Following a 10-4 home loss to Cleveland on Friday, the Cubs looked to get back on track behind Shelby Miller, who was making his second appearance for the Northsiders. Miller allowed one run on an Orlando Arcia RBI single in the 2nd inning, but secured the victory thanks to Joc Pederson‘s go-ahead two-run blast in the 3rd (box score).
Why the Cubs Won
The Cubs capitalized on uncharacteristically shoddy Brewers defense. Arcia and Keston Hiura, who were playing out of their customary positions to accommodate new acquisition Kolten Wong, combined for three errors.
Cubs relievers allowed no runs and the final ten Brewers outs of the game were recorded by strikeout.
With two outs in the 3rd inning, Ian Happ reached base after a fly ball hit to left field bounced out of Arcia’s glove. Pederson stepped to the plate and hit a blast to the left center field berm, giving the Cubs a 2-1 lead over the Crew.
Stats that Matter
- Cubs relievers allowed no runs, keeping the Brewers from creeping back into the game.
- The Northsiders’ pitching staff recorded 13 total strikeouts. Ten were recorded by Cubs relievers and accounted for the final ten Brewers outs of the game.
- Ian Miller stole second and third base in the 6th inning after replacing Austin Romine as a pinch runner but did not score.
The Cubs were able to cash in on Brewers mistakes and scoring opportunities to win a close game, which could be a good sign for success in regular season contests against the Crew. Or it may mean nothing because, well, spring training.
The Cubs head to Salt River Fields at Talking Stick to face the Arizona Diamondbacks at 2:10 PM CT tomorrow. Jake Arrieta is scheduled to make his spring debut in his return to the Cubs. He will face Merrill Kelly, who allowed two runs over 2.0 IP in his March 1 start against the Brewers. The game broadcast will be available on 98.7 FM Arizona’s Sports Station and Fox Sports Arizona.