During the Cubs’ 10-game losing streak, the Northsiders fell from 3rd place in the NL Central to dead last.
The losing streak began on June 4th, the night game of a doubleheader against the St. Louis Cardinals. The Cubs lost 7-4 at Wrigley Field. The streak continued until June 17th, a 1-0 victory against the Atlanta Braves.
During the streak, the Cubs were outscored 90-30, were shut out once, and only scored five runs twice. Two teams beat the Cubs by 14 runs during the improbable streak. The New York Yankees won 18-4 on June 12th at Yankee Stadium. On June 15th, the San Diego Padres embarrassed the Cubs at Wrigley Field 19-5.
Only a few games were close. The Cubs lost by one run once, and two runs twice.
The losing streak places them in a perfect spot to continue this season’s rebuild. This means trading important assets for the future.
This also means trading players who have had great Cub careers. Willson Contreras fits that description perfectly, and there’s reason to believe he will no longer be a Cub when the offseason rolls around.
Christopher Morel and Contreras have continued playing well, despite the recent downfall.
Contreras is hitting video game numbers in his last seven games. Contreras has a .370 batting average, .393 OBP, and a 1.097 OPS. In his previous 15 games, those numbers dip slightly to .316/.409/1.005.
Rookie Morel continues to play well. In his last 15 games leading off, Morel is slashing .277/.314/.822. Those numbers get even better when you look at the bigger picture. Over his last 30 games: .273/.343/.831.
It was the first time since 1999 that a team with a 10+ game winning streak played a team with a 10+ game losing streak. To the surprise of many baseball fans, including myself, the Cubs got the job done, winning 1-0, ending the streaks for both teams. Rookie center fielder Morel won the game on an eighth-inning sacrifice fly. Jonathan Villar raced home from third, barely squeezing by the throw to home plate.
Keegan Thompson threw one of his best outings of the season, hurling six shutout innings, allowing two hits, striking nine batters out, and walking two.
After defeating the Braves in game one, game two brought more memorable action.
Contreras’ younger brother, William, plays for the Braves. William started at catcher in this game, making it the first game since 2014 where two brothers started at catcher in the same game.
William mentions how important this game was for him: “The real moment, the one I was looking forward to most, was being able to play against each other on the same field.
Out of brotherly competition, both siblings played phenomenally. Willson got the upper hand, going 3-5 with two singles, a double, and one RBI. William played well, racking up two hits in four tries, including a single and a double. Similar to the brother battle, the Cubs also won the game.
This is the first series win for the Cubs since May 16-18 against the Pirates.