the team in ballgames, I’d counter with the fact the offense has bailed him out pretty much every five days for more than a month.