Chicago Cubs manager David Ross has another in-game blunder that leads to loss

Chicago Cubs v Los Angeles Dodgers
Chicago Cubs v Los Angeles Dodgers / Kevork Djansezian/GettyImages

It is no secret that the Chicago Cubs have the expectation of contending at the Major League level this season and the recent extensions to second base Nico Hoerner and All-Star left fielder Ian Happ prove that the team is about to embark on a three-year window where they will look to contend for the postseason.

With the new set of expectations, Cubs manager David Ross will be evaluated differently as now the goal is not about player development and communicating the plan to the players, it is about executing the plan on the field. Ross' execution of the plan during games this season has already come into question and Saturday's loss to the Los Angeles Dodgers didn't help his cause either.

Despite having first base open in the bottom of the ninth inning while leading by one, Ross made the decision to have de facto closer, right-handed reliever Michael Fulmer pitch to Dodgers' left-handed hitting outfielder, David Peralta, with the tying run on third base and the winning run on second base. Peralta immediately lined a walk-off single to right field.

Austin Barnes was on deck for the Dodgers and is currently hitless on the season through 17 plate appearances. As to Ross' pondering whether or not the Dodgers would have pinch-hit Will Smith for Barnes, Dodgers' beat writer Fabian Ardaya indicated that it was clear that Smith was not available for Saturday's game.

It was yet the latest example where Ross misread the situation and it resulted in the Cubs losing a game that they should have won. That was not the only situation in the game where Ross misread the situation.

The Cubs are a team where their defense and pitching are going to put them in a position to win games but as part of that, Ross will need to make the right decisions in games that hang in balance. Ross failed to make those right decisions on Saturday and the team missed an opportunity to secure an early season series victory against a team in the Dodgers that is expected to be a World Series contender.