Chicago Cubs: An up-and-down performance so far
This wasn’t a good effort – plain and simple. On the year, the lefty carries a 4.46 ERA – over three-quarters of a run higher than his career average. He’s pitched particularly poorly at Wrigley Field, evidenced by a 5.00 ERA in 10 starts.
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This is a guy who is more than serviceable as a third starter in the postseason – when he’s pitching like he has in most of his career. I’m not saying he’s doing that this season, because he’s not. But he’s absolutely capable of it.
Heading into the All-Star Break, I was fine with what we’d gotten from the former White Sox hurler. A 3.96 ERA, .242 opponent average and, most importantly, he took the ball 18 times. But since the Midsummer Classic, things have been a mess – and that’s putting it mildly.
In five second half start, he’s totaled just 25 2/3 innings, allowing 28 hits – six of which have left the yard.
Granted, those numbers certainly weren’t helped by Tuesday’s showing, but the fact remains the same – the Cubs need more from their prized midseason acquisition from a year ago.
And therein lies the problem.