Remember the glory days of the ‘Aughts when the Cubs were loaded with power pitchers and leading the league in strikeouts nearly every year (2001-2008)? This last road trip made the 2012 Cubs feel like they were facing those Cubs. 71 Strikeouts in 7 games will generally not lead to good things, and the 37 in the three games in Milwaukee were especially bad. Dale Sveum, any comment?
“Like we talked about earlier, we have to start grinding at-bats and learn how to foul balls off and get to another pitch,” manager Dale Sveum said. “There are just too many uncontested strikeouts where we’re not battling and fouling balls of. We have to get much, much better at that.”
And even though the Cubs hit two home runs yesterday, they’re still not hitting enough to make the strikeouts easier to digest.
“They go hand in hand, but you have to have both hands,” Sveum said. “You can’t have no home runs and a bunch of strikeouts. If you’re going to strike out you had better have slugging percentage otherwise you’re not going to score runs.”
And on the frustrations of having a AAA team:
‘‘There’s a lot of young things
going on right now that are starting to be glaring things. We’re
going down looking. We’re swinging at pitches way out of the zone early, and then we get good pitches to hit and take them.
‘‘What’s going on right now mentally is kind of strange from a hitting standpoint. We’re aggressive when we shouldn’t be, and we’re passive when we should be aggres-
sive. . . . We’ve got to address all these problems in the winter to produce some runs.’’
I think by “address all these problems” he means “get a new roster”.
I mentioned the two home runs hit yesterday, one of which was hit by Bryan LaHair. It was his first since July 4.
“Well, it’s been a while, I know that,” he said. “I’m just battling right now and working hard behind the scenes and trying to get things figured out. I’ve been having good at-bats and I’m starting to hit the ball hard again.”
Has it been tough on LaHair having to ride the pine since Brett Jackson got called up?
“It’s definitely tough,” he said. “It’s not something that I’m used to and it’s definitely not something I like. I have a role now and I’m just trying to do the best job I can possibly do and learn that role. It’s a role I haven’t learned before so I’m trying to learn that role.”
LaHair no longer looks to be a good fit with the Cubs and it remains uncertain where he might end up next season. Being accepting of his current role is his only option now.
“I’m trying to show people every day what I can do,” he said. “I go out every day and I work hard to get back on track. I’m just trying to do the best job I can.”
The floors of the front office ran red yesterday, as the Cubs fired 6 scouts.
The pro scouts terminated were Tom Bourque, Joe Housey, Tom Shafer and Richie Zisk, a two-time American League All-Star outfielder. The Cubs listed 16 scouts on the pro side when the season began.
On the amateur scouting side, regional crosschecker Charlie Aliano was released of his duties, as was area scout Rick Schroeder, who was responsible for seven states, all of them in the Midwest. The Cubs had 26 amateur scouts listed at the beginning of the season.
Vaya con Dios, scouts we’ve never heard of.