How was your week

Posted: October 7, 2017 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, post season, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

Well it took two wild card games and five games in the NLDS before we finally got two pitchers who controlled the game.

Steven Strasburg no-hit the Chicago Cubs for 5 2/3rds innings and while his counterpart Kyle Hendricks gave up 2 hits and walked 3 batters over his 7 innings of work he kept the Washington nationals off of the scoreboard. Strasburg also pitcher 7 innings and was overpowering striking out 10.

Strasburg’s downfall in the 6th inning was an error by Anthony Rendon to put the lead off man on base. Now it looked as though Strasburg was going to work his way out of the jam. After Hendricks sacrificed the runner to 2nd base Ben Zobrist flew out for the 2nd out of the inning. Kris Bryant came through with the big two out hit for the cubs, a single to right-centerfield to score Javier Baez who reached on the error. Bryant was able to advance to 2nd base on the throw home. Anthony Rizzo then came through with another big two out hit for the Cubs as he singled to rightfield scoring Bryant to give the Cubs what appeared to be and insurmountable 2-0 lead.

After the starters departed Ryan Madson was the first pitcher out of the Nationals bullpen. Jon Jay greeted him with a double to left, but a strikeout and then a ground out to 2nd where Jay advanced to 3rd on put the Cubs in another two out runner in scoring situation. It was Rizzo who cane through again for the Cubs as he doubled to left to drive in Jay and give the Cubs a 3-0 lead.

Now the Cubs bullpen has had some issues throughout the season, but there where none tonight. Carl Edwards Jr. pitched a 1,2,3 8th inning striking out two. Wade Davis closed out the bottom of the 9th with a 1,2,3 innings as well recording one strikeout in his inning of work.

I’m sure there where some Nationals fans worried that Max Scherzer was unavailable for Game 1 and while Strasburg did give up 2 runs they where both unearned and he kept the Nationals in the game.

Kyle Hendricks was a bit of a surprise when he was named the starter for Game 1 as most people expected Jon Lester to make the start. Hendricks proved to be the right choice as he pitched the Cubs to a Game 1 victory.

Now the Cubs and the Nationals both have very good offenses, but they where shut down by quality pitching. Now you have to wonder what Hendricks and Strasburg had going on that the other starters didn’t have in their outings. Even what you say are the best of the best in starting pitcher had their issues.

Now to be fair the Houston Astros got two solid outings from their starting pitchers, Justin Verlander in Game 1 and Dallas Keuchel in Game 2. Verlander pitched 6 innings giving up 2 runs while Keuchel pitched 5 2/3rd innings giving up 1 run. Trevor Bauer also came through for the Cleveland Indians in Game 1 of their series as he pitched 6 2/3rds scoreless innings giving up 2 hits while striking out 8. All three starters gave their teams what they need while picking up a victory, but they weren’t as dominant as Strasburg and Hendricks where last night.

Along with those starts there are starts like Clayton Kershaw of the Los Angeles Dodgers, who did pitch 6 1/3rd innings, but gave up 4 runs. C.C. Sabathia was solid giving up 4 runs with just 2 of them being earned in his 5 1/3rd innings. Chris Sale of the Boston red Sox will probably win the A.L. Cy Young this season, but he had his issues in his first post season start. Sale pitched 5 innings and gave up 7 runs. The Arizona Diamondbacks gave Zack Greinke a big lead in the wild card game and that turned out to be a good thing as Greinke lasted just 3 2/3rd innings giving up 4 runs. Sonny Gray made his post season debut with the Yankees, but lasted just 3 1/3rd innings giving up 3 runs and walking 4. Corey Kluber will probably finish 2nd to Sale in the Cy Young voting was the Indians Game 2 starter to keep him on his regular rest. Kluber pitched 2 2/3rd innings and gave up 6 runs. The Minnesota Twins gave Ervin Santana a lead to start the A.L. wild card game, but he couldn’t hold it as he lasted just 2 innings and gave up 4 runs. The Red Sox got another poor starting effort out of Drew Pomeranz as he managed to pitch just 2 innings giving up 4 runs. Jon Gray made the start for the Colorado Rockies in the wild card game, but lasted just 1 1/3rd innings giving up 4 runs. Tajuan Walker gave up 4 runs in his inning of work for the Diamondbacks in his playoff start. Finally Luis Severino was the starter for the Yankees in their wild card game, but only got one out as the gave up 3 runs before being removed from the game.

Now you have to ask yourself, what is going on here? These are pitchers that will be in contention for post season awards and have had quality seasons for their teams that helped get them into the position their in now. I guess in some cases it could be nerves as some of these pitchers where making their first post season starts. In other cases there are starts where a pitcher doesn’t have his good stuff; so maybe that could account for some of these short outings. Of course the baseball is different this season and the best way to describe it is to say that it is hitter friendly. You can just look at the number of players who’ve set career highs in home runs to know something is going on, but you have to remember that MLB likes offense. Of course there is the old tagline that good pitching beats good hitting and while it did for some teams there where quite a few others where their good pitcher didn’t deliver for them.

The National League has the stage to itself today as the American League series are switching cities. Will get a pair of Game 2’s as the Cubs go with Jon Lester to try to win the first two road games in their series. The Nationals turn to Gio Gonzalez to even things up for them. The second game has Robbie Ray scheduled to start for the Diamondbacks as they look for a split against the Dodgers who are going with Rich Hill as their starter. What kind of starts will these pitchers have?

You can listen to the Sports Time Radio podcast on BlogTalkRadio.com, but don’t forget that you can listen to the podcast any time you choose to at TuneIn.com

Remember that I’m on Twitter @Burketime

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s