Just about the only (positive) constant this trying season has been Ted Lilly, who not coincidentally is also the Cubs‘ only All-Star. Lilly lived up to his Mr. Consistency reputation again on Saturday, pitching 8 innings of 4 hit, 1 run ball, and not against any old team either, but against the mighty Cardinals and their big swingers. Lilly collected his 9th win of the season and the 100th of his career.
Lilly and the Cubs got the win largely because they were able to keep Albert Pujols in the yard, limiting him to just a pair of singles. The big offensive blow for Chicago came from, of all people, newly-acquired utility man Jeff Baker, whose bases-loaded single in the first plated three runners.
Unfortunately the day would not be all daisies and rainbows: Derrek Lee, pretty much the only reliable hitter in the Cubs’ line-up, had to leave after the fifth inning with a recurrence of the neck spasms that have bothered him off-and-on for a long time. Lee assures us the spasms were not serious and his leaving the game was only a precaution. Sure.