Weekly Wrap Up 

This has been a very busy week for the Northsiders. Cy Young winner, Rookie  of the Year winner, and Manager of the Year winner. It’s been a great week. The team made some moves this week, they claimed  Jack Leathersich off of waivers from the Mets. Leathersich went 0-1 with a 2.31 ERA in 17 relief appearances for the Mets last season, which was his first in the Major Leagues. He struck out 14 batters in 11 2/3 innings and did not allow a run in 14 of his 17 innings before having Tommy John surgery at the end of July.

The Cubs signed a former New York Yankee, Andury Acevedo to a one year deal. Acevedo spent the last four seasons pitching in the Yankees system and enjoyed a breakthrough in 2015, rising from Class A Advanced Tampa, where he was a Florida State League midseason All-Star, all the way to Triple-A Scranton Wilkes Barre. He had a 2.31 ERA and one save in 10 relief innings.

  Last season, Acevedo was 3-4 with three saves and a 2.59 ERA. The 6-foot-4, 235-pounder was originally signed by Pittsburgh as an infielder in 2007 before he converted to a relief pitcher upon signing with the Yankees in 2012.

The Cubs selected contracts from Pierce Johnson (pitcher), Wilson Contreras (catcher),  Jeimer Candelario (infielder), and Dan Vogelbach (first base) all from Double A Tennessee. The team added them to the 40 man roster which prevents them from being selected by another team in next month’s Rule 5 Draft. All four players were among six players listed on MLB.com’s Top 30 Cubs Prospects.

The Esurance MLB Awards have been announced and the Cubs took home four awards. Jake Arrieta won for Best Starting Pitcher and Best Breakout Player, Kris Bryant won Best Rookie, and a fan won Best Fan Catch. Watch the Catch N Chug here.

Cubs added their third relief pitcher this week with a trade involving the Texas Rangers. The Cubs traded 19 year old infielder Frandy Delarosa for right handed Spencer Patton.

 Born and raised in Illinois, Patton who is 27, was drafted by the Royals in 2011, and he has appeared in 36 games with the Rangers all in relief. He also appeared in 26 games for Triple-A Round Rock in ’15 and picked up 11 saves, 36 strikeouts  over 27 innings. Texas acquired him in July 2014 from the Royals.

Topps picked it’s All-Star Rookies this week and the Cubs have rookie sensations Kris Bryant, Kyle Schwarber, and Addison Russell, which lead with the most players from a team. The New York Mets had Michael Conforto and Noah Syndergaard repersented and the Miami Marlins had J.T. Realmuto and Justin Bour. This has been a tradition of Topps since 1960.


Arrieta the NL Cy Young Winner 

One of the most prestigious awards given out for baseball is the Cy Young award. It recognizes the best pitchers in the game, one from the American League and the National League. The 2015 NL Cy Young race was one of the best ever in the history of the sport. Zack Greinke of the Dodgers, 19-3, 1.66 ERA, 222.2 innings pitched, 200 strikeouts, and 0.84 WHIP. Fellow teammate Clayton Kershaw went 16-7, 2.13 ERA, 232.2 innings pitched, 301 strikeouts, and a 0.88 WHIP. Those two were just tough alone to see who would win the award, but if you throw Jake Arrieta into the mix, the decision gets even more tough. Arrieta’s stats looked like 22-6, 1.77 ERA, 229 innings pitched, 236 strikeouts, a 0.86 WHIP, and the NL Cy Young Award winner. Before this break out season, Jake was with the Baltimore Orioles and was traded to Chicago for Scott Feldman. Once arriving in Chicago, he was sent to AAA and there was no telling when he would be back up in the majors.

  Jake reccived the honor on Wednesday night. He is the fifth Cubs pitcher to have earned this since Greg Maddux did in 1992. Jake had an amazing year. Every time he stepped out on the mound he was lights out, no one could hit him. He pitched his first career no hitter against the Dodgers. On Wednesday night Arrieta said, “Everything that we were about, the types of guys we had and the character we had overall, really seeing that play out in an incredible way, was probably the most memorable season in my career.   Individually I was able to do some great things, but winning 97 games as a team, and winning the first playoff game in the organization in 12 years was really special to all of us.” Jake is ready to see what the offseason brings and can’t wait to start pitching again. For now, he is happy to be taking time to spend with his friends and family, also he is relieved that the Cy Young is officially his. Congratulations Jake Arrieta on one of the most historic seasons in all of Major League Baseball and on winning the Cy Young, enjoy every moment of it!

NL Manager of the Year 

As the final out of the 1991 season was made, Harry Caray said, “Sure as God made green apples, someday the Chicago Cubs are going to be in the World Series, and maybe sooner than we think but it requires a veteran manager because this is a veteran team, a mixture of guys who are young but still veterans.” He said that 24 years ago, in those 24 years the Cubs have had 14 managers. The 56th manager of the franchise is Joe Maddon who won the National League Manager of the Year on Tuesday night. Joe took a last place team, the laughing stock of MLB, and  helped make them one of the toughest team around.

  During his introduction press conference, Joe said, “I’m gonna be talking playoffs next year. I’ll tell you that right now. I can’t go to spring training and say anything else. You have to set your goals high, because if you don’t set them high enough you might hit your mark, and that’s not a good thing. We’re gonna talk World Series this year, and I’m gonna believe it. It’s in our future.” He lead the team to its first playoff berth since 2008. That’s right, from a 73-89 team a year before to a NLCS berth his first year with the team. Joe has made baseball fun again in Chicago, from his spirit trips for away games, to turning Wrigley into a petting zoo and a restaurant that severes brunch, and the benching of Starlin Castro are a few of the reasons why he makes the game fun. This is Joe Maddon’s third time winning this honor, 2008, 2011, and now 2015 and hopefully many more to come. Here’s to you Joe for making this year so special! Congratulations!

The Start of Something Amazing. 

In 2010 when you heard the name Kris Bryant you didn’t think much about it. That year Bryant was drafted by the Toronto Blue Jays but didn’t sign and played college ball at University of San Diego. Fast forward to 2013 and the MLB Draft, the Houston Astros had the first pick. Bryant was the most scouted prospect and the Astors went with Mark Appel. The second overall pick was the Chicago Cubs, well you know how the story goes from here. Making his way through the Cubs affiliate teams, Bryant had an amazing year with the Tennessee Smokies and Iowa Cubs hitting 46 long balls. Now one more fast forward to the year 2015. On April 17, 2015, Kris Bryant was making his first MLB debut and that was the start of something amazing. Bryant played in 151 games, scored 87 runs, had 154 hits, 26 home runs, 99 RBIs, and a .275 batting average his rookie year.

  He also just won the 2015 NL Rookie of the Year, no big deal right? He told the  Associated Press, “I think I played with a little bit of a chip on my shoulder this year, and I think it’s good to play that way sometimes. In high school, I kind of got labeled like I didn’t really care about playing just because I was so relaxed out there, but that couldn’t be any further from the truth.” Kris beat out San Fransico Giants Rookie, Matt Duffy who came in second place and in third place was Jung Ho Kang of the Pittsburgh Pirates. This year Bryant didn’t seem like a rookie, he seemed like a seasoned veteran with how well he clicked with this team.  As for us fans, we cannot wait for the 2016 season to get here so we can see what KB has in store for us.

Arrieta in The Cy Young Race


963179_1280x720The Chicago Cubs haven’t had a Cy Young award winner since Greg Maddux in 1992 and since the Baseball Writers’ Association of America launched the award in 1956, they have had only four winners. Jake Arrieta could be number 5.

Look at the unbelievable season he’s had. He went 22-6 with a B_s2oF_UwAEPuGG1.77 ERA, 120th all-time and 16th in the live ball era. It’s the lowest live-ball ERA not to lead the league and his .075 post All-Star break ERA was the lowest in Major League history.

jake-arrieta-mlb-chicago-cubs-detroit-tigers1-850x560Arrieta is up against Zack Greinke and Clayton Kershaw of the Los Angeles Dodgers in the three man race for this year’s Cy Young award. Ironicly, the Cubs’ ace pitched a no-hitter against the Dodgers August 30th and was named the NL pitcher of the Month in August and September.

Jake Arrieta was traded to the Chicago Cubs in 2013 from the Baltimore Orioles for RHP Scott Feldman. He was the first pitcher this season to reach 19 wins and had the most wins in the whole league. In 2014, Arrieta tied for ninth place in the NL Cy Young voting and now he’s a finalist. The winner will be announced Wednesday November 18th. Best of luck, Jake!

Award Season is Upon us 

It’s been a few weeks since the season ended and that means a couple things. Free agency and award season. The Cubs captain, Anthoy Rizzo won the Heart and Hussle Award. Rizzo is the perfect candidate for this because every pitch, every hit, every out, he is apart of it. He plays 110 percent every game. He watched this team turn around from last to being contenders. This season, he joined the 30 for 30 Club. Being hit by 30 pitches and hitting 30 home runs. Having 101 RBIs, 31 HRs, playing in 160 games, and slugging .512. Rizzo made unbelievable grabs and hit massive home runs. This year was a great one for Anthoy, next year will be even better. Congratulations Anthoy for winning the Heart and Hustle Award.

Former Atlanta Braves Pitcher Dead at 29 

Tommy Hanson, 29, has been pronounced dead late Monday night into early Tuesday morning at an Atlanta area hospital. Hanson was fighting for his life while in a coma due to catastrophic organ failure. He was rushed to the hospital on Sunday night with complications breathing.  The cause of the organ failure still remains unknow. Hanson made his Braves debute in 2009 and played with the organization until 2013 until he was traded to L.A. Angels, which is the last time he played in the majors. He spent the last two seasons in the minor leagues for the Chicago White Sox and San Fransico Giants.