White Sox and Sale too much for Lester and Cubs in 5-1 loss


128. Final. 1. 9. 5

Sale outduels Lester in the battle of the team’s number one starters

The first inning was the start and essentially the end of the game for the Chicago Cubs. The White Sox leadoff hitter Adam Eaton got Jon Lester and the Cubs on their heels early with a leadoff double to start the game. The next batter, third baseman Tyler Saladino nailed a line drive triple to right field, scoring Eaton for a 1-0 early lead.

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Jose Abreu followed with a single to left, easily scoring Saladino for the 2-0 lead.

Lester would settle in after that for the next five innings, not allowing another run and only one hit until the seventh inning.

In the seventh, Lester started to show fatigue and allowed what was a close pitching duel turn into a mess. A lead-off single to Melky Cabrera, then a throwing error on Cubs rookie Kris Bryant allowed two men on with no outs for Alexei Ramirez to single in Cabrera for a 3-0 lead.

The next batter, Tyler Flowers, would knock a two-run double to make the score 5-0.

Lester would finish the inning without any more damage done. He’d finish the day with seven innings pitched, allowing five runs, four earned, off of seven hits, eight strikeouts, and no walks allowed. With the loss, Lester will fall to 4-8 with a 3.59 ERA.

As for Lester’s counterpart, Chris Sale, he was as dominant as he’s been all year. The Cubs couldn’t generate anything off the Sox left-handed All-Star. He’d also pitched seven innings, allowing one run, six hits, one walk, while striking out 10 batters. With the win, Sale goes to 8-4 with a 2.72 ERA.

The Cubs scored their only run off of Sale in the bottom of the seventh inning. A leadoff single by Starlin Castro would lead to him scoring on a one-out double by Jonathan Herrera.

Cubs all-star first baseman Anthony Rizzo led the Cubs with a 2-for-3 day at the plate.

Game Note:

The Chicago Cubs catcher Miguel Montero exited the game in the third inning after he struck out swinging in the top of the second inning. MLB.com and Chicago Cubs beat writer Carrie Muskat reported that Montero left the game due to a jammed thumb.

The injury seemed to occur when Montero had to reach for a wild pitch; he stayed in the game to take his at-bat but would not go on any further.

With David Ross now on the disabled list, hopefully, the jammed thumb isn’t a big issue for Montero or the Chicago Cubs.

Up Next: 

Tomorrow afternoon in the final game of the three-game cross-town rivalry series, Jake Arrieta (9-5, 2.80 ERA) and the Chicago Cubs (46-40) do battle with Jose Quintana (4-8, 3.69 ERA) and the Chicago White Sox (41-44).

Arrieta is 5-1 with a 2.27 ERA over his last seven starts. This year at Wrigley Field, he is 3-4 with a 3.27 ERA in eight starts. With the low earned run average, you can see he’s been the victim of low run support. Over his career versus the White Sox, Arrieta is 1-1 with a 5.49 ERA in four career starts.

Quintana is coming off one of his best starts of the season against the Toronto Blue Jays, where he surrendered only two runs and four hits over eight full innings. Like Arrieta, Quintana didn’t get the run support he needed and was on the losing end of that start. Versus the Chicago Cubs, Quintana is 0-1 with a 3.46 ERA in two starts. One of those starts was in Wrigley Field, where he went seven innings and allowed only one hit and one run.

The game time is set for 1:20 CT and the game can be seen on ABC 7 for the Cubs feed or CSN for the White Sox feed.

Next: Rumors: Breaking down possible pitching options