The Chicago Cubs are crossing their fingers that Jason Heyward can break out of his horrid slump. Heyward has had a rough season thus far hitting .231 with an on-base percentage of .321. Heyward’s line drive percentage (29%) is the highest of his career and his strikeout ratio (19.1 percent) which is his highest since 2012.
Cubs manager Joe Maddon dropped Heyward in the batting order in a move he is hoping will help turn things around for him.
“Just give him a little break out of that 2-hole and see if we can get him going in the right direction on a more consistent basis,” Maddon said on Monday.”We talked about it. He was fine with it.”
“Just rearrange the deck chairs and see how it plays,” Maddon said. “A week before the All-Star break, you can look at it, evaluate it. It’ll look different when we come back. Just get a feel for it right now.”
Heyward did seem fine with it and also seemed upbeat regarding the move.
“Joe wants to mix it up and continue to do things to help us as a group,” Heyward said. “I’m not really thinking about that. Just trying to help the team win.”
The Cubs are due to get some players back from the disabled list, including Dexter Fowler. Chicago is 5-9 since Fowler went down with injury. Fowler tested his hamstring on Monday with some agility drills.
“It’s a lot better,” Fowler said. “I picked up the intensity. It felt good. Hopefully it’s not long.”
Fowler is likely to be named to the All-Star game, something both Maddon and Fowler commented on with Maddon saying that if he is ready to play on Tuesday then he’ll play in the All-Star Game.
“Coincidence more than anything,” Maddon said. “We’re not trying to push for him to play in the All-Star Game. This is all conjecture. You don’t want the timing to interfere with what you would have wanted anyway.”
Fowler wants to play in the game but doesn’t know how the week will play out.
“I don’t know the future,” Fowler said. “You want to be cautious with it. I haven’t had any setbacks. It’s getting better fast.”
Cubs Investigating Fan Who Allegedly Made White Supremacy Gesture
The Chicago Cubs are investigating an incident that occurred during the broadcast of a game against the Miami Marlins which showed a fan who flashed a hand sign that is sometimes associated with white power, an upside-down OK signal, behind commentator Doug Glanville.
The Cubs are trying to locate the fan and possibly ban him from games, according to an official team announcement on Wednesday.
“An individual seated behind Mr. Glanville used what appears to be an offensive hand gesture that is associated with racism,” Cubs President of Business Operations Crane Kenney said in a statement.
“Such ignorant and repulsive behavior is not tolerated at Wrigley Field. We are reviewing the incident thoroughly because no one should be subjected to this type of offensive behavior.”
“Any derogatory conduct should be reported immediately to our ballpark staff. Any individual behaving in this manner will not only be removed from the ballpark, but will be permanently banned from Wrigley Field.”
MLB Investigating Racist Social Media Messages Sent to Cubs’ Carl Edwards Jr.
Major League Baseball is investigating racial messages sent, via social media, to Chicago Cubs relief pitcher Carl Edwards Jr. prior to his demotion to the Triple-A Iowa Cubs back on April 6th.
According to The Athletic’s Patrick Mooney, the messages have caught the attention of both the Cubs and the MLB Players Association, leading to the launch of the investigation.
Mooney had been a solid bullpen option during the last few seasons, but had a nightmare start to the 2019 season posting a terrible 32.40 ERA in just 1.2 innings of work over four appearances.
Chicago Cubs Signs Big Name Free Agent
Over the weekend, the Chicago Cubs announced that they have signed MLB free agent and Japanese Phenom Yu Darvish from free agency according to multiple sources.
Before joining Major League Baseball, Darvish was playing in the Nippon Professional Baseball League with the Hokkaido Nippon-Ham Fighters down in Japan. After spending six years with the team, many MLB scouts tapped him as being one of the top Major League prospects in several years.
In 2012, Darvish signed with the Texas Rangers. Yu Darvish played with the Rangers four full seasons and half of the 2017 season with the Texas Rangers and the Los Angeles Angels. In his five year MLB career, he has a 56-43 record, as a starting pitcher, 1,021 strikeouts, and a 3.42 ERA.
Now, Darvish is going to start the 2018 season playing for the one of the most historic teams in baseball history… The Chicago Bears.
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