Game Twenty-Six – Cubs 7, Padres 13
WP – Edinson Volquez (2-3) LP – Edwin Jackson (0-4) Save – None
The Cubs were blown out for the first time this season on Tuesday night. After the first 25 games of the year being decided by four runs or less, the Padres took batting practice against Edwin Jackson and put the game out of reach in the fifth inning.
Edwin Jackson had a horrible outing and while the Cubs’ offense could not string together any hits until the fifth inning, Jackson could not throw an unhittable strike. The Padres scored runs in the second, third and fifth off Jackson and put the game out of reach in the fifth. The Padres sent 10 to the plate in the inning and scored five runs on six hits off Jackson … and five of the six hits in the fifth went for extra bases. Jackson was lifted after giving up a run scoring single to Edinson Volquez.
On a night the Cubs needed innings and a quality start from Jackson, he lasted just 4 2/3 innings and allowed eight runs on 11 hits (one home run) with two walks and six strikeouts. Jackson threw 88 pitches, 54 for strikes.
For one of the few times of late, the Cubs’ bullpen could not throw zeros on the board. The Padres tacked on a run against Kameron Loe in the sixth. Another run against Hector Rondon in the seventh and three more runs off Rondon in the eighth on one swing of the bat. Rondon had not pitched more than one inning in a single outing prior to Tuesday night. Dale Sveum left Rondon in for the eighth and he ran out of gas. Nick Hundley hit the Padres’ third homer of the night, a three-run shot off Rondon that put an exclamation point on the game for San Diego.
The 13 runs allowed on 17 hits with three walks, a HBP and eight strikeouts set a new season high for the Cubs … and the 13 runs was the most scored by the Padres at Wrigley Field since August 25, 1991.
The Cubs offense could not keep up with the pitching staff on Tuesday. While the Cubs wasted chances to put runs on the board (3-for-9 with RISP and six left on base), the Cubs hit four home runs and nine of their 11 hits went for extra bases.
Anthony Rizzo (3-for-4 with three doubles, a RBI, a walk and a stolen base) had a huge night and ended April on a positive note. Luis Valbuena (1-for-3 with a home run, two RBI and a walk) hit his fifth home run of the season, a two-run shot in the fifth that put the Cubs on the board. Starlin Castro (2-for-5 with a home run, two RBI and two runs scored) launched his third home run of the season in the Cubs’ four-run fifth inning.
David DeJesus (1-for-5 with a home run) added his third homer in the seventh after replays showed the ball left the park and Cody Ransom (1-for-1 with a home run) hit his third longball since joining the Cubs in the ninth inning. All but one of the Cubs’ seven runs scored via the longball on Tuesday night.
The Cubs managed only one hit the first time through the lineup and did not make Edinson Volquez work before the game got out of hand. Volquez improved to 5-0 lifetime against the Cubs and his two teams are 8-0 in his eight career starts.
With the four home runs hit on Tuesday, the Cubs finished April with 35 longballs, third most in franchise history and nearly four times the home runs they hit last April (9).
With Tuesday’s loss, the Cubs finished the first month of the season with a 10-16 record.
Edwin Jackson was very sharp in the first inning. Jackson struck out two of the three batters he faced and it took him just 12 pitches, eight for strikes, to complete the opening frame. But the good feeling about Jackson’s outing went away quickly in the second inning.
After Jackson struck out Quentin to start the second, Yonder Alonso singled to center (2-0 pitch). Mark Kotsay followed with a single to right center. With runners on first and third with one down, Jedd Gyorko ripped a double into right center. Alonso and Kotsay scored, 2-0 Padres. Hundley grounded out to short, Gyorko advanced to third but was stranded when Volquez struck out swinging. Jackson needed 30 pitches, 20 for strikes, to complete two innings of work.
The Cubs went down quietly and quickly in the second … and the Padres added onto their lead in the third.
Edwin Jackson issued a walk to Everth Cabrera to start the third. Denorfia hit a slow roller toward short. Castro fielded and threw out Denorfia at first but Cabrera advanced to second on the play. Chase Headley singled to right. Cabrera held at third. Carlos Quentin lifted Jackson’s first pitch into left. Cabrera scored, 3-0 Padres. Welington Castillo threw the ball down the right field line when he tried to pickoff Headley from first after a 1-1 pitch to Alonso. Headley advanced to second but was stranded when Alonso grounded a 3-2 pitch to Barney for the third out.
The Cubs went down in order again in the third. Volquez needed just 26 pitches the first time through the lineup.
Jackson kept the Padres off the board in the fourth. Jackson committed an error on a wild pickoff attempt at first base but struck out Volquez swinging again to end the inning.
The Cubs wasted a chance to cut into the Padres’ 3-0 lead in the fourth. After Castro flied out to deep center for the first out, Anthony Rizzo pulled a 3-2 pitch into right center for his second double of the game. Soriano then blooped Volquez’s first pitch into right. Kotsay ran in and tried to make a diving catch. The ball popped out of his glove and Rizzo advanced to third. Nate Schierholtz pulled a 1-0 pitch right to Alonso … 3-6-3 double play to end the inning.
The Padres cranked up the offense in the fifth and knocked Jackson out of the game.
Everth Cabrera led off the fifth with a triple to center on a 3-1 pitch. With the infield in, Denorfia grounded out to Rizzo. Cabrera held at third. Chase Headley then doubled off the wall in left (1-0 pitch). Cabrera trotted home, 4-0 Padres. Quentin drove a 0-2 pitch down the right field line, Headley scored and Quentin strolled home when Yonder Alonso lifted a 1-0 pitch into the wind. The ball ended up in the basket in left center and the Padres took a 7-0 lead. Jackson walked Kotsay. Gyorko flied out to the wall in right for the second out. Nick Hundley singled. With runners on first and second with two down, Sveum left Jackson into face Volquez. Jackson served up a 1-0 pitch to Volquez and the ball ended up in centerfield. Kotsay scored on Volquez’s first hit and RBI of the season … 8-0 Padres.
Dale Sveum made the slow walk and made a double-switch. Kameron Loe replaced Jackson on the mound and Julio Borbon took over in left. Soriano’s night ended early. Loe retired Cabrera on a grounder to Rizzo to end the inning.
The Cubs finally got on the board in the fifth after they started working the count. Welington Castillo led off with a double to right center. Luis Valbuena then pulled a 1-1 pitch into the bleachers in right. Valbuena’s fifth homer of the season put the Cubs on the board. Darwin Barney pulled a 2-2 pitch down the third baseline. Barney ended up a second with a double. Julio Borbon hit Volquez’s first pitch back up the box. The ball hit Volquez but did not get far enough away for Borbon to reach. Barney advanced to third as Volquez threw out Borbon for the first out. DeJesus lined out to Alonso for the second out.
With two down, Barney on second and the Cubs trailing 8-2, Starlin Castro launched a 0-2 pitch toward left. The ball ended up in the bleachers and cut the Padres lead to 8-4. Rizzo grounded out to Alonso to end the inning.
Kameron Loe stayed in for the sixth and served up a solo homer to Carlos Quentin … and the end of five and a half, the Cubs trailed 9-4.
The Cubs wasted a chance to chip away at the Padres lead in the bottom of the sixth.
Volquez walked Dave Sappelt to start the sixth. Schierholtz flied out to left. Castillo struck out swinging on a 1-2 pitch but Sappelt swiped second. Volquez did not want anything to do with Valbuena and walked him on four pitches. Darwin Barney put together an 11-pitch at bat that resulted in a walk that loaded the bases … and chased Volquez from the game. Bud Black went his pen for Dale Thayer. Julio Borbon flied out to right on a 1-0 pitch to end the inning.
The Padres tacked on in the seventh against Hector Rondon. Hundley reached on a one out double to left (3-1 pitch). After Thayer tapped back to the mound, Rondon hit Cabrera with a 1-2 pitch. Denorfia then singled to center on a 1-2 pitch. Hundley scored, 10-4 Padres. Headley fouled out to Valbuena to end the inning.
David DeJesus made it 10-5 in the bottom of the seventh with his third home run of the season. DeJesus lined a 1-2 pitch from Thayer off the led screen in right. The umpires did not see where the ball hit but after Sveum asked for a review, it was ruled a home run. After Rizzo worked a one-out walk, Dave Sappelt grounded into a 6-3 double play to end the inning.
Hector Rondon stayed in for the eighth, the first time he pitched more than one inning all season and if the Cubs were thinking about a comeback, the top of the eighth ended those thoughts.
Quentin doubled to left to start the eighth. Rondon retired Alonso and Kotsay on fly outs to left. Rondon issued a walk to Jedd Gyorko. Nick Hundley then crushed a 0-2 pitch from Rondon. The ball ended up in the back of the bleachers in left center … 13-5 Padres. Jesus Guzman hit for Thayer and flied out to right center to end the inning.
The Cubs scored two runs in the ninth off rookie southpaw Robbie Erlin. Erlin made his big league debut and served up a home run with one out to Cody Ransom. Starlin Castro reached on a two-out single and scored the final run on Anthony Rizzo’s third double of the night. Sappelt flied out to deep center to end the game.
Scott Feldman faces Andrew Cashner on Wednesday night.