The Cubs fired Chili Davis partially because, to paraphrase Theo Epstein, they got away from hitting the ball in the air at some point in the second half.
Just how bad was the Cubs’ grounder rate in the second half? Really, really bad. So bad it made bad things look not bad. As a team, the Cubs combined an MLB-worst 49 percent grounder rate after the break. The Dodgers and Yankees, for comparison, ranked in the bottom 10 percent for grounder rate.
Hitting so few balls in the air is not in keeping with the Cubs’ offensive philosophy and it’s not what they expect see in the future.