Rise of the Role Players

Heading into the All-Star break, the Cubs were two games under .500 and 5.5 games behind first place. How did the defending World Series champions end up in such a place? It wasn’t the two big boppers—Kris Bryant and Anthony Rizzo had .928 and .894 OPS marks, respectively. Rather, it was a combination of inconsistent […]

MLB: NLDS-St. Louis Cardinals at Chicago Cubs

Russell Rests as Cubs Consider Arms Race

It wasn’t quite on the order of the sword of Damocles—the Cubs are too happy right now to feel anything approaching anxiety—but it was certainly an open question heading into the workout day on Thursday: What was Addison Russell’s status? The last anyone had heard of his health was on Tuesday night, manager Joe Maddon was […]

MLB: Milwaukee Brewers at Chicago Cubs

Getting Deep, Going Deeper

I’m a historian by trade—or, more correctly, by bachelor’s degree. Before I started writing for BP Wrigleyville, I was much more likely to pump out 3,000 footnoted words on Andre Dawson and collusion than an accessible analysis of Addison Russell’s changed approach at the plate. Given that background, I have a natural tendency to revisit things […]