It doesn’t feel like it in a game the Cubs won going away, but they actually had to come back from two separate 3-0 deficits in this one. And look, the Reds’ pitching is terrible. But it’s still a credit to the Cubs’ offense chipping away, and the bullpen locking things down.
He’s been good enough in the second half that I’m perfectly willing to throw this John Lackey start away.
With the Cubs mounting a rally in the 7th, Javy Baez came to the plate with the bases loaded, two outs, and the Cubs down a couple. It was the kind of situation where Baez’s more aggressive tendencies tend to shine through, and they did for two pitches. Then, he patiently accepted the wild balls designed to allow him to get himself out, and fouled one off before take a 3-2 pitch the other way for a game-tying single. It was all kinds of impressive, and immediately made you dream about a Javy Baez who also works great at bats.
I also loved seen Ben Zobrist come in and drive one deep to the opposite power alley, batting right-handed, and scoring the lead two runs with a double.
Things got very tense in the 9th inning when Kris Bryant and Anthony Rizzo were hit in back-to-back at bats – the Bryant one went off his hand/wrist, and sounded very scary. He stayed in the game to run the bases, but did not come back out in the bottom of the frame to play defense. Hopefully he’s OK. (UPDATE: X-Rays negative, but we’ll see what’s what tomorrow.)
Because of that, and because the bench was used up, the Cubs had to get … creative defensively: Anthony Rizzo played third base. It wasn’t all fun and games because the inning got a little out of hand from Felix Pena, and Rizzo didn’t get a chance to make a play.
But the Cubs did pull out the win, their fourth in a row. Huzzah!