The Cubs have lost six of seven, a little cause for concern, albeit still just 75 games into a 162 game season. What’s been the issue? Where’s the offense gone? 9-11 through the last 20 games, isn’t exactly stunning. Coming off an all-important sweep of the Pirates, a sweep at the hands of the Cardinals, and losing three of four to the Marlins (the Marlins?) puts the Cubs at 48-26, still an impressive 22 games above .500, but what’s missing?
ESPN put it best, even with losing 11 of 20 the Cubs still have the best record in baseball and are nine games ahead of the Cardinals in the Central. What’s to worry? The issue only sits with the bullpen for me, not having that reliability is killing games down the stretch. When the offense isn’t exactly stellar (can Dexter Fowler come back already?), it’s on guys like Travis Wood, Clayton Richard (sad I know) and Pedro Strop to finish off games, not blow them.
The offense itself didn’t show up multiple times over the week, scoring two or fewer runs on four occasions, including all three games against St. Louis having only one game with 2+ runs.
It helps a slump to have fun, and with a series against the Reds twice in the next two weeks, the Cubs should bust out quickly. Don’t look for the team to struggle for long, and it’s best for the team to struggle and still maintain a huge lead in the standings.
Arrieta’s on the mound tonight, coming back from his second loss of the season, and we all remember his last game against the Reds.