Zach Davies was lucky (but scoreless). The Cubs bats were quiet (yet again). David Ross was ejected (but right to be angry). Adam Wainwright was good (but largely because of a ridiculous strike zone). And David Bote/the Cubs were screwed out of a terrible call at third base (no further comment, it was just really, really bad and I don’t want to lose sight of that).
Anyway, that’s the first 9.0 innings of the game. Got it? We’re skipping way ahead.
The first Cubs base runner to reach scoring position tonight (Willson Contreras) came via the extra-innings rule. That part, in isolation, is really bad, as the Cubs failed to do much of anything versus Adam Wainwright all night. Generous strike zone or not, that isn’t what you want to see from a team who scored just 1 run on 5 hits yesterday. But after Anthony Rizzo moved Contreras to third, Javy Baez stepped up and delivered the best moment of the night: an extra-inning, game-winning blast to straight away center field. It shut the ESPN broadcasters right up about his swing and miss stuff (Watch it, ESPN, only we can call Javy out for that) and it tilted the series in the Cubs favor.
Craig Kimbrel, who got the last out of the 9th, and had to hit for himself in the 10th, came in for the save and the Cubs got the win (not before Willson Contreras took a MEAN 99 MPH fastball off his wrist … I have no idea how he stayed in the game).
Chicago is once again two games over .500 and just 2.0 games behind the Cardinals in the NL Central. If they had lost, they would’ve been .500 and tied with the Brewers for third, 4.0 games behind the Cardinals.
So, yeah, that was a big swing of the bat. What a great ending to an otherwise extremely frustrating night. Whew. I feel good.