Despite coming away with the win on Wednesday, the Chicago Cubs bullpen is running on fumes and that fact rang out loud and clear in the late innings.
At the end of the day, it doesn’t really matter how you get your wins – as long as you get them. That rings particularly true with just days left in the regular season and a division title on the line.
The Chicago Cubs blew a four-run lead, then walked off against the Pittsburgh Pirates Wednesday night, securing their fourth consecutive postseason appearance. That had never been accomplished in franchise history – so that’s definitely a nice feather in their proverbial caps.
But there are more than a few fans wondering why such drama was even necessary. Chicago had this game firmly in hand heading into the eighth, leading Pittsburgh by a 6-2 margin. But the bullpen coughed up a pair of runs in both the eighth and ninth innings, necessitating Albert Almora‘s tenth-inning heroics.
Is the bullpen really to blame here? People like to point to the relief corps as the team’s biggest weakness – but that’s hardly been the case in 2018. And, even if it has, I think the blame lies more with the front office and starting rotation than the dance crew under the left field bleachers.