Nyjer Morgan was asked how the Brewers are gonna do without Prince Fielder. This stuck out:
“It’s probably going to be a little more speedy this year,’’ Morgan said. “You can see that we’re going to have to rely on trying to steal bags and stuff like that, and not worrying about trying to hit those gaps all the time.
The Brewers led the NL in homers (and slugging percentage) last season. Prince Fielder hit 38 homers last year. The Brewers’ new third baseman, Aramis Ramirez, hit 26. I know you can’t play simply swapsies with this sort of thing, but if you had swapped Fielder for Aramis Ramirez then, they still would have been tied for second in homers in the league.
Losing Prince Fielder is going to change some things for Milwaukee. But it’s not gonna transform the team from one that hits for power to the 1985 St. Louis Cardinals or something. Even if that would be better for Nyjer Morgan’s game.
Cubs closer Brandon Morrow has been out since the All-Star break with a bone bruise and biceps inflammation. In recent days there had been hope that he would be activated in the season’s final two weeks in order to be ready for the playoffs, but that’s not happening: Theo Epstein just said that Morrow is done for the season.
It’s not the first time good expectations for Morrow’s recovery were not met. When he was placed on the DL back in July manager Joe Maddon said he didn’t anticipate Morrow being on the DL for much more than the minimum 10 days. Two months later and here we are.
Morrow, 34, had an excellent season until the arm trouble started, saving 22 games with a 1.47 ERA and a 31/9 K/BB ratio in 30.2 innings. Once he went out the closer’s duties fell to Pedro Strop. Now Strop too is out for at least the rest of the regular season and likely more due to a hamstring strain he suffered last week while running the bases.
Bullpens become a lot more important in the postseason. The Cubs’ bullpen is becoming thinner.