Game One Hundred Seven – Cubs 2 Diamondbacks 10, Game One
Game One Hundred Eight – Cubs 7 Diamondbacks 3, Game Two
The events that took place at Wrigley on Thursday have been happening all season….one game was horrendous and the next game was a gem. Carlos Marmol barely made it out of the 1st inning and Juan Mateo did not allow a hit until the 3rd inning and earned his first Major League victory, with a little help from Matt Murton, who had a huge day.
Game One – The Cubs were beaten for the second time this season by Juan Cruz and another former Cub, Luis Gonzalez, pounded Marmol and scored 5 runs in the 1st inning. They had plenty of opportunities against the former Cub but they could not get those runners in from scoring position. Marmol threw 38 pitches in the 1st and before the Cubs stepped to the plate, they were down 5-0.
Game Two – Matt Murton went 4-4 with 4 doubles and 5 RBI’s and tied a Major League record….Billy Williams was the last Cub to hit 4 doubles in a game back in 1969. Juan Mateo had a better than decent Major League debut, gave the Cubs a few innings and earned the victory. Game One – Carlos Marmol continued having difficulties throwing strikes and gave up 6 runs over the first 2 innings. In the 1st inning alone Marmol surrendered 5 runs on 3 hits, walked 3 and hit a batter. Marmol threw 97 pitches on the day, which is not bad considering he threw 66 in the first 2 innings. Marmol has very good stuff and a huge upside but he continues to have trouble with repeating his delivery and that is causing him to have little, if no, command. He did cut down on his walks (3) but he threw a wild pitch and hit a batter. With a little time Marmol could be something special.
The Cubs offense recorded 10 hits but only scored 2 runs. They had their chances….they left 13 on base and runners in scoring position in the 2nd and 3rd innings and they had bases loaded with 1-out in the 5th and 6th innings. But double plays and lack of fundamental ball cost them those very important runs. Neither Marmol nor Cruz pitched well at all, the D’Backs just took advantage of Marmol’s mistakes.
Game Two – Juan Mateo pitched a good game, nothing spectacular, just a good game….and that is exactly what the Cubs needed. Mateo retired the first 5 batters he faced and did not give up his first hit until the 3rd inning. Like the rest of the Cubs’ pitchers, Mateo allowed a lot of free passes; Mateo walked 3 in 5 innings of work. On the day, Mateo gave up 3 runs, 2 earned, on 6 hits and struck out 2 The Cubs might have found another arm to throw into the mix for next year.
The Cubs pounded out another 12 hits in the second game led by Matt Murton, who has been on fire at the plate lately. Murton has to get playing time, the Cubs have to see how and if he fits into their plans for the future. Murton did “hit a wall” earlier in the season but as of late he looks more like the player that was so impressive last year at this time.
The defense led by Phil Nevin and Ryan Theriot’s double plays helped keep the Cubs in the game early and the bullpen did not allow the Diamondbacks to add to their total on the day.
Juan Pierre had a good day at the park, 4-10 with a run scored. Ryan Theriot was 3-5 with a RBI and a run scored. Angel Pagan was 2-8 with 3 runs scored. Matt Murton will never forget the second game of this twin bill.
The season is exactly 2/3 over after the second game of the double header….just 1/3 left to go.
Carlos Zambrano takes the hill on Friday in search of his 10th in a row, to do that the Cubs will have to put up some runs against a rookie left-hander from Pittsburgh.
From the FYI Department – Mark Grace sung the 7th inning stretch on Thursday. Before singing he said, “it is good to be home” and during the “root, root” line he did shout “CUBBIES”, so maybe there is hope yet.