Cubs Breakout the Bats … and End the Streak – Cubs 11, Padres 7

Game Forty-Eight – Cubs 11, Padres 7
WP – Randy Wells (1-1) LP – Alex Hinshaw (0-1, BS 1) Save – None

wflag.jpgOn a day with the wind howling out at Wrigley Field, the Cubs ended their 12-game losing streak and posted their first win in two weeks.

The Cubs and Padres went back and forth all afternoon and combined for 18 runs on 26 hits and eight home runs … the eight home runs ended up just three short of the National League record. With all of the offense from both teams, the difference in the game for the Cubs came down to two plays.

With the Cubs up by one and the tying run on third with one out in the seventh, Ian Stewart fielded a slow roller off the bat of Everth Cabrera and threw out Chase Headley at the plate to preserve the one-run lead. Later in the inning, Shawn Camp replaced Randy Wells with runners on first and third with two down and struck out Jesus Guzman swinging on three pitches to end the inning.

After scoring just 12 runs on the recently completed six-game road trip, the Cubs scored 11 runs on 14 hits on Monday afternoon. Eight of the Cubs’ 14 hits went for extra bases and four of them left the old ballyard.

Alfonso Soriano (3-for-4 with a home run, a double, a home run, three RBI and two runs scored) hit the longest dinger of the day. Soriano launched his sixth homer of the season in the sixth. The ball ended up on Waveland and Soriano’s two-run shot gave the Cubs an 8-7 lead.

Darwin Barney (1-for-4 with a home run), Ian Stewart (2-for-4 with a home run and three RBI) and Starlin Castro (2-for-5 with a home run, three RBI, a stolen base and two runs scored) hit the Cubs’ other three home runs. Castro cranked his fourth of the season (second in as many days) in the eighth; a two-run shot that landed in the back of the bleachers and gave the Cubs a little breathing room on a hitter’s day at Wrigley.

Bryan LaHair (3-for-4 with a double, a RBI and three runs scored) and David DeJesus (2-for-5 with two triples and a run scored) also record multi-hit games. LaHair recorded hits in each of his last three at bats. The only out LaHair made Monday drove in the Cubs’ second run of the game.

Three of the Cubs four homers were with men on base. The Cubs did not manage a single walk on the afternoon and finished the game 5-for-9 with runners in scoring position and left three on base.

Travis Wood could not keep the ball down or in the park in his third start of the season. Wood served up four home runs Monday afternoon with all but one being a solo shot. Wood allowed six runs on seven hits (four home runs) with three walks and four strikeouts in five innings. Two of the three free passes Wood issued scored as he struggled with his command (85 pitches, 51 for strikes). Wood left with the game tied at six.

Randy Wells picked up his first big league win of the season in relief of Travis Wood. Wells was not sharp and the Padres hit him pretty hard. Wells allowed the Padres to take a 7-6 lead on a double by Will Venable in the sixth. Wells was the beneficiary of Soriano’s blast, Stewart’s defense and Shawn Camp’s strikeout. Wells allowed one run on three hits and hit a batter in 1 2/3 innings (34 pitches, 17 strikes).

Shawn Camp, James Russell and Casey Coleman pitched the final 2 1/3 innings and allowed just two hits and no runs.

With Monday’s win, the Cubs improved to 16-32 on the season …

Travis Wood began his day by striking out Will Venable swinging. Wood then issued his first free pass of the afternoon to Chris Denorfia. Wood found his command again and struck out Yonder Alonso for the second out. Carlos Quentin made his first at bat in a Padres’ uniform and ripped a double into left. Denorfia scored all the way from first and Quentin ended up at third when Starlin Castro’s throw got away from Blake Lalli. Wood struck out Chase Headley looking for the third out. Even with Wood striking out the side in the first, it was apparent early on that it was going to be a short day for Travis Wood.

David DeJesus led off the bottom of the first with a triple off the wall in right. Starlin Castro ripped Jeff Suppan’s first pitch into center and plated DeJesus with the tying run. On the first pitch to Mather, Castro swiped second. Joe Mather then tried to bunt his way on, settled for a sacrifice and Castro ended up at third with one out. Bryan LaHair pulled a 2-2 pitch to second, Castro scored and the Cubs took a 2-1 lead. Soriano grounded out to third on a 3-2 pitch to end the first inning.

Travis Wood retired the Padres in order in the second inning.

After Ian Stewart grounded out to second, Darwin Barney hit Jeff Suppan’s first pitch into the bleachers in left center and gave the Cubs a 3-1 lead. Blake Lalli struck out and Travis Wood flied out to center to end the inning.

After two, Travis Wood and the Cubs had a 3-1 lead.

Wood retired Suppan on a swinging bunt up the first baseline to start the third … then started serving up longballs.

Will Venable cut the Cubs’ lead in half with one swing of the bat … a homer to left. Chris Denorfia followed with a single to right but Alonso lined out to left and Quentin popped out to LaHair to end the Padres’ third.

The Cubs did nothing in the bottom of the third.

Chase Headley led off the fourth and tied the game at three. Headley cranked a 1-0 pitch over the wall in center. Nick Hundley fouled out to LaHair for the first out.

Everth Cabrera broke up the 3-3 tie with his first homer of the season. Wood fell behind 2-0 and Cabrera made him pay. Andy Parrino lined out to third then Wood walked Jeff Suppan with two outs. But the mistake to the pitcher did not hurt Wood, Venable grounded out to short to end the inning.

With the Cubs down 4-3, Bryan LaHair led off the fourth with a double to left center. Alfonso Soriano followed with a double to left that plated LaHair with the tying run. Ian Stewart put together one of his better at bats of the season that resulted in a long home run. Suppan fell behind Stewart 2-0 before evening the count at 2-2. Stewart then fouled off four straight 3-2 offerings before getting all of the tenth pitch of the at bat. Stewart cranked a two-run shot well over the wall in center and gave the Cubs a 6-4 lead.

Darwin Barney (ground out to third), Blake Lalli (ground out to second) and Travis Wood (swinging strikeout) went down in order after Stewart’s homer to end the inning.

After four, the Cubs had a 6-4 lead.

Travis Wood retired Chris Denorfia and Yonder Alonso quickly to start the fifth. As Ferguson Jenkins always said, you can’t walk batters on a day when the wind is blowing out at Wrigley. Wood issued a two out walk to Carlos Quentin and Chase Headley tied the game with his second homer of the day … a two-run shot to left that made it a 6-6 game. Nick Hundley followed with a double but Cabrera grounded out to short to end the inning.

The Cubs did nothing in the home half of the fifth.

Randy Wells took over in the sixth and fell behind Andy Parrino 3-0. Parrino doubled to left on a 3-2 pitch. Suppan bunted Parrino to third. With the infield in, Will Venable ripped a 1-0 pitch down the right field line. Venable ran into LaHair and was awarded second on what would have been a double. Parrino scored on the play and gave the Padres a 7-6 lead. Yonder Alonso reached on an error by Ian Stewart but with runners on first and third with two down, Quentin grounded out to LaHair to end the inning.

Alex Hinshaw replaced Suppan to start the sixth. LaHair greeted the Padres’ reliever by blooping a 0-2 pitch into left for a single. Alfonso Soriano cranked a 1-2 pitch over the wall in left, out of the park and onto Waveland Avenue and gave the Cubs an 8-7 lead. Stewart (swinging strikeout), Barney (ground out to short) and Lalli (ground out to second) went down in order after Soriano’s blast to end the inning.

Randy Wells stayed in and started the seventh by giving up a double (right field) to Chase Headley. Nick Hundley hit a 2-1 pitch to deep center. Mather hauled the ball in. Headley tagged and advanced to third with one out.

With the tying run on third, Dale Sveum brought his infield in. Wells fell behind Everth Cabrera 3-1. Cabrera then hit a slow roller toward third on Wells’ next pitch. Headley broke for the plate as Stewart fielded the ball. Stewart threw home and Lalli applied the tag for the second out.

On the first pitch to Andy Parrino, Cabrera stole second then advanced to third on a 2-2 pitch from Wells that was in the dirt. Wells hit Parrino on the next pitch. Dale Sveum went to his pen and brought in Shawn Camp to face pinch-hitter Jesus Guzman.

Shawn Camp struck out Guzman swinging on three pitches to end the seventh.

Reed Johnson hit for Shawn Camp and led off the bottom of the seventh with a single to center off Luke Gregerson. Johnson took off for second on the first pitch to DeJesus, it appeared to be a hit and run. DeJesus swung at and missed the pitch but Johnson slid in safe with a big insurance run. DeJesus smoked a 2-2 pitch into right center that Denorfia ran down for the second out. Johnson tagged and advanced to third.

Gregerson made Starlin Castro look bad on his first two pitches. Castro fell behind 0-2 but did not miss Gregerson’s third pitch. Castro launched the 0-2 mistake that got too much of the plate and deposited the ball onto the last row of the bleachers in left … and the Cubs took a 10-7 lead.

Joe Mather lined out to Gregerson for the second out. LaHair and Soriano reached on back-to-back singles. Bud Black went to his pen and brought in Miles Mikolas.

Ian Stewart ripped a 1-0 pitch back up the middle and off Parrino’s glove into center. LaHair scored and the Cubs took an 11-7 lead. Darwin Barney flied out to center to end the seventh.

James Russell gave up a one-out single to Chris Denorfia in the eighth … but that was all. Venable bunted back to Russell to start the inning, Alonso popped a 3-2 pitch to Castro for the second out and Quentin struck out swinging.

Blake Lalli grounded out to third and Reed Johnson struck out swinging to start the eighth. David DeJesus hit what appeared to be a routine fly to center but the wind kept pushing the ball. The ball hit on the track and DeJesus ended up at third with his second triple of the game. Castro flied out to right to end the inning.

The Cubs went to the ninth with an 11-7 lead.

Casey Coleman gave up a leadoff single to Chase Headley on a 3-2 pitch. Nick Hundley blooped a 0-1 pitch to Barney for the first out. Cabrera grounded out to second … and Andy Parrino popped out to Castro down the left field line to end the game.

Cubs Win!

Box Score from Yahoo Sports

As of this writing, Jeff Samardzija is scheduled to face Eric Stults in game two Tuesday afternoon. The Padres might have to skip Stults but have not announced their decision. Stults was hit with a comebacker in his last start.

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Quote of the Day

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  • paulcatanese

    Just the way it happened Neil, good post. It took a long time coming.

    • Neil

      Thanks Paul

  • CubsTalk

    Start printing those World Series tickets, the Cubs are on their way!

    • John_CC

       Twit, twit tweet.

  • CubsTalk

    It seems Theo & Jed will go after pitching in the draft and thru trades.  Have the feelers out already for Dempster.  And they only way Dempster stays with the Cubs if he signs for $4 million per year.  I doubt that, so he will go bye bye.  Dempster is 36, not much gas left in the tank on him.  But he will command at least two high prospects from playoff teams.  Teams where Dempster might go to are the Dodgers, Yankees, Nationals, Phillies.

  • Ripsnorter1

    I was shocked that Casey Coleman threw several pitches 93-94 MPH. I was watching the Padres broadcast and consequently, their radar gun. But I was impressed. I didn’t think he could do it.

    • brent carmona

      He learned a four seamer last season, so he throws that one at 92-94 and the two seamer w great movement comes in 89-92. I’m not counting this guy out as a starter, but if not that he could b a 7th inning guy at worst, I think.

      • gary3411

         Yep, they are 2 different pitches, the four seamer has always been 92-93 when he throws it.

    • Neil

       Thank you for pointing this out.

    • GaryLeeT

       Nice to see him take that closer audition seriously. Sure would be nice to find a nugget of gold in that mountain crap.

    • Ripsnorter1

      I had heard via Keith Moreland that Coleman had changed his delivery in search of more heat, and apparently, he found it. 

      Like I said, I’m impressed. 

      • Zonk

        He also has a somewhat deceptive motion.

        I didn’t think he was worth anything, but he’s getting results this year. 

    • CubsTalk

       I was shocked to know Coleman was still on this club.

  • J Daniel

    GREAT summary as always!  I really enjoy reading your updates as they are always informative.

    • Neil

      Thank you.

  • Josh

    Anyone have updates on Rizzo’s injury?

    • Neil

      The last update I saw/heard was Rizzo is day-to-day. The X-Rays did not show any damage.

      If he felt something in his wrist, they should really be careful. Nothing wrong with him getting a few days off then testing it in BP.

      • Dorasaga

        Boy o’boy… At least that kept Neil busy updating. A big thanks, Neil.

  • Ripsnorter1

    Jeff Samardzija has a 4.55 ERA in 5 starts in day games, with opponents hitting .274 against him; in his 4 night-game starts, he has 1.32 ERA with opponents batting .188.

    • matthew8510

      well winds are gonna be wsw at 20 to 30 mph is that out or in?

      • matthew8510

        i think thats blowing out

        • gary3411


  • cubtex

    How about Soriano over the last 20 or so games? He now has 6 HR’s. He can still hit! I said he would catch LaHair in HR’s by early July…..but I think it could be June.

    • paulcatanese

      Agree, and his fielding is not all that bad either. La Hair as you had mentioned earlier needs a new glove, this one is not making contact:)

      • Ripsnorter1

        Right. He strikes out with the bat and glove.

      • cubtex

        LaHair is a platoon DH in the AL on a small market team. He cannot field or hit lefties. Maybe the Mariners would want to give him another try?

    • cc002600

      not sure why you are on the Soriano bandwagon while continuing to bash LaHair. their numbers don’t even compare.

      OPS – Soriano – .745
      LaHair – .998

      and this is in the face of one of Soriano’s patented hot streaks that surely will end any day now while LaHair has been slumping.

      At the end of the day, it not’s close now and won’t be at the end of the year.

      • cubtex

        Soriano has a track record of success at the MLB level. I am not a fan of LaHair. He got an opportunity after several years in the minors…..but he is not an above average mlb player. You are seeing the flaws exposed now. You are right… will not even be close. Soriano will hit his usual 20+ while LaHair will be lucky to hit another 7 the rest of the year.

    • Tony_Hall

      Sounds like about the time that he was told to go to a lighter bat.

      • Ripsnorter1

        Exactly. His first HR came two games into the new bat, if I recall. Sveum wants him to go even lighter still. 

    • Zonk

       I think it actually complicates the LaHair/Rizzo/Soriano decisions coming up, because Soriano is probably the biggest decision affecting the team right now.

      At this point, you have to play Soriano, as he is suddenly hitting with a lighter bat, as Tony pointed out.  And, replacing him with LaHair would be a downgrade on defense (I can’t believe I typed those words, but it’s true)

      Soriano’s surge is another reason to leave Rizzo in Iowa. 

      • John_CC

         Someone will be traded. We know that isn’t Soriano. DeJesus is looking very good right now hitting and playing up to his career averages and has proven to be an excellent off-season signing by Hoyer and Theo. I think it would unfortunate to trade him now as he is one of the only professional hitters on the team, but he does have value. 

        If they really want to keep LaHair and put Rizzo in the lineup at the same time, I’m afraid LaHair will be in RF with DeJesus in CF or gone. 

        • Aaron

          agreed…also likely is Baker being dealt in favor of Valbuena

        • cubtex

          It will only be an excellent signing if they trade him for value. If they hang onto him and lose 95 to 100 games the next 2 years……how would that be considered an excellent signing?

          • John_CC

            You just can’t stand that DeJesus is playing well, can you?  He’s up to .290 BA and .380 OBP and pays solid defense. 

            Why do I think that no matter what the Cubs get in return, it will be a bust to you?

          • Aaron

            I don’t think he’s saying that at all…just that with everything going on at the time, it was seen as a bad move, especially with him coming off a horrible year and on the wrong side of 30.

            Because B Jax isn’t tearing things up right now, it softens the blow a bit but when you have him and Soriano long-term you’re blocking development. Hopefully that makes sense

          • John_CC

            If you haven’t noticed, cubtex takes every opportunity to point out the negative. At the moment, DeJesus is a big positive.

            Epstein gambled, “bought low” after a down year by an otherwise very consistent player. It is paying off.  And I don’t think you actually consider a 2 year $10M contract long term or immovable. 

            It appears that this move may work out just as they hoped.

          • cubtex

            If you consider realistic to be negative. I could care less that Theo won 2 WS for Boston. What has he done recently? Look at the Red Sox of today. Look at the decisions he has made over the last 3 years. He has constructed the worst Cubs team I have seen this year. His only good move he has done to date is the DeJesus signing? I think Rizzo will be another good one but he needs to do it at the mlb level.

          • cubtex

            I like that DeJesus is playing well. I wish LaHair was a better player. I wish Ian Stewart was playing better. I am a Cub fan and I want to get better. They will not get better if they do not trade the players who will not be moving forward with them for future pieces. I will not say the player is a bust if he isn’t. You were jumping up and down after the Z trade and I kept telling you he is a stiff. “But…..he is 25”
            I am just arguing the fact that the DeJesus signing will not be considered and excellent signing IF the Cubs don’t flip him for talent. Who cares if he bounces back to just above career averages if the club loses 95 games and they don’t get anything for him? That is my point.

          • John_CC

             I understand. And I was never “jumping up and down” over the Z trade, or for that matter any of the moves that Epstein/Hoyer made over the winter. None.

            I have just been observing, taking the good with the bad and waiting to see how things pan out.  Two months into the baseball season is not long enough to claim DeJesus is a great deal, LaHair is bum, etc.  And 6 months of personnel management is not long enough judge the moves the new team has made.

            My point is that everyone should just take a couple steps back and relax. EVERYONE knew that this season would be tough and that the Cubs would finish near the bottom. So what if it’s 90 or 100 Ls. What is the difference in the end? 

            Step back. Calm down.

          • Aaron

            I have to agree with you there….Stewart, T. Wood, Volstad, Sappelt, etc. just aren’t even the type of moves that Dallas Green made when he was trying to build a winner.

            The DeJesus signing was a decent move…now, but with his initial bad start to the year, coupled with his guaranteed money, it’s not as good as some might think. At 2 yrs, $10 million, that’s about 1 year guaranteed and $7 million too much. In other words, I believe he was about a $3 million player with an option year.

            I happen to agree with you that they need to capitalize on his newfound value prior to the deadline, or they could end up with a declining player next year that is impossible to move. 

            I also hope Maholm turns things around, and gives the Cubs much needed trade value near the deadline. Same goes for Marmol, who even if he comes back with a solid showing the rest of the year, still isn’t worth his contract, and will forever experience control issues…just isn’t the type of guy you keep around.

      • cubtex

        LaHair is not playing now vs. LHP. Sveum has already come to the conclusion he cannot hit it. I think the organization realizes that LaHair is not someone to be thought of going forward.

  • Josh

    Reportedly the Cubs are open to bringing Dempster back —

    • Zonk

      I think Dempster has alot of control over his fate.  He’s a 5 and 10 player, so whether the Cubs trade him is entirely up to him.

    • John_CC

       That’s lip service. There is no way the Cubs pay Dempster $12-14M for another year.  He is their best trade commodity, they only chance of returning a little talent.  He is having a career year and is 35 years old.  Hendry now, he would be working on 3 year extension right now.

  • Ripsnorter1

    I’d say that the Cubs are going to take this game from the Padres. 

    Boy, are they awful. You thing it is hard to watch the Cubs? This Padre mess really hurts the eyes.
    Stults, who starts today, will be lit up by the Cubs, even though he’s a LHP. He’s not a ML pitcher. The reason the Cubs could not hit LHP is because previously, their only power bat was LH hitting LaHair. But now Soriano has started to hit, and Mather ought to provides some pop. Add in a 30 MPH blowing out, and Darwin Barney looks to hit another one. 

    Meanwhile Samardzija may just no-hit this terrible bunch. Outside of Carlos Quentin, Will Venable and Chase Headley, they are a AAA team. Yonder Alonso has 1–count ’em, ONE!–tater! 

    With the wind blowing out, Cubs win 11-1.

    • Aaron

      sorry…you are sorely mistaken…Cubs lose…cannot hit lefties wind blowing out or not

      • cubtex

        Cmon Aaron. We have our lefty/righty platoon going. Mather at 3rd, Reed in CF, Baker at 1B and Koyie Hill at C. Hasn’t this platoon been great all year? lol

      • Ripsnorter1

        I didn’t lose this time. Now let’s talk about tomorrow: Dempster vs the youngster Bass.

        All Dempster has to do to win is walk Quentin every time. Nobody else on the roster is able to hit the ball out even if the wind is blowing out 50 mph. 

        Now the question: is he smart enough to do that? 
        Cubs win this one tomorrow to sweep the Pathetic Padres: 4-3.