Chicago Cubs News: Atlanta Braves send a reminder, Javier Assad, and more
Atlanta Braves issued an important reminder to the Chicago Cubs
Everyone has a plan until they get punched in the face.
Those words of wisdom from Mike Tyson can be used to express the feeling after the Chicago Cubs got routed by the Atlanta Braves, 8-0, on Friday afternoon.
The game and, likely, this series will serve as an important reminder for the Cubs and their fanbase. The Cubs are not a legitimate World Series threat. There is nothing wrong with that fact nor should it be viewed as a criticism of the team.
Though, there are takeaways that the Cubs may want to have from this series. The most important is that the ability to hit the ball out of the ballpark consistently can flip the script of a game. That was the case on Friday when the Braves put up a seven-spot in the fourth inning after Cubs' starting pitcher Kyle Hendricks was perfect through the first three innings.
With the Cubs at that point of their rebuild where they can benefit from a "bonus season" of post-season play, it is important that the team is aware of the needs that need to be addressed to bring them to the next level. Power on offense and the pitching staff is what is needed.
Javier Assad gets the start for the Chicago Cubs on Saturday
The Chicago Cubs are once again forgoing Drew Smyly in the starting rotation as Javier Assad will get the start for the team on Saturday afternoon against the Braves.
For as much as Keegan Thompson's regression this season was a setback for the Cubs' bullpen, Assad's development has been encouraging. Assad is carrying a 3.24 ERA on the season and the start on Saturday will be an important marker for where is in his Major League career.
Former Chicago Cubs Anthony Rizzo dealing with a concussion
The New York Yankees placed former Chicago Cubs first baseman Anthony Rizzo on the IL this week due to a concussion that he is believed to have suffered in May during a collision at first base with San Diego Padres outfielder Fernando Tatis Jr.
From a stat perspective, it was clear there may have been an underlying concern with Rizzo as the first baseman hit under .200 during the months of June and July with only 1 home run.
Regardless of the stats, the most important thing is that Rizzo is expected to undergo treatment that will allow for a full recovery.
Serious questions should surround the Yankees' training staff and their handling of Rizzo given that it is over two months since the incident and it is only now being treated.