I tried to throw some shade towards Cincinnati tonight, but I accidentally hit Derek Dietrich. Oops.
Anyway …. HELLLLLLLLLLLLL YEUUUUUSSSSSSSS!!!
OH BABY am I feeling good about that one. If you turned the game off before the finale, you missed Kyle Schwarber walking it off against Raisel Iglesias in extra innings. Whew. I needed that. The Cubs needed that. The Reds needed to know that the Cubs can still beat them. And, just, man. I’m pumped up and feeling good.
By the way … Do you think the Reds thought this was an important game? Manager David Bell pinch ran for Scooter Gennett in the top of the 9th inning … with pitcher Michael Lorenzen, who promptly stole second base on Craig Kimbrel and new Cubs catcher Martin Maldonado (who’s terrible throw was saved from the outfield by Javy Baez). That’s totally a “Our front office told us ‘It’s now or never'” type move, right?
Well, Lorenzen did end up on second base with two outs in the 9th and Jesse Winker behind him, but Craig Kimbrel (who was getting squeezed by the home plate umpire … but also didn’t have his best command) got Joey Votto to fly out to center to end the inning.
After that, the Cubs – er, well, one Cub – blew a big opportunity in the bottom half of the 9th. With 1 out, two strikes, and Robel Garcia on second base, Albert Almora Jr. went down swinging, but the ball flew all the way to the back stop as Garcia made his way to third. Unfortunatly, Almora didn’t see the dropped third and started running WAY too late. Had he seen it right away, he probably would’ve been safe at first or at least created some havoc that could’ve allowed Garcia to score the winning run from third. Whatever. Schwarber picked him up and all is well that ends well (for now).
Results-wise, you couldn’t have asked for much more from Alec Mills tonight. In fact, he delivered what we’re so often requesting from literally anyone in the rotation at any time: a quality start. Sure, he ran into some trouble early on, but he shaped up and departed with a shiny final line 6.0 IP, 5H, 3ER, 1BB, 6Ks. You will absolutely take that from your – what? – 7th starter.
Now, to be more specific, Mills flashed his good secondaries and below-average fastball tonight, getting some ugly strikeouts in the process, while also giving up a lot of hard contact and losing his command periodically. So by that measure, it was not exactly a standout performance. But again, that was a *very* useful performance from a spot starter against a team that’s given the Cubs trouble all season long.
Also, go away, Derek.