Chicago Cubs: Yu Darvish says #TakeThat to the Kapman

(Photo by Quinn Harris/Getty Images)
(Photo by Quinn Harris/Getty Images) /
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Chicago Cubs
(Photo by Eric Espada/Getty Images) /

Take that!

For starters, it means he’s confident being himself and rocking out with what he knows is right. Darvish doesn’t need a blowhard telling him what pitches to throw when he has a catcher, pitching coach, manager, advanced analytics “geeks,” and his own brain.

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Darvish has had an elite run by several measures during this season. For starters, he is rocking a 176/51 K/BB ratio so far this season. Since June 10, it’s 98/7. And since July 3, it’s a ridiculous 71/2. Per Brendan Miller, his splitter whiff rate is seventh-best ever in the history of baseball, and per Darvish himself, right-handed hitters have a .030/.030/.121 slash line against it this season.

About the only issue he’s had this season is the number of home runs he has given up (30), but that might be a function of the philosophy not to walk guys. Not to mention, it might have something to do with the large, undimpled golf balls MLB is using this season.

In other words, the confidence he’s displaying on social media could very well be directly related to the confidence he’s showing on the hill. Even if the two are unrelated, the exchange in the locker room and on twitter this week showed that Darvish has overcome the rough honeymoon last year and won over a ton of fans. Six thousand likes for Darvish’s initial rebuttal to 208 for Kaplan’s broil-instigating tweet. Take that.

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After his worst outing in nearly two months, the real test of Darvish’s confidence and moxie on the mound will come on Tuesday in New York. Based on his recent attitude and actions, don’t be surprised to see a bounceback effort in the Big Apple. Oh- and don’t expect any walks.