The Chicago Cubs had a walk-off win of a different variety last night with a pick-off by David Ross to Anthony Rizzo to catch the Washington Nationals’ Clint Robinson with a bit too much of a comfortable lead off of first.
Not only did Ross and Rizzo catch Robinson by surprise, their manager Joe Maddon was just as surprised. “I had no clue,” Maddon said. “Like on many occasions, I had no clue. You give them freedom to declare to be a baseball player. I don’t want to be that control freak that has control every play that is put on a baseball field. Then if you do that, you’re players don’t play.” *via chicagocubs.com.
The Chicago Cubs (28-24) and Tsuyoshi Wada (0-0, 2.30 ERA) would like to ride that wave of unpredictability right into Friday night’s game two against Tanner Roark (1-2, 2.59 ERA) and the Nationals (29-25). This is a rematch from Memorial Day between the two pitchers. Both pitchers played well, but it was Roark on the winning side of the 2-1 victory.
Wada exited the game after 5 1/3 innings pitched with a 1-1 game, but reliever Justin Grimm would surrender the go-ahead and eventual game-winning homer to Wilson Ramos. Wada only gave up four hits, the one run that was a leadoff home run to Denard Span, but also struck out six while walking two.
Roark, who won the game, gave up only 3 hits, one of them being a solo blast by Kris Bryant, for the only run surrendered. I’m sure the Nationals and Roark would be satisfied with that kind of performance again.
Wada’s last start against the Kansas City Royals was again a no decision for the righty. He pitched 5 2/3, two hits, one run, two walks, and four strikeouts.
It would be nice to see if Wada could go beyond the fifth inning for the Cubs if possible to give some of the middle relief a break.
Here is a look at the lineups for tonight’s game:
The first pitch is scheduled for a 6:05 start and can be seen on CSN Chicago and heard on WBBM 780.