And on the seventh day they rested. With a league best 24-6 record after their first 30 games, that is really the only negative that you say about the Chicago Cubs right now. This current 2016 team has shown the ability to just bludgeon teams on a daily basis. With the most runs scored (184) and fewest runs allowed (82) the Cubs have been relentless in wearing down their opponents. As the Chicago Cubs continue their dominating start, they have been really good just about every day of the week, except on Sundays.
While Sunday’s Mother’s Day game ended in dramatic fashion, it was not without its tense moments early on. Jake Arrieta started the game aiming to go 7-0 in his first seven starts. However, without his usual pinpoint control the Washington Nationals were able to keep the reigning Cy Young winner at bay. This game marked the first time that Arrieta allowed runs in three consecutive innings since 2012. That was when he was a member of the Baltimore Orioles, pre-beard, and pre-dominance.
On the year, Arrieta has allowed a total of six earned runs. Gasp, his ERA ballooned to over 1.00 after his tame outing on Sunday. Of the six earned runs that he has allowed, five of them have come on Sundays. The man is proving to be only human after all.
The Cubs are averaging 6.1 runs per game through the first five weeks of the season. It is the best pace that the team has been on in franchise history. The scary part about that is the weather in Chicago has not even begun to warm up and become hitter friendly on a consistent basis. The plus-102 run differential for Joe Maddon‘s team is rivaling that of the great New York Yankees teams of the 1920s.
Yet it is on Sundays where the Cubs have shown a hint of vulnerability. Chicago’s lowest run output per day of the week is on Sundays, and that is a measly 4.6 runs. Their lone shutout also came on the universal day of rest. If it were not for the comeback efforts and Javier Baez’s walk off home run, the Cubs would have suffered their third loss on a Sunday. When the overall loss column is still in the single digits, that number looks a lot more concerning.
As the Cubs continue their dominating start to the season, they have been hitting on all cylinders just about every time out and every day of the week. For the rest of the league, the lone glimmer of hope appears to come on Sundays. Perhaps it is because on Sundays all eyes from the heavens are even taking a little time to take in this Cubs team. Even the post office slows down on Sundays.
When you are off to the best 30-game start since 1907, the negatives are hard to find. That 1907 start also ended with a World Series victory, might the same also be true in 2016? With the start that the Cubs are having, the fun and magic are showing up every day of the week, Sundays included.