Matt Cain pitches 5 perfect innings, Chicago Cubs come back to win it 3-2


Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

After being dominated for the first half of this afternoon’s contest, the Cubbies played comeback, getting RBIs from Emilio Bonifacio and a game winning error in the seventh to win their fourth straight. Jeff Samardzija and Matt Cain both impressed, the former pitching four solid frames and the latter going five perfect innings on the bump.

The scoring started in the fourth inning, as after three scoreless, two-hit innings from Samardzija, the Giants’ slimmed-down third baseman Pablo Sandoval snuck a grounder past a drawn in Donnie Murphy at third, scoring two runs to give them an early lead.

That was it for the San Francisco, as even with Barry Bonds suiting up for the first time today the team couldn’t muster more than those two runs. After Samardzija departed, the Cubs got solid outings from Alberto Cabrera, pitching one scoreless frame, Chris Rusin with  three perfect innings and Jonathan Sanchez picking up his second save in a scoreless ninth inning.

Cain was mowing down the helpless Cubs for the first five innings, not allowing a single baserunner while punching out seven to continue a fantastic spring for San Francisco’s starting five. Thankfully for Chicago, Cain was limited to just five innings, which gave them enough time to win it against the bullpen.

The Cubs started their comeback in the sixth after Cain’s departure with Starlin Castros primary backup, Emilio Bonifacio, singling home a run to bring the Cubs within one. An inning later the Cubs took the lead for good, scoring two off Jeremy Affeldt on a run-scoring single from Chris Coghlan, and an error from slick-fielding Brandon Crawford to bring in the winning run.

Arguably the biggest spring story line for Chicago, Mike Olt, started once again at first base, finishing 1-for-3 with a single and two strikeouts. Olt recently said he’s almost back to third base, and could be there possibly as soon as this week as he recovers from some minor shoulder soreness.

After picking up their fourth straight victory, the Cubs (5-6) will host the Colorado Rockies (6-6) at Cubs Park tomorrow afternoon at 3:05 CT. 2013 All-Star Travis Wood (0-0, 0.00 ERA) will take on fellow lefty Jorge De La Rosa (1-0, 9.64 ERA) in search of the team’s sixth “W”.