Archive for the ‘ Game Recaps ’ Category

From Bad to Worse as Cubs Get Thrashed Again

Dale Sveum said it best after the game, “That’s just men playing against boys right now.”  For the second straight night the Cubs gave up six home runs to the Nationals, at least they didn’t use as many pitchers tonight as they did last night.  Volstad was the one serving up long balls tonight, but at least he was able to give the Cubs some innings.  Volstad’s night came to an end after five innings, he gave up five runs on nine hits while walking four and striking out two.  Volstad gave up three home runs, Michael Bowden gave up one, and Blake Parker gave up two more.  Bryce Harper had two home runs tonight, and Adam LaRoche hit another home run in this one, LaRoche has been amazing against the Cubs, and will continue to be awesome until someone decides to pitch him inside off the plate.  I mentioned it yesterday, opponents are way too comfortable in the box against Cubs pitchers, until they go inside with a purpose balls will continue to leave the park.  Speaking of comfortable at the plate, the Cubs are anything but as they were carved up by now 18 game winner Gio Gonzalez.  The Cubs could only manage four hits in the 9-1 defeat, one of which was an Anthony Rizzo solo home run in the ninth inning.  Dale Sveum was ejected tonight after he took exception to home plate umpire Larry Vanover “eyeballing” the Cubs bench after a couple of close calls.  The Cubs will try to avoid the four game sweep tomorrow night.

FULL BOX SCORE

Game Highlights:
Anthony Rizzo’s 11th Home Run
Great Play by Vitters
Sveum Ejected

Thanks for reading,
– George

Nats Pound Cubs Into Submission

No doubt about this one, as the Nationals pounded out 19 hits, six of which were home runs, and 11 runs en route to an 11-5 victory over the Cubs.  This one was ugly from the get go as Chris Rusin couldn’t command anything and was awesome at finding the barrel of the Nationals bats.  Rusin only lasted an inning plus giving up five runs on eight hits while walking one and striking out one.  The Cubs used seven pitchers in this one, and everyone one of them gave up at least two hits except for Jaye Chapman who pitched a hitless, scoreless inning in his major league debut.  This one was basically a spring training game, Sveum threw out almost every pitcher possible to see what they had, most of them didn’t have much.  Offensively it was a weird night for the Cubs, hitters two through five were 8-14 with a triple, a home run, two walks, five RBI’s and five runs scored.  The rest of the Cubs were 0-for-19 with two walks, yikes.  Luis Valbuena, Anthony Rizzo, Alfsonso Soriano, and Starlin Castro all had two hits in the loss.  Soriano had a great night at the plate going 2-for-4 with a home run, a triple, and three RBI’s.  The Cubs set a franchise record tonight by playing their 51st player of the year, not really sure if that’s something to be happy about, probably not.

FULL BOX SCORE

Game Highlights:
DeJesus Makes a Great Catch
Soriano’s 26th Home Run
Castro With a Leaping Catch
Castro’s RBI Single
Chapman’s First Career K

Thanks for reading,
– George

Cubs Threaten Late but Fall Short

Jeff Samardzija is probably getting used to this, as it seems to be happening a lot, such is life being the ace of a team trying to build its entire organization from the ground up.  Yes, I said ace, Samardzija is starting to become every bit of the word, today was another step in that direction.  Samardzija made one mistake in his seven innings of work and it resulted in an Adam LaRoche solo homer that gave the Nats a 1-0 lead early.  They would tack on an insurance run in the eighth, and survived a Cubs scare in the ninth to escape with a 2-1 victory.  As I mentioned Samardzija worked seven strong innings giving up one run on seven hits while walking one and striking out eight, unfortunately he finished his day with his 13th loss of the season.  The Cubs couldn’t solve Ross Detwiler today as they could only manage four hits against the southpaw who won his 9th game of the season.  Starlin Castro was one of the Cubs who found some success at the plate today as he was 2-for-4 with a double in the loss.  Welington Castillo continues his push for the 2013 starting role behind the plate as he finished the day 2-for-3 with an RBI, he also picked off a runner at first late in the game.

FULL BOX SCORE

Game Highlights:
Castillo’s RBI Single
Mather’s Nice Catch
Castro’s Slick Play

Thanks for reading,
– George

Cubs Can’t Overcome Early Giant Surge

Much like the Cubs did yesterday, the Giants jumped out in front early and rode that momentum to victory.  Justin Germano got the start and struggled with his command early, and he can’t succeed if he doesn’t have his command.  The Giants struck for four runs in the first, all coming after the first two hitters were retired.  Germano finished his day after five innings giving up five runs on six hits while walking two and striking out two.  His counterpart Tim Lincecum was good today, however he made plenty of mistakes over the middle of the plate but the Cubs couldn’t take advantage as they could only bang out five hits in the loss.  David DeJesus got every bit of a Lincecum mistake in the third inning launching a massive two-run homer that bounced onto Sheffield Avenue to bring the Cubs to within three at 5-2.  Unfortunately that was as close as the Cubs would get as they were shut down over the last six innings in this one.  Anthony Rizzo also had a good day at the plate as he is starting to get hot again, he finished the day 2-for-4 with a double.  The rubber game of the series takes place tomorrow afternoon where the Cubs will put their hopes of a series win in the hands of Travis Wood.

FULL BOX SCORE     

 

  

Game Highlights:
Barney With a Slick Play
DeJesus’ Great Play
Massive Two-Run Homer From DeJesus

Thanks for reading,
– George

 

Bizarro World: Volstad Wins Second Straight

Maybe Chris Volstad has found something.  Volstad went without a win in 24 straight starts, over a full calendar year, he has two wins in his last two starts.  Volstad was good today, on a day when the conditions favored anyone with a bat in their hands.  He found the zone early and then pitched to his strengths after that, he finished his day after 5.2 innings giving up two runs on five hits while walking three and striking out two.  Coming into this one I don’t think many people gave the Cubs a chance, not only are the Giants much better, but the Cubs were facing all world lefty Madison Bumgarner.  As they say, that’s why they play the games.

The Cubs jumped Bumgarner early, as they scored once in the first and piled on four more in the third inning to take a 5-0 lead.  The Giants tried to make it a game late as they pulled within two in the 8th but Carlos Marmol came on to shut the door in the ninth, again, he’s been outstanding as of late.  Anthony Rizzo hit his first home run since August 5, no one believed it so they actually had to review it to make sure.  Okay, that’s not really why, it was ruled a triple but replays showed it was gone, it was Rizzo’s 10th home run of the season, he finished the day 2-for-4 with an RBI, and two runs scored.  Alfonso Soriano also had a big day at the plate, basically rubbing it in the Giants face, “you’ll never get this, you’ll never get this” Soriano was overheard as he rounded the bases on his 24th home run of the season.  Soriano of course has said that he would prefer to not play in San Francisco if the Giants tried to trade for him, Soriano finished the day 2-for-4 with three RBI’s.

FULL BOX SCORE

Volstad Presser

Sveum Presser

Game Highlights
Soriano’s Two-Run Bomb
Full Video Recap
Rizzo’s ….. Home Run
Castillo’s RBI Double

Thanks for reading,
– George

Cubs Win Wild One at Wrigley

I mentioned while watching the end of the game, it really doesn’t matter what the Cubs record is, seeing them win a game like that is fun and gets you pumped for what this team could be one day.  What a crazy day at Wrigley, haven’t seen one of these summer day games in a while.  This one started out well enough as the Cubs jumped out to an early 3-0 lead behind a Starlin Castro triple and Anthony Rizzo double, then things got familiar.  By familiar I mean bad, as in the Brewers started beating the crap out of Cubs pitching, again.  The Brewers scored five times in the 3rd, and two more times in the fourth to take a 7-3 lead.  They weren’t done there as they plated two more in the 6th to make it 9-3 and all but assured themselves of a four game sweep.  Not so fast, the Cubs came roaring back in the bottom of the sixth inning, they scored six times on four hits to even the game at nine.  It didn’t take long for the Brewers to grab the lead back as they scored once in the 7th and once in the 8th to build an 11-9 lead heading to the ninth.  That’s when the Cubs of 2012 turned into the Cubs of 2015, okay I’m getting ahead of myself, but the Cubs ninth inning is exactly what everyone is hoping to see on a daily basis on the Northside of Chicago.  Each guy worked the count and made sure that the pitcher was the one in trouble, the end result was a thrilling 12-11 walk off victory, the 50th of the season.  The Cubs walked 11 times this afternoon, that is outstanding, a number of guys had tremendous days, too many to mention here, the box score can do the talking.  I will say this, Starlin Castro had an outstanding day at the plate, not just because of the results, but because he worked every at bat especially in the ninth when he got down 0-2 before working the count to 3-2 and singling up the middle.  Great win!

FULL BOX SCORE

Sveum Postgame

Game Highlights:
Full Video Recap
Rizzo’s Game Tying Double
Castro’s Big Hit in the Ninth
Cubs Six Run Sixth
Jackson’s Big Double
Rizzo Just Misses a HR
Castro Legs Out a Triple

Thanks for reading,
– George

Offensive Struggles Continue For Cubs in Loss

Let’s not kid ourselves, this is pretty bad, sure it’s something that needs to happen in order to get better, but it’s really bad.  The Cubs had one more hit than they had last night, a whopping four, at least two of those hits went for extra bases, bright side right?  Another piece of good news is that the Cubs only struck out seven times as a team tonight, a moral victory if you will.  It’s a shame too as Jeff Samardzija turned in another solid outing as he winds down his first full season as a big league starter.  Shark finished his night after seven innings, he gave up three runs, two earned, on seven hits, he didn’t walk anyone and struck out ten.  To think that at the beginning of the season the Cubs were “taking a chance” by putting Samardzija into the rotation, he has been a bright spot all year-long, and looks to be near the top of the rotation in 2013.  The Cubs had nothing going offensively as Mike Fiers was as equally as impressive as Samardzija, shutting the Cubs down for 7.1 innings.  Starlin Castro and Welington Castillo each had a double in the loss, but at least there was something to get excited about tonight if you were a Cubs fan.  Congrats to Darwin Barney, who tonight set the NL single-season record with his 114th consecutive error-less game at second base.  Wish you weren’t turning into Theriot at the plate, let’s avoid the sweep tomorrow afternoon!

FULL BOX SCORE

Game Highlights:
Barney’s RBI Groundout

Thanks for reading,
– George

Cubs Shut Down By Gallardo

Can’t really fault Travis Wood too much in this one, he had a quality start on the mound and was the only Cubs offense in a 4-1 defeat.  In the game preview I mentioned that the goal last night was to strike out less than ten times, goal failed.  The Cubs struck out 11 times last night, the Cubs have struck out 65 times in the last five games against the Brewers, all losses.  Back to Wood, he was solid going seven innings giving up three runs on five hits and striking out four.  Wood’s only mistake was a 3-0 fastball to Jeff Bianchi who launched his first major league home run into the left field bleachers to give the Brewers a 3-0 lead.  The Cubs had no answer for Gallardo as they were only able to record three hits, one of which was a home run by Cubs starter Travis Wood that left the yard.  Everyone on the Cubs seemed lost last night, a lot of that had to do with Gallardo’s dominance, he had every hitter off-balance and guessing, it’s not everyday that Rizzo stikes out three times.  Luis Valbuena and Starlin Castro were the only Cubs to register base hits other than Wood, both singles.  Game three of this four game series will be tonight, let’s make contact!

FULL BOX SCORE

 

Game Highlights:
Travis Wood Postgame
Valbuena’s Great Play
Travis Wood Goes Deep

Thanks for reading,
– George

Cubs Collapse Late Against Brewers

For whatever reason the Cubs can’t solve the Brewers, they not only lose to the Brewers, they get blown out by them.  The Cubs raced to an early 3-1 lead last night but couldn’t hold it as Aramis Ramirez and company pushed across three runs in the 5th to take a 4-3 lead.  A Brett Jackson home run in the bottom of the sixth made it 5-4 Brewers, but that was as close as the Cubs would get as the bullpen exploded late.  After giving up one run in the 8th the Cubs pen put on a show in the ninth surrendering nine runs on eight hits.  The best performance on the mound in the ninth inning belonged to Cubs utility outfielder Joe Mather who tossed one-third of an inning giving up only a single.  No word yet if Mather will have a shot to make the team next year out of the bullpen  It was more of the same for the Cubs at the plate against Brewers pitching.  By  more of the same I mean striking out, a lot, as the Cubs fanned 15 times last night, this coming on the heels of striking out 39 times in the three game series in Milwaukee last week.  As I mentioned Brett Jackson went deep, he is locked in right now, he finished the night 1-for-3 with his fourth home run, two walks, an RBI, and a run scored.

FULL BOX SCORE

Game Highlights:
DeJesus Adventure
Castro Turns a Nice Double Play
Jackson Solo Shot
Soriano’s RBI Double

Thanks for reading,
– George

 

 

Volstad’s Winless Streak Ends at 24, Rejoice!

It was a long day at Wrigley today, to Chris Volstad the six and a half hour day was nothing compared to the over year-long wait to get back in the win column.  Twenty-four, that is how many times Chris Volstad made a start on a big league mound between wins.  For the majority of the day it didn’t look like this game would get played at all as the Cubs and Rockies sat through a two plus hour rain delay before getting underway just before four O’clock local time.  Volstad was on right away as he was locating on both sides of the plate and keeping the ball down consistently for really the first time all year.  Volstad avoided the big inning which is usually his downfall, he finished his day after 6.2 innings giving up no runs on three hits while walking three and striking out three to get the win.  The Cubs offensive attack was finally just that, an attack, as they pounded out nine hits and scored five runs in the victory.  Anthony Rizzo, who has been showing some fatigue of late had a solid day at the plate going 2-for-2 with two walks.  Starlin Castro also had a good day at the plate going 2-for-3 with a double, a walk, and three runs scored.  Brett Jackson continued his solid series today as well as he was 1-for-2 with two walks and a run scored, he finished the series 4-for-8 with two home runs, three RBI’s, and three runs scored.

FULL BOX SCORE

Game Highlights:
Volstad’s Great Outing
DeJesus’ RBI Single
Great Catch by Jackson
Castro’s Slick Play

Thanks for reading,
– George

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