The Cubs came out of the gate with the most perfectly-orchestrated top of the first inning: taking lots of pitches to burn the starting pitcher, accepting walks from a guy who gives them, and racking up hits and runs. The end result was a 42-pitch, high-stress inning for Carlos Martinez and a 5-0 lead for the Cubs.
And then Travis Wood gave up a grand slam in the bottom of the first to Mark Reynolds. Wood actually steadied himself from there, and held the Cardinals scoreless for the next four innings as the Cubs built an 8-4 lead. Unfortunately Wood gave up three straight hits to start the 6th, two of which translated to runs.
The bullpen made things much worse from there (Pedro Strop and Zac Rosscup couldn’t miss a bat), and the result was one of the more painful losses I can recall in quite a while.
I want to point out the good things in the game – Kris Bryant’s incredible patience, Anthony Rizzo’s power, Miguel Montero’s production, Addison Russell’s heads up play and homer – but I just can’t. Not beyond those mentions, anyway. I’m just bummed.