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Where have all the doubles gone?

by: Mauricio Rubio Jr.

In Monday's loss against the Atlanta Braves the Cubs managed to strand 12 batters, scoring zero runs despite 10 hits. Stop me if you've seen that movie before.

Gone are all those perceived clutch hits from last year as this Cubs team has been reduced to clawing for runs instead of pumping them in with the regularity last years Cubs team enjoyed.

The Cubs are actually 5th in the NL Home Runs wise, and have drawn the most walks in the league, but they cannot seem to put together those innings where they scored a bunch of runs without a homer. No, it's not because Mark DeRosa left, it's because the doubles seemed to have left with him.

The 2009 Chicago Cubs rank 14 out of 16 NL teams in doubles a year after finishing first in that category. That's troubling, but not as much as it seems first blush. The Cubs are making hard contact, but are hitting them right at people, and I don't know if this is scouting or bad luck or both, but eventually this team will start to hit the doubles that are missing right now.

Until they do though it might be a bit rocky, and Cubs fans should probably get used to this softball style of baseball, but rest assured that it won't last long.


  1. Mauricio,

    You might need to check your stats on this article. The Cubs are 10th in the league in walks drawn, and 12th in OBP.

    The main reason the team hasn't hit a lot of doubles isn't that they're hitting the ball hard right at people, but that a lot of their hitters are trying to pull the ball in the air and hit home runs, rather than hitting the ball hard on a line. Hence the high proportion of homers:doubles.

  2. Mixed up the so and the bb columns.

    I'd tend to agree with you about trying to pull the ball, but when you consider that their Line Drive rate is only slightly below lg. average, their GB/FB ratio is slightly above average, and the team has been under performing BABiP wise, I don't know.

    Milton Bradley has a career rate of .321 for BABiP, this year he is at .282.

    Soto career .321, this year he is at .258.

    Soriano career, .306, this year he is at .247.

    Derrek Lee career, .323, this year, with his recent hot streak, he is up to .317. When he struggled early he was at .213.

    To me, the fact that those rates are so low denotes that the Cubs have been very hit unlucky. Anecdotal evidence suggests this as well.

    Those are crazy low BABiP rates, and they should not continue for the whole season, and the fact that the whole team has been unlucky is rather remarkable.

    Maybe there is something to this curse thing.