Deep Thoughts: Miguel Cabrera on pace for …

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There’s a lot of projecting Miguel Cabrera’s season forward going on today. Saw Buster Olney doing it on Twitter. They’re doing it at High Heat Stats today too. If you play the on-pace game, Cabrera could have, like, 200 RBI.

Odds don’t favor that, of course. He’s likely to slump at some point. Well, maybe. He kind of looks like he’s NEVER going to slump, to be honst. He’s just impossible to pitch to these days. If you haven’t had a chance to watch many Tigers games lately make a point to see some, because it’s not often you see someone toying with pitchers the way Cabrera has been lately.

But I am torn about this whole on-pace thing. On the one hand, I’d like to see him challenge a record of some kind because history is fun. And the record most in need of challenging in my view is Hack Wilson’s RBI record. That needs refreshing, I think, if for no other reason than that I selfishly and subjectively think a player better than Hack Wilson should hold that record.

On the other hand, I’m not sure what I’d do if a historic season for Cabrera turned into months of people talking about how what Cabrera is doing proves that RBI is a be-all, end-all statistic when it clearly isn’t in terms of individual player evaluation. Man, that would make the old school crowd insufferable.

Maybe we can compromise and he can challenge .400. Batting average is flawed too, but not nearly as much as RBI. I think I could live with overheated batting average talk better.

Yu Darvish suffers setback during rehab start

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Cubs starter Yu Darvish suffered a setback during Sunday’s rehab start with Low-A South Bend, The Athletic’s Jon Greenberg reports. Darvish threw just 19 pitches in the first inning and felt fine. However, when he took the mound to warm up ahead of the second inning, Darvish “felt something” in his injured right elbow. He exited the game to undergo an MRI.

Darvish’s condition isn’t yet known, but it’s obviously bad news. Darvish signed a six-year, $126 million contract in February and has made just eight starts this season. He owns a 4.95 ERA with 49 strikeouts and 21 walks in 40 innings and hasn’t pitched since May 20.

Darvish said he hopes to return before the end of the regular season to help the team. Cubs president of baseball operations Theo Epstein is realistic about the situation. He said, “It’s a process. We’ll see how he feels. It’s been a long road back, so there’s no point in rushing it now. We probably have one chance given where we are on the calendar to get this right, so that’s the priority.”

Mike Montgomery has pitched out of the rotation in Darvish’s place but he is also currently on the disabled list. Tyler Chatwood, with a 5.22 ERA and 93 walks in 101 2/3 innings, was booted from the rotation at the end of July after the Cubs acquired Cole Hamels. The Cubs, entering Sunday 20 games over .500 and fewer than five games ahead of the Cardinals and Brewers in the NL Central, need some reliability at the back of the rotation.