Starlin Castro, Cubs walk-off in 16 vs Rockies, win 4-3


All-Star shortstop Starlin Castro delivered a walk-off sacrifice fly to right field to drive in catcher John Baker during the bottom of the 16th inning to win the ball game 4-3, ending the longest game ever played in Chicago Cubs history.

It was a wild night as both the Cubs (44-61) and the Colorado Rockies (43-63) used all of their available pitchers including one starter that was supposed to take the mound on Thursday for the Rox. Colorado quickly jumped to a 3-0 lead during the top of the first inning thanks to veteran first baseman Justin Morneau and Nolan Arenado.

Cubs first baseman Anthony Rizzo would make it a 3-1 ballgame after lining a single to right field to drive in Emilio Bonifacio.

Bonifacio had himself a strong night at the plate, finishing the night 4-7 with a game tying two run home run during the bottom of the fourth inning. He was a triple away from the cycle, but sill found a way to get himself on base late in the game with a single to center field during the bottom of the 11th.

Chicago had back-to-back innings where they had their lead-off hitter reach on walks, but couldn’t put the game in their back pockets after having multiple chances with runners in scoring position.

Starting pitcher Edwin Jackson (5-11, 5.79 ERA) had himself another disappointing outing after leaving early against the San Diego Padres in his previous start. Jackson made it through only four innings of work tonight after allowing Colorado to record seven hits and three runs (all earned), tying his career high with 25 earned runs in a single month.

Chicago’s bullpen including, catcher John Baker would pitch a shutout, as Colorado had to dig into their starting rotation sending Tyler Matzek to the mound to relieve closer LaTroy Hawkins.

Baker entered the game as a relief pitcher after Pedro Strop completed two innings of work, walking only one and striking out two. Baker issued only one walk and got himself out of the inning with a double play started by second baseman Arismendy Alcantara which would send the game into the 16th inning.

He would lead-off the inning with the crowd chanting his name as loud as they possibly could, resulting in Baker drawing a walk. Bonifacio moved Baker over to second on a sacrifice bunt, which would be followed up by Alcantara being hit by a pitch delivered by Matzek. The pitch that got away from Matzek would hit the young rookie second baseman in the shin area, sending him to the ground in pain.

Alcantara gathered himself together and trotted his way to first base giving his team a chance to win the ballgame with only one out.

Rizzo kept things going by recording his second hit of the ballgame on a bloop single to left field, loading up the bases for Starlin Castro. Both Anthony Rizzo and Starlin Castro would finish tonight’s marathon 2-7 with an RBI in their back pocket, but left a total of nine runners on base.

Catcher John Baker picked up his first Major League win as a pitcher.

Tuesday’s ballgame between the Cubs and Rockies lasted six and a half hours, and featured two seventh inning stretches with the last one being conducted by Cubs broadcast team Len Kasper and Jim DeShaies.

Tomorrow night’s Game 3 between these two exhausted teams will be shown on CSN+ and aired on WGN 720 with the first pitch scheduled for 7:05 P.M. CT.

Probable pitchers as of right now could feature a battle of the lefties as Travis Wood (7-9, 5.06 ERA) and Brett Anderson (1-3, 3.24 ERA) look to help add another victory in the win column for their last place teams.