Cubs: Ian Happ makes the quarterfinals of the Players League

Ian Happ, Chicago Cubs (Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images)
Ian Happ, Chicago Cubs (Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images) /
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The Chicago Cubs’ Ian Happ made it Players League quarterfinals, winning 10 out of 11 games. The last three spots need help.

The Chicago Cubs’ Ian Happ made it. He made the Players League quarterfinals by winning 10 out of 11 games, a tall task. Happ could be six through eight, considering how it plays out. Tommy Kahnle of the New York Yankees is on the outside looking in at the ninth spot. Gavin Lux of the Los Angeles Dodgers and Lucas Giolito of the Chicago White are seventh and eighth, respectively.

Happ started 9-9, then reeled off 10 in a row. Do you know how he celebrated? With a ‘W’ flag and singing ‘Go Cubs Go.’ He then defeated Joey Gallo of the Texas Rangers 6-5, and Luke Jackson of the Atlanta Braves, 4-2.

He then fell to Trevor May of the Minnesota Twins, 3-2. Happ clinched a playoff spot while May had just been eliminated from it. The cruel world we live in. But a win is a win.

And he got his help from his former teammate, Carl Edwards Jr.of the Seattle Mariners. Needless to say, he had a big sixth inning and beat Lux. It’s up to Lux to qualify–but he doesn’t have a dog in the fight.

Giolito takes on Amir Garrett of the Reds, while Kahnle takes on Lance McCullers Jr.of the Astros. Happ holds the tiebreaker over Lux, 78 runs to 77 runs. Both Giolito and Kahnle have more runs than Happ. If Giolito beats Garrett? He’s in the playoffs. If Kahnle beats McCullers, he’s in. If they both win, Lux is eliminated, and Happ falls to the eighth seed. I’ll tell you what, I didn’t see the excitement of the Players League.

So what’s next? The weekend’s winners will be televised. Best-of-quarterfinals will advance to the best-of-three semifinal round. I’ll be honest; I like it–even if there’s no baseball. The Player League first season will conclude on Sunday.

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Hunter Pence of the Giants said good things about the Players League.

"“It makes you feel like you’re playing baseball,” veteran Giants outfielder Pence said during Monday’s slate of games. “The game’s amazing, and there’s a connection and a bond that we’ve built with all the players in this league. It’s just really cool to be a part of.” h/t Adam Berry, MLB.com"