The Chicago Cubs (47-21) just couldn’t quite get things going against Jaime Garcia and the St. Louis Cardinals (36-33). John Lackey (7-3, 2.78 ERA) didn’t help himself much after throwing 57 pitches in the first two innings combined. He gave up three runs in the first three innings, including two home runs. That would prove to be all the runs the Cardinals needed as they go on to beat the Cubs 3-2 (Box Score).
Willson Contreras got his first major league start in the game. He singled to drive in Kris Bryant, scoring the Cubs’ second run in the bottom of the third inning. That would be the last time the Cubs had men in scoring position until the ninth inning.
In the ninth, Albert Almora came up to bat with one out and scorched a double to center field – suddenly the Cubs were in business. Chris Coghlan walked and, with runners on first and second, Trevor Rosenthal chucked a wild pitch that bounced off the ump and right into the waiting arms of Yadier Molina. He fortuitously threw the ball to third to gun down Almora.
That play changed the entire game, for the benefit of the Cardinals. The very next batter, Ben Zobrist, singled to drive in no one. Coghlan advanced from first to third on the play. Jason Heyward came up and popped out, ending the game. Tough one for the Cubs to lose but I guess that’s why they say ‘you can’t win ’em all.’ I hate that saying…
Stats that mattered
- Lackey was loose early but came back to settle in nicely – 6IP, 3R, 7H, 3BB, 6Ks, 2HRs
- Willson Contreras is batting .400 (and yes, that’s a small sample size, folks)
That’s a tough one to lose and a tough way to lose it. Chalk it up and move on.
The Cubs battle the Cardinals again Tuesday night at 7:05 PM CDT. Jason Hammel will take the mound for the Cubs.