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Fundamentals, Waveland & Waivers

By bullpenbrian at 08.24.2011 Leave a comment.

Since Mike Quade took over the Cubs last August he’s (80-86) .481.

Quite honestly, the record isn’t all that bad. But it’s the way the Cubs are losing that’s the problem.

If there’s one glaring weakness it’s the Cubs’ overall poor fundamental play. Routine fielding errors, the lack of situational hitting and bad base running decisions have plagued the Cubs all season long.

Those are things that fall on the coaching staff, Quade in particular, which is why it’s widely accepted the Cubs’ new GM will part ways with Quade following the season.

Good organizations consider such play inexcusable despite injuries, lack of talent or otherwise. Every team has excuses, the good ones simply shy away from using them.

If Ricketts intends to right the ship, finding a GM who stresses and holds his managers accountable, at all levels, for fundamental play should be of top priority.

Signing high-priced draft picks, free agents and seasoned veterans is of little use if collectively they can’t play sound, smart baseball.

That said, being fundamentally sound isn’t the most glamorous game. It doesn’t jump off the score sheet at you, win fantasy leagues or sell tickets in the offseason. But it certainly works in the standings come season’s end.

The San Antonio Spurs bore basketball fans to tears with fundamentals, but they haven’t missed the playoff in 14 years and have won four championships in the process. Baseball isn’t so different when you get down to it.

No one mistaken the Giants as a glamour group when they won the World Series last year. In fact, they were self described misfits, albeit, ones that pitched, hit and fielded the ball better than most.

Doing that consistently over the course of a 162 games season puts any club in contention. Right now, the Cubs are far from it.

+++ 

Are there words to describe just how ridiculously hot Aramis is at the plate?

He collected the first 5-hit game of his career Tuesday night while extending his hitting streak to 12-games.

During the streak he’s hitting .563 including 3 2B, 4 HR, 5 walks, 9 runs scored and 14 RBI!

His 23 home runs since May 23 is second only to Pujols’ 24, and nine of his last 12 games have been of the multi-hit variety.

You’d think the guy was playing like a $16M dollar option was on the line for 2012.

+++

Uh-Ga-La!

Dan Uggla’s monster blast against Ryan Dempster Monday night marked the fifth time an opponent has homered onto Waveland Avenue this season.

The Cubs have exactly zero homeruns this year onto Waveland. Carlos Pena holds the lone street shot for Chicago connecting off Jordan Zimmermann onto Sheffield Avenue on August 11.

+++

Very interesting day on the waiver wire:

-Arizona transferred Jason Marquis to the 60-day DL.
-Baltimore recalled former Cub Jake Fox.
-Another former Cub, Felix Pie, was DFA by Baltimore.
-The Giants activated Carlos Beltran off the 15-day DL.
-Philadelphia placed Cole Hamels on the 15-day DL.
-And perhaps most interestingly, Toronto traded fan favorites Aaron Hill & John McDonald to
Arizona for Kelly Johnson.

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