Cubs Record: 67-41
W: Jon Lester
L: Dillon Overton
MVP: Jon Lester and Jorge Soler
Dexter Fowler got the game started the right way with a leadoff solo home run to left center. Later that inning Jorge Soler made his glorious return after being out for nearly two months with an injury, hitting a 3-run home run to put the game at 4-0 before most people were settled into their seats.
The Cubs got 3 more runs in the 3rd inning on an RBI single from Jason Heyward and a 2-run double to left by Javier Baez. Seven runs in 3 innings ended up being more than enough for Jon Lester, who pitched a gem to earn the win and push the Cubs’ winning streak to five.
There is a great deal to love about this one as the Cubs scored very early and often and it felt like they already had an insurmountable lead before the A’s even had a chance to hit. Every single starter had a hit except for David Ross.
Dexter Fowler continues to be a spark for his team at the top of the lineup. He worked a full count in the 1st inning before crushing his homer (9), finishing the night 2-for-5 to bring his average up to .291.
Addison Russell looked like a man ready to make his former team regret moving him as he went 2-for-3 with an HBP. He had solid contact all night and also made some great defensive plays out at short.
Like I said earlier, Jorge Soler made his return to the show and he immediately came up with two men on base in the 1st inning. He didn’t disappoint or waste the chance as he deposited a laser into the left field bleachers. He makes the lineup that much deeper when he is healthy.
Javier Baez looked much more in control of his swing Friday and drove in his 41st and 42nd runs of the season. He also made some great plays at third; he is just such a smooth defender.
Jon Lester was locked in and he finished the quality start by giving up just 2 runs on 6 scattered hits (1 HR) in 7 innings. He also struck out 8 and walked none.
Carl Edwards Jr. has looked awesome out of the pen and he has really turned himself into a consistent option for Joe Maddon. He struck out 2 in his inning of work before giving way to newly acquired Joe Smith, who got the final 3 outs for the win.
The Bad/The Ugly
There isn’t much to harp on from this game on the Cubs’ end. The scored 7 runs and got some great pitching, as well as fantastic defense, to give the Cubs a very comfortable victory.
The Cubs have some pretty decent pitching matchups this weekend. Saturday’s game starts at 3:05 PM (CST) and the Cubs will give Jake Arrieta the ball against Sonny Gray for the A’s. Gray has not been the same pitcher we’ve seen in past years and has really struggled to a 5-10 record and a 5.84 ERA on the year.