Enhanced Box Score: Astros 6, Cubs 4 – May 15, 2023
The late injury(?) to Cody Bellinger on an otherwise spectacular catch has me all distracted from the game, itself, which was obviously disappointing in its own right.
Jameson Taillon remains a mix of bad luck and bad pitches. It’s impossible not to notice the dinks and dunks falling in for hits, but it’s also impossible not to notice the belt high pitches that leave him vulnerable to big innings. So it was in the first, when he gave up four. It wasn’t all his fault – a rough route in left field by Christopher Morel on a two-out fly ball preceded all the scoring, and two of the hits were nothingburger bloops – but he can be better. I think he will be. But gotta see it. At least he settled in after the first.
I appreciated that the Cubs didn’t let that sour first inning stop them from coming back against Framber Valdez, one of the best starters in baseball. Great job grinding him down through four innings. Morel’s homer was solid. Enjoyable. The game was tied for a while. Cubs couldn’t do anything against the Astros bullpen, though.
By contrast, the Cubs bullpen couldn’t get the same set of perfect performances. It only takes one guy faltering. Michael Fulmer was about a foot away from a clean inning, but every foot counts, which mean a two-out single preceded a game-deciding homer by Alex Bregman. I just shake my head.