Same Story, Different Day for Q’s Cubs – Cubs 1 Cardinals 9

Game Thirty-Six – Cubs 1 Cardinals 9
WP – Jaime Garcia (5-0) LP – Casey Coleman (1-3) Save – None

Less than 12 hours after scoring 11 runs on 17 hits, the Cubs overpaid and inconsistent offense managed only one run on nine hits in the series finale against the Cardinals. Once again the Cubs had chances to at least make the game interesting but they could not come through with runners in scoring position. The offense finished the game 1-for-9 with RISP and left eight on base.

With the offense struggling on a daily basis scoring runs, Thursday’s game was basically over after the Cardinals put up a five-spot against Casey Coleman in the second inning. Coleman could not throw strikes again and when he did find the strike zone, the Cardinals offense did not miss.

Coleman could not complete five innings of work. Quade pulled him with one out in the fifth after allowing six runs on nine hits with four walks and not a single strikeout. Coleman labored through his outing and pitched from behind in the count for a majority of his afternoon. Coleman tossed 82 pitches, 41 for strikes.

After Coleman departed the Cardinals tacked on three runs against Justin Berg and John Grabow.

The Cardinals pounded out 16 hits off Q’s pitching staff with a lineup that did not include Lance Berkman or Ryan Theriot.

The Cubs lone RBI came off the bat of Jeff Baker in the sixth. The Cubs loaded the bases with one out in the sixth but could not plate another run. Marlon Byrd extended his hitting streak to 13 games but once again the Cubs showed little to no power at the plate. Seven of the Cubs nine hits were singles … and with the wind blowing out, they did not hit a ball out of the park.

Starlin Castro and Reed Johnson both doubled … and neither one of them scored.

The Cubs could not close out another series with a win. After Thursday’s pounding at the hands of the Cardinals, Q’s squad is just 2-10 in the final game of a series … and a pathetic 2-6 in rubber games.

With Thursday’s loss, the Cubs slipped back to four games under .500 with a 16-20 mark …

Thursday’s game basically ended after the top of the second. Casey Coleman faced the minimum on 10 pitches in the first but gave up five runs in a 25-pitch second inning.

Matt Holliday led off the second with a home run to Waveland. Colby Rasmus followed with a single and advanced to third on a double to right by Yadier Molina.

Daniel Descalso grounded out to first and both runners held. Quade decided to intentionally walk Tyler Greene to load the bases with one out. But Coleman could not retire Jaime Garcia. The Cardinals pitcher singled to center and drove in Rasmus with the game’s second run.

With the bases still loaded, Coleman fell behind Jon Jay. Jay ripped his next pitch into right. Jay’s double plated Molina and Greene … and gave the Redbirds a commanding 4-0 lead. Allen Craig stepped in with runners on second and third with one out.

The Cardinals know how to plate a runner from third with less than two outs and Allen Craig proved it with a sac fly to right. Garcia tagged and scored the Cardinals fifth run.

Albert Pujols flied out to deep center to end the inning.

Coleman settled down and faced the minimum in the third. Coleman got himself into trouble in the fourth after issuing a two-out walk to Jaime Garcia. Jon Jay singled and Coleman walked Allen Craig to load the bases. Albert Pujols tapped back to Coleman to end the inning.

The Cardinals last run off Coleman came in the fifth. Colby Rasmus doubled to right center with one out. Yadier Molina singled to center and Rasmus scored … 6-0 Cardinals.

James Russell came in and retired Daniel Descalso before intentionally walking Tyler Greene. Russell retired Garcia on a fly out to left to end the inning.

The Cubs only run came in the sixth after a one-out single by Marlon Byrd. Aramis Ramirez followed with a single to right. Jeff Baker came through with a single to center that plated Byrd. Carlos Pena walked to load the bases with one-out.

Alfonso Soriano popped out to Nick Punto (infield fly rule) on a 1-0 pitch and Welington Castillo, who had a rough 2011 debut, struck out swinging to end the inning.

The Cardinals put the game well out of reach in the top of the seventh.

Yadier Molina led off with a double to left off Justin Berg … on a ball that Soriano could have made a play on. Descalso grounded out to second and advanced Molina to third. Tyler Greene doubled to right and plated Molina with the Cardinals’ seventh run.

After Garcia flied out to center, Quade replaced Berg with John Grabow.

The Cardinals continued hitting and scored two more runs off of Grabow. Jon Jay and Nick Punto (both lefties) singled and doubled to close out the Cardinals scoring.

Carlos Marmol got in a little work Thursday and retired the Cardinals in order in the ninth, with three strikeouts … the only inning the Cardinals went down 1-2-3 Thursday afternoon.

The Cubs must figure out a way to win a series … or two in the coming weeks. The Cubs are just 2-4 after the first six games of the homestand.

Box Score from Yahoo Sports

The Cubs open a three-game series Friday afternoon against the San Francisco Giants. Ryan Dempster versus Madison Bumgarner in game one.

Quote of the Day

"A mind troubled by doubt cannot focus on the course of victory." - Arthur Golden
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  • GaryLeeT

    “Yadier Molina led off with a double to left off Justin Berg … on a ball that Soriano could have made a play on.”

    I was going to comment on that play during Talkin’ Cubs Live, but did not think another bone headed defensive play by Soriano was worth it. But it was just so pathetic. He jogs over to the spot he thinks where the ball is going to hit off the wall, and just stands there waiting for it, when he could have just as easily put his back to the wall and caught it. The ball ended up hitting only 4 or 5 feet up the wall. That play was just about as lame as his bases loaded, 1 out, infield popup he hit.

    • studio179

      I notice a few jogging plays from Soriano ever since Quade got on him for lack of hustle recently. That worked! Whatever Quade said did not last. It is like Soriano tuned Quade out and continues doing it his way.

      • paulcatanese

        Quade vs Players,, “What we have here, is a failure to communicate”. 

        • studio179

          You posted my thunder! I was going to write that line two days ago but decided to hold off. It fits. Good job.  

    • John_CC

       It would be a really ugly stat if someone had kept track of all the balls that Soriano has not made plays on near the wall.  It has been a huge problem his entire LF career at Wrigley, it used to get commented on quite a bit but it seems now that it is just accepted that he will not get near the wall.

      I was listening to the game and Pat made the comment while calling the play, but it was just sort of a matter of fact, like “Soriano might have had a play on that but he didn’t get there…”

      Byrd is hitting and that is good. If Jackson’s injury is not severe and Byrd can sustain into July (which he can) he certainly should be a candidate for trade. I don’t think he is a big part of the problem on this team, I still like him, but they definitely do not need him next year. They have to start cutting bait, Byrd will probably (should be) the first to go, simply because he could have some value to a contender (as a 6 or 7 hitter) and the Cubs have a replacement in the wings.

  • Keith Moreland

    The injuries to Cashner and Wells really hurt, because Casey Coleman is being exposed to be what he is:  A replacement-level pitcher basically.  He was never a highly-rated prospect, and for good reason.  He just doesn’t have great stuff or command, and is basically just “a guy”. 

    • studio179

      True. The injuries to Wells and Cashner hurt the pitching side. The inability to drive in runners in scoring position is really hurting the offensive side. 

  • Anonymous47701

    Man, I hope Somebody In The American League would take Soriano off our hands, cause I am sick of seeing him play in a Cubs uniform! I don’t care if he is hitting 11 home runs or more, the guy can’t even stay in the strike zone, all he is good at doing is swinging away silly and hitting nothing. Until Soriano is out of Wrigley Field, he will only slow this team down and bring even more frustration to the fanbase.

    GET HIM OUTTA HERE!!

  • erniesarmy

    “With Thursday’s loss, the Cubs slipped back to four games under .500 with a 16-20 mark …”

    Oh, don’t worry Neil, this is just the beginning. The Cubs will be at least 15 games under .500 by the All-Star break.