When the Cubs were trailing 3-0 in the 6th inning, and Addison Russell’s 107 mph rocket with two men on and one man out was caught at third base, I started sketching out the Enhanced Box Score write up, and in frustration, composed this paragraph:
I don’t even know what to say in this space, because I’m sick of saying it, and you’re sick of hearing it. The Cubs missed opportunities today against a bad pitcher, and that is their fault. At the same time, they had absolutely brutally bad luck with several well-struck batted balls that found gloves. It’s exasperating to be in this position, because if you point out the bad luck, people shred you as though that’s the ONLY thing you’re noting. Even if you also say, “Yo, the Cubs keep blowing chances to score and keep losing winnable games that they NEED to be winning.”
I wouldn’t say I was being irrational in that moment, but the beauty of baseball is that not but a few pitches later, Jon Jay hit a game-tying, pinch-hit homer.
Then the Cubs went on to score four more runs and win the game going away.
The Cubs did not manage to score against Blake Snell, who came into the game with an ERA well over five, and peripherals that totally supported that figure. So, again, there was reason for frustration, even as the Cubs did draw a ton of walks and smack the ball pretty good.
It wasn’t until the Rays’ bullpen came in that the Cubs finally broke through, with Jay’s blast, and two-run knocks from Ian Happ and Anthony Rizzo.
Fortunately, John Lackey managed to keep the Cubs in the game, allowing three through six, and then the Cubs’ bullpen finished things off.