Cubs Lose a Long, Wild, Ugly Game in San Diego – Cubs 2, Padres 3

Game One Hundred Thirty – Cubs 2, Padres 3 – 15 innings

WP – Dale Thayer (2-3) LP – Hector Rondon (2-1) Save – None

It took five hours, 13 minutes and 15 innings to decide Sunday’s finale in San Diego and the Padres came out on top in a game that neither team appeared to want to win after Nick Hundley delivered a two-out single into center off of Hector Rondon.

Sunday’s game was scoreless into the 13th inning before the Cubs finally put two runs on the board after a bizarre play. With the bases loaded and no outs, Nate Schierholtz (1-for-6) pulled a routine grounder toward first. Schierholtz twisted his ankle and stumbled out of the box. Jesus Guzman’s throw to the plate hit Schierholtz on the helmet. The ball bounced away and Darnell McDonald (1-for-2 with a run scored) scored the first run of the game. Brian Bogusevic (0-for-3, SF RBI and three walks) hit a sac fly to right center that plated Starlin Castro (2-for-6 with a walk and a run scored) and gave the Cubs a 2-0 lead.

But Kevin Gregg could not hold the lead. Ronny Cedeno tripled in Jesus Guzman for the Padres’ first run then scored on wild pitch to tie the game.

The Cubs had plenty of chances to win the game in extra innings. The Cubs managed only eight hits on Sunday but walked seven times and finished the game 0-for-10 with runners in scoring position and left 13 men on base.

Chris Rusin and Andrew Cashner were both long gone by the time the winning run scored on Sunday. Rusin and Cashner locked in a pitcher’s duel for seven innings. Andrew Cashner did everything he could to stick it to the Cubs but his offense would not corporate. Cashner allowed just two singles, a walk and hit a batter over the first seven innings. Cashner struck out seven while allowing only one runner to reach second base on a season-high 108 pitches.

Chris Rusin matched Cashner nearly pitch for pitch and allowed only three hits, all singles, over 6 1/3 innings of shutout ball. Rusin was very good once again and did not allow a single runner to reach third base while he was on the mound. Rusin walked four and struck out three on 87 pitches, 47 for strikes.

The Cubs’ pen did their job until the 13th when Kevin Gregg blew his fifth save of the season. Carlos Villanueva, Pedro Strop, Blake Parker, Michael Bowden and James Russell kept the Padres off the board while the offense tried to scratch out a run.

Anthony Rizzo (2-for-6 with a walk) and Welington Castillo (1-for-5 with a walk) each collected hits while Junior Lake (1-for-7 with a stolen base) extended his hitting streak to eight games with an infield single leading off the 12th inning.

The Cubs lost both the series (1-2) and the season series (3-4) to the Padres with Sunday’s loss (7-14 in Sundays in 2013).

The Cubs dropped back to 20 games under .500 with a record of 55-75 following Sunday’s defeat.

Chris Rusin and Andrew Cashner locked in a pitcher’s duel on Sunday afternoon. After forcing Andrew Cashner to throw 25 pitches in the first inning, 14 for strikes, the Cubs made it easy on Cashner for his next six innings. Cashner pounded the strike zone while the Cubs’ hitters put up little resistance.

The game was scoreless going into the bottom of the sixth. Rusin was very efficient and needed only 60 pitches, 35 for strikes, to complete his first five innings on Sunday.

A very determined Andrew Cashner led off the sixth with a single to left (2-2 pitch), just the third hit of the game off Rusin. Chris Denorfia rapped into a 6-4-3 double play. Rusin wanted nothing to do with Venable and walked him on four pitches. Rusin caught Jedd Gyorko looking at a 2-2 pitch to end the inning. Rusin threw 81 pitches, 45 for strikes, over his first six innings of work.

Andrew Cashner hit Donnie Murphy with one out in the seventh but that was all for the Cubs. Over the seven innings they faced Cashner, the offense managed two singles, a walk and a HBP.

After Rusin retired Chase Headley on a foul out to Rizzo to start the seventh, Rusin issued a four-pitch walk to Jesus Guzman. With Logan Forsythe due up, Dale Sveum went to his pen for Carlos Villanueva. Forsythe singled to left center and put runners on first and second with one down. Ronny Cedeno flied out to center (first pitch) and pinch-hitter Yonder Alonso grounded out to second (2-1 pitch) to end the inning.

Luke Gregerson replaced Cashner for the eighth. Darwin Barney worked a leadoff walk. Logan Watkins hit for Villanueva and bunted Barney to second … only the second time the Cubs had a runner in scoring position over the first eight innings. Castro grounded out to third for the second out.

Anthony Rizzo stepped in and hit a bullet back up the middle (1-1 pitch). Luke Gregerson stuck out his glove and caught the ball as he fell backwards. Rizzo squared up the ball and did what he was supposed to do, Gregerson just made the play.

Pedro Strop made quick work of Hundley (swinging strikeout) and Denorfia (grounder to second) to start the eighth. Will Venable singled to left center (1-1 pitch) with two outs. Jedd Gyorko then hit a slower roller toward third. Donnie Murphy charged the ball, but bobbled it and did not make a throw. The Padres had two on with two down. Chase Headley smoked a 2-0 pitch right at Darwin Barney to end the inning.

Brian Bogusevic worked a one-out walk against Huston Street in the ninth. Sveum called for a hit and run on a 1-1 pitch to Junior Lake. Lake popped the ball into shallow right and Denorfia doubled off Bogusevic to end the inning.

Blake Parker retired the Padres in order in the ninth … and the game went into extra innings.


After the Cubs failed to do anything against Nick Vincent in the tenth, Mark Kotsay led off the tenth against Blake Parker. Kotsay reached out and poked a 1-2 pitch into shallow left. Jaff Decker ran for Kotsay. Nick Hundley bunted a 1-1 pitch back toward the mound. Blake Parker picked up the ball and threw a strike to Castro to force Decker for the first out. Denorfia flied out to right for out number two.

With Hundley on first and two down, Will Venable struck out swinging (2-2 pitch) to end the inning.

And the game went to the 11th, still scoreless.

Brad Brach took over for the Padres in the 11th and issued a one-out walk to Starlin Castro. After Rizzo fouled out to first base, Nate Schierholtz singled to center … the Cubs’ third hit of the game. Castro advanced to third, the first time either team put a runner on third base in the game. Bogusevic lined out to left to end the inning.

Michael Bowden retired Gyorko on a foul out to Rizzo, then walked Chase Headley and Jesus Guzman. With runners on first and second with one out, Logan Forsythe lined a 1-2 pitch at Schierholtz in right for the second out … and Cedeno fouled out to Rizzo to end the inning.

And the game went to the 12th, still zero-zero.

Junior Lake led off the 12th with an infield single up the middle. Gyorko stopped the ball but his throw to first was late. Murphy flied out to right. Lake took off for second on a 1-1 pitch to Castillo and slid in safe with his third stolen base of the season. Castillo walked and the Cubs had runners on first and second for Darwin Barney. Barney grounded into a 6-3 double play (3-2 pitch) to end the inning.

Alexi Amarista led off the 12th with a double down the first baseline off James Russell, the first extra basehit of the game. After Nick Hundley flied out to deep center with Amarista running, Russell intentionally walked Chris Denorfia.

Will Venable stepped in with runners on first and second with one out and pulled a 2-2 pitch toward second. Barney fielded the ball and threw to second to force Denorfia … the ball was not hit hard enough to turn two.

Russell jumped ahead of Gyorko 0-2 with runners on second and third with two down after Venable advanced to second on defensive indifference. Gyorko flied out to deep center to end the inning and sent the game to the 13th inning.

Darnell McDonald hit for James Russell to lead off the 13th inning. McDonald singled to left off Brad Boxberger. Starlin Castro followed and worked a full count. McDonald took off for second on a 3-2 pitch. Cedeno broke for second to cover the bag and Castro hit the ball through the vacated hole at short. McDonald advanced to third with no outs. Rizzo walked to load the bases for Schierholtz.

Nate Schierholtz pulled a 1-0 pitch toward first. Schierholtz twisted his left ankle and stumbled out of the box. When he left the box, he jogged out with his head down and Guzman’s throw to the plate hit Schierholtz in the helmet. McDonald scored the first run of the game on a throwing error by Guzman and the bases remained loaded with no outs.

Brian Bogusevic hit a deep fly to right center that Denorfia caught for the out. Castro tagged and scored, 2-0 Cubs. With runners on the corners and one down, Lake struck out swinging and Murphy flied out to right to end the inning.

Kevin Gregg took the hill for the bottom of the 13th inning with the Cubs up 2-0. Gregg retired Headley on a grounder to first. Jesus Guzman followed with a double to left center. Forsythe grounded out to second and Guzman advanced to third on the play.

Ronny Cedeno drove a 2-1 pitch into the gap in right center. Guzman scored on a triple by Cedeno and cut the Cubs’ lead to 2-1. Gregg uncorked a wild pitch. Castillo could not keep the ball in front of him then lost track of the ball. Cedeno did not break from the plate immediately. Once he saw Castillo was having trouble locating the ball he started down the line. Castillo rushed his throw, the ball went between Gregg’s legs and the Padres tied the game on a wild pitch. Gregg retired Amarista on a flyout to left and the game went to the 14th inning.

Hector Rondon took the hill in the 14th after the Cubs failed to do anything in the top of the inning. Nick Hundley reached on an infield single up the middle to Castro. Castro could not catch the soft liner. Denorfia followed with a bloop single to left center. With runners on first and second with no outs, Venable grounded out to Rizzo. Both runners moved up ninety feet and Dale Sveum brought Junior Lake into the infield with the winning run on third.

Bud Black had Eric Stults hit for Boxberger and Rondon struck him out swinging for the second out. Rondon caught Headley looking at a 3-2 pitch to end the inning.

The Cubs loaded the bases with one out in the 15th but came away empty. Castro and Rizzo singled then Gillespie bunted both runners up ninety feet. Dale Thayer intentionally walked Bogusevic to load the bases with one down. Lake hit a slow roller up the third baseline. Headley threw out Castro at the plate and Murphy grounded out to third to end the inning.

Rondon stayed in for the 15th and gave up a one-out single to Logan Forsythe. Cedeno grounded out to third, Forsythe advanced to second and Rondon intentionally walked Amarista.

Nick Hundley ended the game with a single to center. Forsythe scored … game over.

The Cubs open a three-game series on Monday night in Los Angeles against the Dodgers. Jake Arrieta is scheduled to face Zack Greinke in game one.

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  • Rational Logic

    God I hope the kids in the minors are not watching the big league club. Disgusting.

    • DWalker

      they are. and they are saying “I can do better, give me a shot” you don’t think Baez, Almora, Bryant, and a whole ton of other kids, all of them pure type A competitive personalities aren’t just chewing at the bit, knowing that the main club is so pathetic that almost every player is replaceable? Theo and Hoyer really DON’T want to bring any of the kids up to start next year and start the clock on them any sooner than they have to. They would LOVE for next year to be another rebuild year and a top 3 draft pick for 2015. The kids would love to force the issue, let them play rather than look for more scrap heap rejects who might be serviceably rehabbed and traded. Thing is, what Theo and Jed WANT, and what they will be able to do, might differ. Season ticket sales are going to be terrible next year, and there may be a breaking point where they have to do something to fill seats. Baez and Bryant have been hyped enough that even semi casual fans who are still hanging around have some inclination these guys are potentially very very good according to the hype.

      • Rational Logic

        Of course that’s all true. What I meant was more of an aphorism than anything else.

  • cubtex

    Remember the bottom was last August. Theo and the boys prepared for this years sell off with better players(at least some were saying) There was absolutely no way this team would go 18-42 again. No way we would ever seat another 100 loss season. Congrats. The improbable is looking very possible.

    • Tony_Hall

      Do you remember last Aug/Sept the rotation that was sent out there? Rusin just pitched a great game. Getting the W is just not as important as Rusin showing that he is capable to being a back end SP.

      Samardzija, Wood, Jackson, Arrieta, Rusin is a lot better than Germano, Rusin, Raley, Berken were last year.

      Yes the offense is not as good but who knew trading DeJesus would hurt them so much, they are 2-5 since trading him :) It is a FACT and basic stats tell the truth.

      • cubtex

        DeJesus was traded? I hadn’t noticed

        • Tony_Hall

          They won the first game in an emotional high, then went 1-5 the rest of the week. He was the glue that kept this team in a respectable under 500 range….now it is all down hill :)

        • mike1040

          hahaha I felt the same way when we traded Garciaparra, I wanted to trade the playerr and keep the wife.

  • John_CC

    The old Kevin Gregg we all know and … er … know…

    • 07GreyDigger

      I think when Gregg kicks the bucket, this will be on his tombstone.

      Kevin Gregg
      “Couldn’t hold the lead”

      • John_CC

        A grim yet fitting epitaph.

  • Denver Mike

    With 32 games to go we are tied in the loss column with the White Sox for the #3 and only 5 games back of the Marlins for the #2 spot in next years draft. All is not lost!

    Unlike many I am not being facetious when I say this. This season has been lost for quite some time, so who cares? Let’s go for the “gold”.

    • J Daniel

      EXACTLY part of the plan!

    • Ripsnorter1

      I agree, Mike. Let’s lose ‘em all!

      I think Team Theo will deserve some sort of a trophy
      for putting 2 100 loss seasons back to back. And next year,
      if they can do it a third time, will set a new Cubs record!

      I’ll let Cubtex design the trophy….what’d ya think, Cubtex?

      • cubtex

        LOL. The problem is that Team Theo actually thought he was putting together a deeper team this year and the 100 loss or close to 100 loss year would be ancient history. Whoops. When you have roster fillers like Murphy, Gillespie, McDonald and the only proven hitter(Castro) is having a horrendous year…what do you expect? Did you see their last 20 games? I think 6-14 would be the best case scenario.

        • DWalker

          honestly? all they did was look for trade bait and reclaimation projects. the deeper team talk was just playign to the media. We will be luicky if they don’t rinse and repeat next year as well, though the second half of the year may have soem big call ups.

        • paulcatanese

          Haven’t posted in a while as there really was nothing to talk about. But I see another very bad season in store for 2014 as well.
          The front office will continue to stockpile players for the minors
          and for good reason, they will have no one to move for trades unless it comes from this group that they have recently signed.
          So not only will they not have anyone at the major league level to move (who would want what they have right now?) but will have to move some of the ones they have brought in to accomplish it.
          I don’t see them doing that with the ones that they have brought in, but rather the people that were there before they took over.
          No, it doesn’t look good for another year to me. Plus the idea of extensions to “core” players has not worked out so far. The reasoning that they will “grow” into what they are supposed to be is little more than these guys are developing at the major league level with a good salary rather than in the minors.

          • cubtex

            Agreed Paul. Long time no speak :) Welcome back but I think I am about done with this year too. September call ups appear to be pretty blah. Tired of watching Sveum not knowing how to manage a game or develop young players. Payroll is getting lower and lower and players are getting weaker and weaker. Maybe something will happen over the offseason to shock us. It won’t be through free agency. To overpay for a Shin Shoo Choo or Ellsbury makes zero sense but so did EJAX and we know how that is working out. Time will tell. As I have said ad nauseum. Theo has the best job in the world. Can lose 100 games a year for several years and have job security and no worries. What a country!

  • mike1040

    Every time I watch on WGN I notice more and more empty seats. (sigh) I remember the Harry Carey days with record sell outs every year, no matter where we went or what the standings.

    • cubtex

      fans can only take so much losing.

      • 07GreyDigger

        We’ve taken over 100 years of losing. Why is it all of a sudden out of style? I’m confused! :)

        • cubtex

          because they aren’t even trying to field a competitive team now. At least back in the day, they added major league players(not always the right fit) but they had players that fans could relate to and cheer for. Who wants to go watch this product now? Honestly? You can’t even give tickets away these days.

          • 07GreyDigger

            Would it be fair to say with the upcoming renovations and Rickett’s work to appease the neighborhood that ownership is trying as a whole? I know it doesn’t show up on the field and that’s what ultimately matters, but if you had to pick one or the other, would you want a Cubs team that’s got a facility that’s up to snuff for the fans and the players and poised to compete 3-4 years from now? Or a world series championship and a stadium that’s crumbling and not safe that no player will want to come to?

          • cubtex

            That is a slight exaggeration wouldn’t you say? Unsafe and no player would want to come here?
            As you have said before, I believe you are 30 ish? Is that about right? To you….3,4,5 years is nothing. How about 3,4 years to a lifelong Cub fan who has been waiting his entire life to see a WS team once?

          • 07GreyDigger

            How old are you Tex? 100? I think 3-4 years for you, you’ll be OK.

            As for the unsafe part, seeing as you no longer live here, they have nets up across the concrete of the upper deck because its crumbling. If they did nothing with the stadium for 3-4 years, something could happen. Maybe a block falls on somebody. Maybe it doesn’t. But that stadium looks great on TV, but is not in good shape. It’s long past in need of some work done.

            I’m also sure you’ve heard how inadequate the player’s facilities. How small the locker room is, the lack of athletic training amenities and how out of date the cage is. If you were some free agent like Clayton Kershaw who was about to sign a lifetime multi-million dollar deal, would you want to come to the Cubs with subpar facilities to keep you healthy and in a run down dump of a stadium? Or go to a cutting edge place with everything you could ever want?

            These things matter.

          • cubtex

            I am not talking about myself. Don’t you have any sympathy for the old timers?

          • 07GreyDigger

            I do. But not at the expense of the whole organization. Priorities sir.

            I just look at the Blackhawks who went through a similar awful stretch and they got consistently better and look how that turned out!

          • paulcatanese

            Been a Cub fan for over 65 years, thru good and bad, mostly bad. Watching every day waiting for them to figure out how to lose. They did a pretty good job in the losing department. But other than the last two years, I have never seen a Cub team be set up to lose as they have now. They always whether good or bad tried to put a team on the field.
            This is not the same, ah, what’s the use?

          • Dorasaga

            Good to see you back, Paul. I had a question about the old time. Did you have more interactions with players before or after game (maybe late night) back in the 60s or 70s? Nowadays, and I’ve been wondering for awhile, had professional sports gotten into the psyche of players? They now refuse to talk, and would eventually shut themselves out from everyone down their career path.

            http://www.detroitnews.com/article/20130815/SPORTS0104/308150071

          • paulcatanese

            Yes, as I had mentioned before, the Cubs had a bowling team, and were very friendly when there. And after some games
            I had dinner and some of the Phillies coaching staff were at the next table, easy to talk to.
            Later years, 70′s several ex Giant players were clients of mine and almost talked one of them into playing fast pitch softball, went to a Giant game with an ex-player, had many communications with former professional players both Baseball and Football, all the ones I knew were outgoing.

          • Dorasaga

            Amazing. It’s always good to hear from someone who lived through the times… Thanks!

          • Brp921

            Again don’t tempt me with a world series, that’s where my vote would go. :)

      • mike1040

        Eventually, (sometime soon),someone will have to have a plan that will merge a decent team with
        the re-build of both the FO and Wrigley. Otherwise there won’t be any
        fans left to pay the 3rd highest ticket prices in MLB.

        • cubtex

          I really think if they put out another starting 8 like the last 2 years….you will see a huge difference next year.

          • 07GreyDigger

            Unless those of us on the waiting list buy them up as an investment…

          • cubtex

            I am sure if you want season tickets Grey….you could be the 1st in line :)