Cubs

Kris Bryant makes a special kind of personal history with 100th homer

Kris Bryant makes a special kind of personal history with 100th homer

Kris Bryant is now a part of the 100 Home Run Club.

The Cubs superstar connected on a line shot into the left-field bleachers Wednesday afternoon off Wei-Yin Chen. What's even more special is it came on the three-year anniversary of his first MLB homer.

"Couldn't have scripted it any better — first home run three years ago and now 100," Bryant said. "I guess it made it even more special. It was pretty cool. I know it took me a while to hit my first one, but pretty cool story to do it on the same day.

Bryant had trouble putting the milestone into words and said he forgot it was his 100th dinger as he was rounding the bases.

"I just feel really dang happy that I got there and hopefully there's many more," he said.

After a slow start at the plate in the power department (just 2 homers on May 1), Bryant has turned it on of late, sending balls into the stands four times over the last week.

He now has 6 homers, 16 RBI and a 1.001 OPS on the 2018 season. He also has 6 career postseason homers.

Bryant is the fastest Cubs player to 100 homers in franchise history, doing so in his 487th career game. Ernie Banks held the previous record (500 games).

"The sky is the limit," Joe Maddon said of Bryant. "The guy is dedicated, motivated, athletic, he's good, takes care of himself, [plays] multiple positions, MVP winner who does not care where you put him in the lineup, whether it's offensively or defensively. He's kind of the manager's dream."

As cool as it was for his own personal resume, Bryant did miss out on a special part of Cubs history, as he homered off Chen and not Phillies pitcher Adam Morgan:

Maybe the tickling helped Tuesday night?

Kris Bryant hit a homer, but Cubs announcer Jim Deshaies stole the show with an incredible sequence

Kris Bryant hit a homer, but Cubs announcer Jim Deshaies stole the show with an incredible sequence

The last time Kris Bryant homered, milk was 10 cents a gallon, nobody had ever heard the term "launch angle" and Khalil Mack was still on the Raiders.

OK, it's not been quite that long (except the last point is true), but the 2016 MVP went yard Monday night for the first time in nearly two months.

Bryant's opposite field shot was his first dinger since July 20 or put another way — it was his first homer since the Cubs traded for Cole Hamels and Jesse Chavez.

It was beautiful swing, too, but Cubs TV analyst Jim Deshaies upstaged Bryant by calling the shot and maintaining that prediction the entire at-bat.

Deshaies and Len Kasper teamed up for one of the most incredible calls of the Cubs 2018 season, adding to the joy for fans as they watched the 2016 NL MVP finally get on the board in the homer column.

Bryant hit a solo shot on July 20 against the Cardinals at Wrigley Field, but went on the shelf four days later after aggravating his shoulder injury. He missed more than five weeks before returning Sept. 1 and then went another 49 at-bats before connecting on his first dinger.

That's a great sign for a Cubs offense that has scuffled badly in September and has missed Bryant being Bryant.

Even Joe Maddon's son enjoys second-guessing his dad

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USA TODAY

Even Joe Maddon's son enjoys second-guessing his dad

When Joe Maddon walked out of the visiting dugout at Chase Field Monday night, Cubs fans were in an uproar on Twitter.

Including Maddon's own son, Joseph.

Maddon opted to take starter Kyle Hendricks out of the Cubs' 5-1 victory with two outs in the ninth inning following Paul Goldschmidt's single up the middle.

To which Joseph responded: "I get why he did it but I still booed my dad for pulling The Professor."

Maddon gets a lot of heat on Twitter, but this was an appropriate, light-hearted take on second-guessing the decisions of the Cubs skipper in a game in which his team cruised to its 88th victory of the season.

For all the crap he takes, this has probably been Maddon's finest season at the helm of the Cubs, who currently hold the best record in the National League despite an exhausting stretch over the last month.

Since Pedro Strop went down with a hamstring injury in Washington D.C. last Thursday, Maddon has had to get creative with the Cubs bullpen, deploying the likes of Dillon Maples, Jaime Garcia, Randy Rosario and Jorge De La Rosa alongside the team's top relievers in high-leverage situations.

The result has been a string of 9.2 scoreless innings from the Cubs bullpen, including the one pitch Justin Wilson threw Monday night before the final out.