Cubs Nationals Matchup

Cubs start a new series with the top of the league Washington Nationals (WAS).  This won’t be so easy as their last bunch of series.  Let’s take a look at what the betting market thinks (noon snapshot).

DATE 06_26 7:05_PM Jun_26_12:17 CHN WAS
LINEAWAY CHN [ 0.426 ] < 0.413 >
STARTAWAY 0.17(0.520) Eddie_Butler_CHN
LINEHOME WAS [ 0.592 ] < 0.603 >
STARTHOME 3.09(0.647) Gio_Gonzalez_WAS

Butler is a close average pitcher and Gonzalez is top of the league right now.  The Cubs are slightly below the standard away field disadvantage of 0.460 but they have been dropping from a start of 0.426 to 0.413.  We posted Butler’s career and how he tore up AAA for the Iowa Cubs at the beginning of this season, let’s look at Gonzalez’ career.

Year WAA Name_TeamID Pos Rank
2008 -2.6 Gio_Gonzalez_OAK PITCH -082-
2009 -3.3 Gio_Gonzalez_OAK PITCH -037-
2010 4.1 Gio_Gonzalez_OAK PITCH +057+
2011 3.9 Gio_Gonzalez_OAK PITCH +060+
2012 4.9 Gio_Gonzalez_WAS PITCH +027+
2013 2.4 Gio_Gonzalez_WAS PITCH +122+
2014 0.4 Gio_Gonzalez_WAS PITCH XXXXX
2015 0.8 Gio_Gonzalez_WAS PITCH XXXXX
2016 -1.8 Gio_Gonzalez_WAS PITCH -162-
2017 3.1 Gio_Gonzalez_WAS PITCH +021+
Total 11.9

He has had a solid productive career as a pitcher.  Stumbled a bit last season but right now he’s ranked #21 which is very good.  He’ll be tough to hit today.  Here is WAS team status.

BAT PITCH Rs Ra W L UR LR TeamID
76.8 17.0 422 330 45 29 0.9 -3.7 WAS

They’re +15 now mostly on their BAT.  PITCH is above water but they have one of their best starters this year pitching and that’s all that matters.  This is a very good team.  Now let’s take a look at lineups yesterday because I don’t want to wait until game time for the current ones.

WAA Name_TeamID Pos PA 06252017
1.43 Anthony_Rizzo_CHN 1B 328
0.44 Kris_Bryant_CHN RF 313
0.97 Ian_Happ_CHN CF 142
0.61 Addison_Russell_CHN SS 248
-0.57 Miguel_Montero_CHN C 106
-0.50 Tommy_La_Stella_CHN 3B 45
0.73 Javier_Baez_CHN 2B 218
-0.25 Mike_Montgomery_CHN P 10
-0.02 Jon_Jay_CHN LF 152
TOTAL WAA=2.83 PA=1562 WinPct=0.535

Cubs’ lineup still hovering in the 0.520 – 0.540 territory which is why they’re still around a 0.500 team. Rizzo is  their only standout hitter which is why Maddon leads him off. The lead off hitter is guaranteed the most plate appearances per game.

WAA Name_TeamID Pos PA 06252017
1.36 Trea_Turner_WAS SS 292
0.97 Brian_Goodwin_WAS LF 98
4.49 Bryce_Harper_WAS RF 301
3.44 Daniel_Murphy_WAS 2B 301
1.93 Anthony_Rendon_WAS 3B 286
1.85 Adam_Lind_WAS 1B 113
1.01 Michael_Taylor_WAS CF 216
-0.76 Jose_Lobaton_WAS C 74
-0.73 Tanner_Roark_WAS P 30
TOTAL WAA=13.57 PA=1711 WinPct=0.652

This is the kind of WinPct lineup the Yankees had when they swept the Cubs at the beginning of May.  It might be the best lineup in MLB right now.  We’re not set up to make those sorts.  A WAA=+13.57 lineup is a typical end of season lineup for a playoff contender with good hitting.

And finally, here are relief.

TeamID WAA IP WinPct
CHN 5.80 est 255 est 0.600
WAS -2.92 216.6 0.439

I didn’t expect WAS to have such poor relief.  That may be their Achilles heel.  If the Cubs can knock Gonzalez out early they may have a chance.  Butler may not last more than a couple of innings either  We’ll see.

Weekly Cubs status comes around again in two days.  Until then….