Cubs’ Jake Arrieta cruises in 7-1 win over the Braves at Wrigley Field
By David Miniel
Arrieta becomes first pitcher to record 15 wins
It was a beautiful day in the Windy City, and things got even better when the Chicago Cubs were able to snap their three-game skid behind yet another quality start from Jake Arrieta in Thursday evening’s 7-1 win over the Atlanta Braves.
Granted, the Braves (53-68) are one of the lowest scoring teams in all of baseball, this Cubs (68-51) pitching staff has made some of the league’s weakest clubs look like postseason contenders. That wasn’t the case tonight with Joe Maddon‘s ace right-hander.
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Arrieta (15-6, 2.30 ERA) became the first pitcher in the league to record 15 wins while working six scoreless innings on four hits and recording a 7/1 K/BB ratio prior to being replaced by Travis Wood in the seventh inning.
Chicago’s second baseman, Chris Coghlan finished the game 2-for-4 with an RBI single and triple to back his starting pitcher. Coghlan drove in Addison Russell during the third inning to begin the scoring and came around to score on a three-run homer by first baseman Anthony Rizzo just seconds later.
Rizzo’s 24th home run of the season was on the first pitch delivered from Sterling and Minooka, Illinois-native, Mike Foltynewicz. Foltynewicz (4-5, 6.06 ERA) was tagged for all seven earned runs on eight hits including two big flies in only 4 2/3 innings.
He did, however, manage to record six strikeouts on top of hitting 98, 99, and 100 miles per hour on the gun. Once this kid is able to keep opposing teams under control, he’s going to do great things for this organization in the long run.
The second long ball he gave up came off the bat of Russell in the fourth inning – it was his eighth home run of his rookie campaign that pushed Arrieta’s lead out to 5-0. This team has been a home run club over the last couple of weeks.
Catcher Miguel Montero nearly joined in on the air show but missed a two-run homer by at least one-to-two ft. Instead, he found himself in scoring position with an RBI double which scored Coghlan from third to make it 7-0.
With the bases loaded and Justin Grimm on the mound, Adonis Garcia was able to break-up the shutout on a sacrifice fly to Jorge Soler in right field to cut this huge lead down to six runs.
Tommy Hunter entered the game in the ninth and struck out the final two batters. The Cubs have themselves another four-game lead over the Giants in the N.L. Wild Card race and trail the second-place Pirates by as many games.