Well, right when you thought it was a going to be a slow offensive day today, the Cubs (38-15) exploded and the Diamondbacks (24-33) imploded.
Things were moving along quickly through the first 7 1/2 innings, with the only run coming on a clutch RBI double by Anthony Rizzo in the bottom of the sixth inning with two outs. And it seemed like that was going to be enough to win it. That was until the eighth inning.
The Cubs busted the game wide open on barrage of hits and Dbacks misplays with two outs in the bottom of the eighth inning.
Addison Russell, coming in as a pinch hitter, got things started with a 2-run double he roped to left field. After a Miguel Montero intentional walk, Javier Baez creamed a double to center field and then scored on a Diamondbacks throwing error.
The Dbacks went on to commit another throwing error that allowed Tim Federowicz to take first, Dexter Fowler got hit by a pitch and they both advanced on a wild pitch. Right when it seemed like it might never stop, the inning mercifully ended with a Heyward strikout. The damage was done and the Cubs won the game 6-0 (Box Score).
John Lackey (6-2, 2.88 ERA) was very good again today. He pitched 6.2 shutout innings including nine strikeouts.
Stats that mattered
- Lackey with an outstanding effort – 6.2IP, 0R, 5H, 2BB, 9Ks
- Rizzo is officially out of his slump – 2-for-3, 1RBI, 1BB
- Baez, again, in the middle of everything – 1-for-4, 1R, 2RBIs
- Addison Russell was clutch off the bench – 1-for-1, 1R, 2RBIs
The Cubs keep on rolling. They’ve won a few tight games lately and, even though the final score today reflected a blow out, today’s game is another example that this team can hang in, and win, close games. They’ve won nine of ten games and are starting to put considerable distant between themselves and all the other teams in the National League Central.
The Cubs take on the Dbacks tomorrow at 1:20 PM CDT. Jason Hammel (6-1, 2.09 ERA) takes the hill for the Cubs.