Castro does it again for the Cubs
The Chicago Cubs Starlin Castro can’t hear your calls for him to be traded, he’s too busy collecting game-winning RBIs. In another pitcher’s duel, the Cubs shortstop beat out an infield single to score Anthony Rizzo for the go-ahead run in the 11th to give them their second win in a row. The offense was again sluggish, but the pitching was masterful for the second consecutive shutout.
The Cubs (41-35) and their pitching staff have been operating at maximum efficiency, and Jon Lester didn’t let them down today. In need of a quality start, he got just that as he went seven scoreless while striking out seven. But he was matched on the other side by the 42-year old Bartolo Colon who went seven as well, allowing just three hits and whiffing eight.
The Mets (40-39) looked to have a great opportunity to take the lead in the eighth with runners on second and third following a David Murphy double. But a failed squeeze play left Ruben Tejada hung out to dry. As Murphy moved to third, Tejada ran past the base, and Miguel Montero tagged out both, and the umpire ruled both out.
This led to some confusion, as Cubs’ skipper Joe Maddon came out for clarification. In the end, Murphy was left at third and only Tejada was ruled out. The inning ended as Darren Ceciliani struck out.
The Cubs almost blew their chance in the 11th with some poor baserunning. With Anthony Rizzo at second and Kris Bryant on first, Chris Coghlan lined a single to right. Third base coach Gary Jones held Rizzo, and Bryant took too aggressive a turn around third and was tagged out. But Castro’s infield single saved the day, and Montero added an RBI single as insurance.
Carlos Torres (2-4, 4.60) took the loss for the Mets while Jason Motte (6-1, 2.93) was credited with the win and Justin Grimm the save. But it was a team effort, as the bullpen was perfect again with the likes of Hector Rondon, Pedro Strop and James Russell pitching in.
The Cubs’ Jake Arrieta (7-5, 2.94) goes to the mound to face the Mets’ Jacob de Grom (8-5, 2.15). Arrieta comes off an outing in which he was good enough to win, but the Cardinals rallied after he completed his seven innings of one-run ball for the win.