The Chicago Cubs finally slayed the 108 year old curse Wednesday night defeating Cleveland 8-7 in extra innings to win the World Series in seven games.
— MLB (@MLB) November 3, 2016
All of this comes after a remarkable seven-game set that saw the Cubs come back from a 3-1 series deficit and win in spite of perhaps one of the worst bullpen managerial displays in World Series history.
Joe Maddon, who’s heralded as one of the best manager in all of baseball – which he is – almost was the curse himself in the final two games of this series. Maddon’s use of his bullpen, notably closer Aroldis Chapman was almost criminal and certainly almost cost the Cubs a chance at glory last night.
Pitching Chapman in game six when you have a 7-2 lead was inexcusable especially with a winner take all game-seven looming. It was made worse when Maddon paraded him out there not just the single out in the seventh but all of the eighth and one out in the ninth. Granted the lefty only threw 20 pitches that night but was also coming not long after Maddon worked Chapman for the final eight outs in game five.
Chapman’s overuse in many ways could’ve been attributed to him giving up the lead in the ninth last night when a platoon player in Rajai Davis lined one out of Progressive sending the Cleveland crowd into a frenzy after being down at one point 5-1 in the top of the fifth.
But Maddon’s use of Chapman wasn’t his only blunder in game seven.
How about taking out Kyle Hendricks after just 4. 2 innings and just over 60 pitchers thrown in the fifth? Sure you’re replacing him with Jon Lester but it’s not like Hendricks was getting lit up, he allowed one earned run and was getting Cleveland batters to ground out left and right. Not to mention Maddon perhaps left Lester warming up entirely too long before ultimately inserting him into the game.
Look I understand when it comes to the World Series you’re not necessarily pitching for tomorrow, but Maddon certainly took this to an entirely new level. The leash he had on his starters were entirely too short while the over use with his bullpen arms would’ve left Dusty Baker scratching his head.
But you know what? None of this really matters now because the Cubs are World Champions. So I’ll shut up now.