It was a back and forth affair today between the Chicago Cubs (53-35) and the Pittsburgh Pirates (46-43), with five lead changes and two ties, but the Cubs showed some grit (finally) and won a tight one by the score of 6-5 (Box Score).
For his part, John Lackey was not great today, but he was just barely good enough to keep the Cubs in the game into the seventh inning. The bullpen would pick it up there and, contrary to recent performances, shut the door on the Pirates. They gave up no hits, no walks, no soup for you! (Sorry, I had to…)
On offense the Cubs clubbed out 15 hits. Honestly, I’m very happy they won, but I also think that they need to score more than six runs on 15 hits and two walks. They went 3-for-12 with RISP and left nine men on base. This is an area that needs to be addressed.
Stats that mattered
- Lackey was…meh – 6.0IP, 5R, 7H, 2BB, 9Ks, 2HR
- Bullpen was….yippee – 3.0IP, 0R, 0H, 2Ks
- Anthony Rizzo is ON FIRE (but the Cubs couldn’t capitalize) – 4-for-5, 1R, 2B
- Kris Bryant is the Cubs best player at the break – 3-for-4, 1R, 1RBI, 1BB
- Albert Almora had a huge two-run home run in the top of the fourth to give the Cubs the lead – 2-for-4, 1R, 2RBIs
That’s a great way to end the first half of the season for the Cubs. Going 9-15 over a stretch of 24 straight games leading into the all-star break, that’s rough. And that’s the best way to describe the last month – rough. I’ll just leave it at that for now. There will be plenty of time to talk things through over the next few days.
Enjoy the all-star break!