Bears

Sveum notices Samardzija wearing down in games

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Sveum notices Samardzija wearing down in games

By Jose M. Romero
CSNChicago.com Contributor

PHOENIX Cubs starter Jeff Samardzija threw 88 pitches in five-plus innings in a 6-1 loss to the Arizona Diamondbacks Friday night. He couldnt get a batter out in the sixth inning, walking the first two hitters before leaving a pitch up for Miguel Montero to rip for a two-run triple that broke the game open.

Samardzija fell to 5-6 with the loss. But manager Dale Sveum took note that one of his starting rotation stalwarts appears to wear down at a certain point in games.

Samardzija has been unable to make it through six full innings in each of his last four starts, the past three being losses. He was a relief pitcher all of last season and is in his first full season as a starter.

Theres something that we have to maybe monitor, because I think Im able to notice him, about the 80-pitch mark, the ball gets up, Sveum said. Thats when the walks start coming and so were going to have to monitor that, because its definitely getting to be a pattern.

Sveum didnt mention anything wrong with Samardzija mechanically. Samardzija, for his part, said he feels fine. He pitched well the first three innings Friday.

Honestly I feel better now than what I did (earlier in the season), Samardzija said after the game. If I go back and look at the film, I havent seen it yet the last couple of times out, but after the Boston game (June 16) I felt pretty good in how I threw and how the ball was coming out.

Samardzija blamed location for his mistakes Friday, not fatigue.

Sveum said before the game that he didnt have a problem with Samardzija throwing 110 pitches in a game as long as there hasnt been a lot of stress and its late in the game. Samardzija threw 110 and 108 pitches in two of his last three starts.

But Sveum might have to re-think what hell do at that high a pitch total for Samardzija given the pitchers struggles earlier in his pitch count Friday.

SportsTalk Live Podcast: Who deserves the blame in the Bears loss to Miami?

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USA TODAY

SportsTalk Live Podcast: Who deserves the blame in the Bears loss to Miami?

David Haugh, Adam Jahns and Patrick Finley join Kap on the panel. The Bears lose a rough one in Miami as Matt Nagy goes conservative at the end zone. Does the rookie coach deserve all of the blame? Dave Wannstedt joins the guys to discuss.

Plus the guys discuss the Cubs’ newest hitting coach/scapegoat, Brandon Saad’s upcoming healthy scratch and Bobby Portis betting on himself this season. 

Listen here or in the embedded player below!

Cubs executive Jason McLeod reportedly linked to Giants' GM opening

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USA TODAY

Cubs executive Jason McLeod reportedly linked to Giants' GM opening

Is this the offseason that Cubs executive Jason McLeod finally becomes an MLB general manager?

According to Bruce Levine, the Giants are reportedly interested in McLeod, the Cubs senior vice president of scouting and player development, for their vacant general manager position.

McLeod joined the Cubs' front office in 2011 alongside Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer. Before the Cubs, he spent six years in the Red Sox front office and two in the Padres' (with Hoyer, who was San Diego's general manager from 2010-2011). 

Of course, the Giants' reported interest in McLeod doesn't necessarily mean that he will interview for the job. However, it's worth noting that McLeod interviewed for the Twins' general manager job in 2016; he also withdrew his name from consideration for the Padres' general manager job in 2014. 

In addition to the Giants, McLeod's name has been linked to the Mets' general manager vacancy. This is more speculation, but the point is that it seems to be only a matter of time before McLeod is hired as general manager elsewhere.

For what it's worth, though, McLeod is under contract through 2021 and has previously said that he is grateful to be with the Cubs. 

“I’m exceptionally grateful,” McLeod said. “All of us are. Look at where we are at this moment in time with this team," McLeod said in 2016. "I can’t imagine a better environment, a better culture to work at in baseball.

"We’ve been together a long time. We’re friends. We’re good. We embrace the fact that we are good. And we challenge ourselves to be even better.”