The 1951 New York Giants and the 1962 San Francisco Giants are the only teams in baseball history to recover from deficits of 3 1/2 games or more with seven games to play. That was the margin facing the Brewers entering Monday.
When I read that this afternoon at mlb.com, I felt so calm, so assured about the Cubs' immediate future. Obviously, the only kind of team that could possibly overcome a three-and-a-half game lead with seven games to play was one whose name included the word "Giants."
Then tonight, the Cubs went out and lost their eighth consecutive game to the Florida Marlins--the last-place Florida Marlins--and the Brewers slaughtered the Cardinals (again) and now we're looking at a two-game margin, which should still work for us, but...
I've been re-reading "Baseball Between The Numbers" in preparation for writing a piece for The Cub Reporter. My plan is to evaluate the Cubs' chances for playoff success based on those team statistics which Baseball Prospectus has identified as the most telling when it comes to making post-season prognostications. I think it's going to be a good piece.
And if the Cubs blow it for me between now and Sunday, I'll never speak to them again.
Memo to the St. Louis Cardinals: the Brewers have a home game Wednesday night. You guys should try to make it.