Game Twelve – Cubs 7, Giants 10 – 10 innings
WP – George Kontos (1-1) LP – Shawn Camp (0-1, BS 1) Save – Sergio Romo (7)
The Cubs handed the fourth and final game of the series to the Giants on Sunday afternoon. The Cubs made too many mistakes to a team that knows how to win ballgames, but they still had a chance to pull out the game.
The Giants were down to their last strike in the ninth with two outs and the bases empty before Shawn Camp hung a slider on a 2-2 pitch to Hunter Pence. Pence’s fourth home run of the season tied the game at seven, the first home run off Cubs pitching since April 7. After the Cubs failed to score in the bottom of the ninth, Shawn Camp’s issues continued in the tenth as he balked in the eventual winning run. The Giants scored two more and put the game out of reach.
The Cubs pitchers and catchers had a miserable day. Michael Bowden and Shawn Camp were hung with blown saves, Bowden and Edwin Jackson combined to throw a Major League record five wild pitches in the sixth inning and the Cubs gave the Giants two runs, one on a passed ball and one on a balk.
While the Cubs could have swept the series, they could have been swept as well. There were too many mental and physical mistakes throughout the series, even for a team building for the future. With that said, they cannot continue to run out a team that makes as many mistakes as the Cubs do on a daily basis.
Edwin Jackson had another rough outing. Jackson gave up five runs, four earned, on five hits with four walks, two wild pitches and nine strikeouts. Jackson was lifted in the sixth in line for the win before Michael Bowden gave it up. Bowden, with help from Dioner Navarro, allowed two inherited runners to score on a hit and a walk.
Hector Rondon allowed his first run of the season in the seventh of a pair of hits. Carlos Marmol pitched a perfect eighth and was in line for the win. Shawn Camp was a strike away from sealing the victory. Camp ended up giving up four runs on five hits with no walks, two strikeouts and a costly balk in 1 2/3 innings.
The offense did everything they could on Sunday and gave Edwin Jackson a three-run lead after the first inning. David DeJesus (1-for-2 with three walks and a run scored) was on base four times and scored when Starlin Castro (3-for-5 with a home run and two RBI) hit his second homer of the season off Tim Lincecum in the first inning. After Alfonso Soriano (2-for-4 with a double, a walk and two runs scored) singled, Nate Schierholtz (1-for-4 with a home run and two RBI) launched his second dinger of the season, and gave the Cubs a 4-1 lead in the first inning.
Alberto Gonzalez (1-for-3 with a home run, a sac fly and two RBI) made his case to stick around once Darwin Barney is activated from the DL on Tuesday. Gonzalez brought the Cubs to within one in the seventh with his first home run of the season, a monster shot that ended up on Waveland then gave the Cubs a brief one-run lead in the eighth with a sacrifice fly.
Luis Valbuena (0-for-4 with a RBI and a walk) walked in the eighth to force in the tying run, and Anthony Rizzo (1-for-5 with a double and a run scored) collected his second hit off a lefty (2-for-11 on the season).
The Cubs scored seven runs on nine hits and walked six times. Any time a team puts up those numbers in their home park, it is usually a win for the home team.
Edwin Jackson made quick work of Pagan and Scutaro to start the game. Pablo Sandoval singled and advanced to third on a single by Hunter Pence. Pence then swiped second with Belt at the plate. Jackson walked Belt to load the bases. Gregor Blanco stepped in with two outs and a passed ball by Dioner Navarro allowed Sandoval to score. With the Giants up 1-0, Jackson struck out Blanco swinging to end the inning.
The Cubs got the one run back in the bottom of the first … and then some. David DeJesus walked to start the inning then trotted around the bases on Starlin Castro’s second home run of the series and season. Castro fell behind 1-2, worked a full count then took Lincecum deep and out to left. Rizzo struck out.
Alfonso Soriano singled to center and scored on when Nate Schierholtz launched his second home run of the season.
The game remained 4-1 Cubs until the sixth inning … then it got ugly for the Cubs.
The Cubs set a Major League record in the sixth inning with five wild pitches, two by Edwin Jackson and three by Michael Bowden.
Jackson walked Pence to start the inning. The first wild pitch allowed Pence to advance to second. Jackson walked Belt to put two on with no outs. Gregor Blanco pulled a double down the right field line. Pence scored and Belt ended up at third. Hector Sanchez struck out swinging for the first out. Jackson then uncorked a wild pitch on ball four to Brandon Crawford. Belt scored, 4-3 Cubs.
With the Cubs clinging to a one-run lead at that point and runners on first and third with only one out, Dale Sveum went to his pen for Michael Bowden. Bowden uncorked a wild pitch that allowed Crawford to advance into scoring position with Nick Noonan at the plate. Noonan was hitting for Lincecum and gave the Giants the lead with a single to left center. Both Blanco and Crawford scored, 5-4 Giants. The fourth wild pitch of the inning allowed Noonan to advance to second and the fifth allowed Noonan to move up to third. Bowden walked Pagan before Marco Scutaro grounded into a 4-6-3 double play to end the inning.
The Giants tacked on a run in the seventh against Hector Rondon. Hunter Pence reached on a one out single to right. After Schierholtz dropped a fly ball in right off the bat of Brandon Belt and forced Pence at second, Belt stole second base. Gregor Blanco collected his second RBI double of the day, this one down the left field line. Belt scored, 6-4 Giants. Rondon struck out Sanchez swinging to end the inning.
The Cubs got one back in the bottom of the seventh when Alberto Gonzalez took Chad Gaudin deep and out to Waveland … at the end of seven, the Cubs trailed 6-5.
After Carlos Marmol retired the side in order in the eighth, Anthony Rizzo led off the home-half with a double to right off lefty Jeremy Affeldt. Alfonso Soriano walked. With two on, no outs and the Cubs trailing by one, Schierholtz bunted both runners up ninety feet. Affeldt intentionally walked Navarro to load the bases.
Luis Valbuena then walked and forced in Rizzo with the tying run. Bruce Bochy went to his pen and brought in Santiago Casilla to face Gonzalez.
Albert Gonzalez followed with a sac fly to left on the first pitch from Casilla. Soriano scored, 7-6 Cubs. Scott Hairston hit for Marmol and grounded out to short to end the inning.
Shawn Camp retired Scutaro on a grounder to Castro and struck out Sandoval swinging for the first two outs in the ninth. Camp jumped ahead of Pence but could not finish him off. Hunter Pence lifted a 2-2 pitch into the bleachers in left center … and just like that the game was tied at seven. Camp struck out Belt looking to end the inning.
The game went to the bottom of the ninth all tied at seven.
David DeJesus worked a walk to start the ninth against lefty Javier Lopez. Bochy went to his pen for the right-hander George Kontos to face Castro. Starlin Castro grounded into a 4-6-3 double play and Rizzo struck out swinging to end the inning.
Shawn Camp stayed in for the tenth … and could not record three outs.
Hector Sanchez reached on a single to right with one down and advanced to third on a Brandon Crawford single to right center. With Buster Posey at the plate, Camp stepped off the rubber but did not throw the ball to first … a balk. Sanchez scored the go ahead, and eventual winning run. Posey then singled in Crawford. After Pagan grounded into a 4-6 force out, Marco Scutaro doubled to left. Pagan scored … 10-7 Giants. Sveum went to his pen for Rafael Dolis, who retired Sandoval on a fly out to center.
Alfonso Soriano doubled to start the tenth but Sergio Romo retired Schierholtz, Navarro and Valbuena in order to end the game.
Monday is a day off for the Cubs, their only scheduled off day over a stretch of 33 days. The Cubs open a three game series with the Rangers on Tuesday night … Travis Wood versus Derek Holland.