Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Chicago Cubs dismal at the plate, drop 7-2 game to Philadelphia Phillies

Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports

Chase Utley and John Mayberry led their team to victory tonight, both hitting two-run bombs to secure the victory for Philly. Chase Utley hit the eventual game-winner in the fifth, homering off of left-hander Travis Wood to take the 3-2 lead at the time. Mayberry added the final blow in the eighth, a two-run shot to left, effectively putting the Cubs in their place.

Ryne Sandberg and the Philadelphia Phillies took down the Cubs rather easily in the 100th home opener at Wrigley Field, routing the Cubs 7-2 to pick up their second win of the early season. Travis Wood made his 2014 debut on the bump, pitching six-plus innings while allowing four runs, just three earned. Wood also struck out eight and scattered six hits in a fairly solid start to the new season.

The day actually started very well for Chicago, with Welington Castillo crushing a solo shot to left in the third, and then Starlin Castro knocking one in during the third inning. After falling behind 2-0 in the third, the Phillies came back in the fourth and fifth innings, scoring three including that go-ahead homer from Utley.

Two innings later Utley would add another RBI to his day, singling home Ben Revere to put Philly ahead by a score of two. The Phillies weren`t done yet, scoring three more runs in the eight and ninth frames, including a two-run dinger from pinch-hitter John Mayberry.

While the bullpen definitely carries more upside than last year`s group, they will still struggle, as Wesley Wright and Brian Schlitter combined for three runs allowed and five hits in about three innings.

There were a couple questionable managerial decisions in this one (after a few from Renteria in Pittsburgh), with Renteria calling on Hector Rondon after Wood was pulled, then putting in Wesley Wright one batter later. One would think Renteria should have just put in Wright in the first place. Not to mention, Mike Olt not in the lineup once again facing a right-hander (Yes, It`s early, but if this becomes a pattern Renteria could certainly deserve some criticism).

However, It wasn`t just Ricky Renteria. Sandberg made a ridiulous move in the ninth, taking out left-hander Mario Hollands with two outs in the ninth inning of a 7-2 game. But, whatever. It`s Ryne Sandberg.

The offense outweighed some possibly questionable managerial moves, though, as the Cubs could muster just three base hits the entire game, a game where the wind was howling out to right field. Even record-breaking Emilio Bonifacio went 0-3 today.

After a disheartening home opener, the Cubs will go at it again tomorrow at 1:20 CT. Jeff Samardzija (0-0, 0.00 ERA) will face off against Cliff Lee (1-0, 14.40 ERA) in a battle of the “number ones” at Wrigley Field.

Tags: Chicago Cubs

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