SWEEP! SWEEP! SWEEP!
After the week from hell, I cannot overstate how exciting and gratifying this series against the Cardinals has been.
For the third straight game, the Cubs found themselves in a big hole early, only to come back and win the game. This one required a little detour late, with the Cardinals, themselves, rallying to tie things up. But pinch hitter Jon Jay drove in Anthony Rizzo in the 7th inning, Carl Edwards Jr. was brilliant in the 8th, and Koji Uehara subbed perfectly for Wade Davis in the 9th.
The Cubs got four of their runs thanks to two Ian Happ homers, which is just awesome. He’d obviously been scuffling for a while, and, much like Kyle Schwarber’s grand slam yesterday, the homers don’t mean Happ is totally over the hump. But it had to feel so good. And the talent is obviously there.
Kyle Hendricks was not at his best tonight, and when he doesn’t have his best command, things will be dicey. And when the strike zone inexplicably does not include the last four inches of the plate on the outer half, he’s *really* going to be in trouble. So it was tonight, and a four-run fourth inning – after a whole lot of hard contact before that – ended Hendricks’ night early.
He was pulled, incidentally, in favor of Albert Almora, pinch hitting with two outs and two on in the bottom of the inning, who came through, continued the two out rally long enough for Happ to hit his second homer.
Great game. Great win. Great series. Great sweep. The Cubs hadn’t done that to the Cardinals in Chicago in over 10 years.