Chicago Cubs Recap: Cards avoid sweep with a 4-3 comeback win
Cubs’ pen falters as Cards rally for 4-3 win to avoid sweep
Going into the bottom of the eighth inning, it looked as if the Chicago Cubs (80-58) were well on their way to completing a three-game sweep of their division rivals, the St. Louis Cardinals (88-51), but the Cubs bullpen would once again let a lead fall through the cracks as a two-run double from Stephen Piscotty gave the Redbirds a 4-3 lead.
Pedro Strop (2-6, 3.22 ERA) came into the eighth with a two-run lead, but would quickly find himself in a hole after a one-out walk. Greg Garcia followed with a single and that would cause Strop to exit the game for Clayton Richards (3-1, 4.26 ERA).
Richards’ first offering to Carpenter would be costly, scoring Reynolds to inch the Cards within one run with an RBI single. Richardson would exit for Fernando Rodney (6-5, 5.27 ERA) who couldn’t stop the Cubs bleeding. Stephen Piscotty drilled a double over Fowler’s head in center to bring in two to put St. Louis up 4-3.
Trevor Rosenthal came into the ninth for the Cards and would slam the door on the Chicago Cubs and save the game by a score of 4-3.
The Cubs jumped on the board early with back-to-back RBI doubles by Anthony Rizzo and Tommy La Stella for an early 2-0 lead for their starting pitcher Jon Lester.
The Cardinals answered back in their half of the first with an RBI single by Jason Heyward, scoring Matt Carpenter who led off the inning with a triple.
Lester would get that run back for the Cubs as he helped his own cause by getting a base hit of his own and would eventually score on an RBI single by Dexter Fowler, giving the Cubs the 3-1 advantage after two innings.
Lester (9-10, 3.59 ERA) pitched seven innings, allowing only the one run off of just two hits while walking one and striking out seven. He certainly had a winning performance, but would have to settle for the no-decision.
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The game also saw Kyle Schwarber return to the starting lineup, unfortunately for Schwarber he would go 0-for-4 at the plate with each out being a punch out.
It was a different lineup for Joe Maddon‘s Cubs, as Kris Bryant got the day off while Javier Baez took over at third and Starlin Castro covered second. Baez made a few nice plays with his glove and showed off his great range at the hot corner.
The Chicago Cubs (80-58) visit the city of Brotherly Love as they take on the Philadelphia Phillies (54-85) in a four-game series. Cy Young candidate, Jake Arrieta (18-6, 2.03 ERA) toes the rubber for the Cubs while the Phillies will look to their young left-hander Adam Morgan (5-5, 4.42 ERA).
Arrieta will look to continue his dominance against the Phillies. He has not surrendered an earned run over his last four starts. Morgan is coming off a rough outing against the Boston Red Sox where he was charged with six runs in 6 1/3 innings pitched.
The last time these two teams faced, it was the Phillies sweeping the Cubs in the three-game series. It was also the last time Arrieta lost a game.