Cubs

Cubs won't put any innings limits on Jake Arrieta

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Cubs won't put any innings limits on Jake Arrieta

All the Matt Harvey drama in New York has dominated the baseball world over the weekend, but don't expect the same issues to pop up on Chicago's North Side.

Harvey and his super agent Scott Boras are at odds with the Mets about the right-hander's innings limit about two years removed from Tommy John surgery. 

[RELATED - Cubs think Jake Arrieta can actually get even better]

Jake Arrieta isn't coming off a major elbow procedure, but the Cubs are still watching his innings ... even if there is no limit in place.

"I've been trying to keep an eye on Jake, taking him out of some games earlier than he would have liked to been taken out of," Cubs manager Joe Maddon said the day after Arrieta threw 116 pitches over eight shutout innings. 

"And then I just explained to him that we're just trying to build it up for later in the year - 'You're gonna be pitching longer than you have ever.'"

Maddon may be managing Arrieta's innings, but he's thrown at least 90 pitches in every one of his 28 starts this season.

[RELATED - Jake Arrieta redefining dominance as he makes his case for NL Cy Young]

Arrieta has thrown 191 innings this year and is on pace for 231 innings this season (not including any playoffs), a major increase over his previous career high. 

His highest innings total in a season before this year came last season when he pitched 176.2 innings between the majors and five rehab starts in the minor leagues.

Maddon said historically, the protocol is to only increase a pitcher's workload by a jump of 20 percent in innings pitched and once a guy reaches 200, "the gloves come off."

Arrieta has never reached 200 innings so by Maddon's logic, the "gloves" should still be on, but Arrieta is 29 years old, pitching in his ninth professional season and is in ridiculous physical shape. He's shown no signs at all of slowing down, either, having not allowed an earned run in his last 29 innings.

The Cubs didn't put Arrieta on an innings limit to begin the season and it's a completely different situation than the Harvey drama in New York. 

Still, Maddon understands there's plenty to be gleaned from how the Mets are handling Harvey.

[SHOP: Buy a Jake Arrieta jersey]

"If you're ever in that situation, hopefully you're able to really define [an innings limit] in advance so that this kind of thing would never occur," Maddon said. "You want to avoid that at all costs. Especially what they're doing right now - they're playing so well; you don't need any kind of distractions.

"Its a lesson learned for us moving forward and for every other team. You don't want to be put in that situation this time of the year when you're playing this well, with all of this at stake, to have to answer those questions."

Summer of Sammy: Sosa's 26th + 27th homers in 1998

Summer of Sammy: Sosa's 26th + 27th homers in 1998

It's the 20th anniversary of the Summer of Sammy, when Sosa and Mark McGwire went toe-to-toe in one of the most exciting seasons in American sports history chasing after Roger Maris' home run record. All year, we're going to go homer-by-homer on Sosa's 66 longballs, with highlights and info about each. Enjoy.

Another day in June 1998, another multi-homer game for Sammy Sosa.

Slammin' Sammy connected twice off Carlton Loewer in the same game, a solo shot in the first inning and a 2-run shot int he fifth inning. Both were measured at 380 feet.

Still, the Cubs wound up losing the game 9-8 to the Phillies despite Sosa's effort and a total of 3 runs in the bottom of the eighth and ninth innings combined.

Fun fact: A big part of why the Cubs lost this game was Jose Hernandez's defense. He committed 3 errors at third base and shortstop that led to a pair of unearned runs.

A messy night at Wrigley Field ends without a pitch being thrown

A messy night at Wrigley Field ends without a pitch being thrown

The NLCS rematch will have to wait another day.

Mother Nature and the power at Wrigley Field care not for your excitement about a "big series" between the Cubs and Dodgers.

Thunderstorms rolled over the North Side of Chicago, where the Dodgers ended the Cubs' postseason run 8 months ago. 

On top of that, the power at Wrigley Field was not cooperating with the lights down the right field line going out for hours during the rain delay. 

The lights came back on at one point before again going out again roughly a half hour before Monday night's game was officially called. After a delay stretching almost three hours, word finally filtered out just before 10 p.m. the game would be postponed a day.

The Cubs and Dodgers will make the game up as part of a day-night doubleheader Tuesday at Wrigley Field with the first game starting at 12:05 p.m. and the second at the regularly scheduled time of 7:05 p.m. Tyler Chatwood will start the first game for the Cubs with Mike Montgomery slated to go Game 2.

As of 10 p.m. Monday night, the Cubs were unsure what caused the power issue at Wrigley Field but were working on fixing the problem ahead of Tuesday's scheduled doubleheader.

The evening started with the tarp being rolled onto the field by the Cubs grounds crew roughly an hour before scheduled first pitch with a forecast calling for a 100 percent chance of rain.

Only a light rain fell until a downpour began around 8:15 p.m.:

That lasted only about a half hour before the grounds crew came back out around 8:45 p.m. to partially remove the tarp and attempt to get the field ready to play.

The only issue at that point was the light and a sinister forecast.

"It takes 45 minutes to get the field ready to play," said Julian Green, Cubs director of communications. "So once you take that tarp off, you saw them putting the chalk lines down, getting ready.

"We wanted to be ready — even in the face of rain — if the lights came back on, we wanted to make sure we could play baseball, even if it was a limited window of opportunity."

As of 11 p.m., that second bout of rain had yet to materialize, but the lights issue also wasn't corrected and play on the field would've been impossible.

Fans lingered throughout the stadium for nearly three hours before an official conclusion came down. The Cubs kept the same announcement on the right field video board about the weather delay while the left field video board displayed the Brewers-Pirates and other MLB games.

This is the only trip to Chicago the Dodgers make throughout the 2018 season so the two teams and Major League Baseball did all they could to try to get a game in and avoid any issue where these two teams would have to play on a mutual off-day later in the year. 

The Cubs were in the midst of a stretch of 17 games in 17 days without a day off. They're still on that same schedule, though now with an unexpected day off Monday and a doubleheader Tuesday.

The Cubs are no stranger to postponements this season as wacky weather has continued to hamper this MLB season.

"Not only for the Chicago Cubs, but Chicago in general, this has been a really interesting spring and summer season," Green said. "We're taking our licks just like everybody else is.

"Our plan is to play baseball tomorrow and make sure we can accomodate fans as best as possible. So fans who have tickets to tonight's game will be able to use them for tomorrow."