Game One Hundred Seven – Cubs 6, Brewers 1
WP – Edwin Jackson (7-11) LP –Wily Peralta (7-11) Save – None
The Cubs snapped their three-game losing streak on Wednesday night behind a solid outing from Edwin Jackson and finally beat the Brewers. The Cubs appeared much more relaxed than in recent games and played a good game from beginning to end.
Edwin Jackson was very sharp both before and after the rain. Jackson was cruising right along until it starting raining in the top of the sixth. Jackson was not only efficient but he made the pitches when he needed to with runners in scoring position. Jackson returned after the one hour, six minute rain delay and not only picked up the last out in the sixth but completed two more innings.
Edwin Jackson allowed one run on eight hits with no walks and four strikeouts in eight innings. Jackson threw 94 pitches, 62 for strikes. Blake Parker closed out the game with a shaky ninth inning.
Anthony Rizzo (2-for-4 with a home run, a double and two RBI), Starlin Castro (2-for-4 with a home run) and David DeJesus (2-for-3 with three RBI, a walk and a run scored) led the way on Wednesday night.
Anthony Rizzo hit his 15th longball of the season in the third inning. Rizzo’s two-run shot was the Cubs’ first homer of the series. Starlin Castro hit a long, solo homer in the fourth. David DeJesus drove in the last three runs with an infield single in the fourth and a two-run single in the sixth.
Anthony Rizzo doubled in the first inning and tied Jay Bruce for second in the National League with 31 doubles. Rizzo’s 31 doubles are the most by a Cub before August 1 since Alfonso Soriano hit 30 in 2007.
The Cubs defense really stepped up on Wednesday night. Nate Schierholtz and David DeJesus turned excellent plays behind Jackson while Starlin Castro, Cody Ransom, Welington Castillo, Anthony Rizzo and Julio Borbon were all solid in the field.
The Cubs avoided the sweep and by doing so Dale Sveum’s team finished July with a 14-13 record, the first winning month of the season.
With Wednesday’s victory, the Cubs improved to 49-58 on the season.
Edwin Jackson struggled a little with his command in the first inning and fell behind the first three batters he faced. Jackson surrendered a one out single to Aoki but that was all. Jackson struck out Carlos Gomez swinging to end the inning. Jackson threw 12 pitches in the first, seven for strikes.
Anthony Rizzo collected his 31st double of the season in the Cubs’ first. Wily Peralta retired Schierholtz on a flyout to left to end the inning. The aggressive Cubs’ offense allowed Peralta to throw only 10 pitches in the first, eight for strikes.
After both teams failed to score in the second inning, Yuniesky Betancourt led off the third with a double off the top of the ivy in left. Betancourt just missed a home run. Peralta bunted Betancourt to third with one out. Jackson fell behind Rickie Weeks 3-1 before striking out Weeks swinging on a 3-2 pitch for the second out. Aoki worked a full count before grounding out to third to end the inning. Jackson threw 38 pitches, 22 for strikes, over two innings.
David DeJesus worked a one out walk in the third. A wild pitch on a 0-1 offering to Borbon advanced DeJesus to second. Borbon popped out to short for the second out.
Anthony Rizzo worked a 3-1 count then launched Peralta’s next pitch into the bleachers in right center. Rizzo’s 15th longball of the season put the Cubs up 2-0. Schierholtz struck out swinging to end the inning.
The Cubs had a 2-0 lead after three innings.
Jonathan Lucroy led off the fourth with a double down the left field line. Jackson struck out Carlos Gomez swinging for the second time in as many at bats. Caleb Gindl drove a 1-2 pitch into left. Borbon charged the ball and Lucroy was going to stop at third until Borbon bobbled the ball. Lucroy was waived in. Borbon recovered nicely and made a strong throw to the plate. Welington Castillo caught the ball on the first base side of the plate, then dove backward and tagged Lucroy just before he touched the plate. Gindl took second on the throw but was stranded when Martin Maldonado grounded out to Castro. Jackson threw 51 pitches in four innings, 32 for strikes.
Starlin Castro hit his seventh homer of the year with one out in the fourth. Castro pulled the ball into the bleachers in left … it was not a cheap home run.
Cody Ransom worked a two out walk in the fourth. Edwin Jackson chopped a 2-0 pitch toward the hole at short. Jeff Bianchi stayed back and the ball hit off his glove and ended up in shallow left. Jackson reached, Ransom advanced to third and the Cubs had runners on the corners with two outs. David DeJesus ripped a 1-2 pitch back up the middle and off of Wily Peralta. The ball ended up at the hole at second, Ransom scored and the Cubs took a 4-0 lead. Julio Borbon pulled a 0-1 pitch toward first. Jonathan Lucroy got in front of the ball but did not field it cleanly. Lucroy flipped to Peralta but he could not find the bag before Borbon touched the base (slid in headfirst). Rizzo stepped in with the bases loaded and appeared to look at ball four on a 3-0 pitch. The ball was called a strike and Rizzo lined out to Gindl in left to end the inning.
The game remained 4-0 Cubs through the fifth inning.
Edwin Jackson recorded two quick outs to start the sixth … with a little help from his defense. Nate Schierholtz made an excellent diving catch running in toward the infield to take away a hit from Aoki for the first out. David DeJesus took away extra bases from Lucroy with a running catch toward the vines in right center for the second out. Jackson fell behind Gomez 1-0 before the rain rushed in and the game was put in a delay.
Edwin Jackson took the hill after a one hour, six minute delay and retired Gomez on a grounder to Castro for the third out. Jackson retired the side in order and threw 71 pitches, 65 for strikes, over the first six innings.
Alfredo Figaro replaced Peralta after the rain delay and Welington Castillo greeted him with a single to left. Cody Ransom followed with a double down the left field line. With runners on second and third, Jackson struck out swinging (2-2 pitch) for the first out. With the infield in, David DeJesus pulled a 1-1 pitch into right center. Castillo and Ransom scored, 6-0 Cubs. Borbon lined out to center and Rizzo lined out to left for the third out.
After a long rain delay and six innings, the Cubs led 6-0.
Edwin Jackson gave up a two out single to Jeff Bianchi in the seventh but that was all. Jackson threw 84 pitches, 53 strikes, in seven innings and was still sharp after the rain delay.
The Cubs did nothing in the seventh and Jackson took the hill to start the eighth.
Edwin Jackson caught Logan Schafer looking to start the eighth. Rickie Weeks hit a grounder toward first. Rizzo stopped the ball but Jackson was late covering the bag. Weeks reached on the infield single. Aoki grounded out to second, Weeks moved up ninety feet and scored on a double to left by Jonathan Lucroy. Jackson retired pinch-hitter Juan Francisco on a grounder to Rizzo to end the inning.
The Cubs did nothing in the eighth and Blake Parker took over for Jackson in the ninth with the Cubs up 6-1.
Caleb Gindl reached on an infield single to start the inning. Gindl drove a 2-1 pitch back up the middle that Castro stopped and made a strong throw from his knees, but Gindl just beat the throw. Parker then walked Scooter Gennett. With two on and no outs, Jeff Bianchi blooped a 0-2 pitch into right. The ball fell in between Valbuena, Rizzo and Schierholtz. Schierholtz had the presence of mind to pick the ball up and throw out Gennett at second base. With runners on the corners and one out, Betancourt popped out to DeJesus in shallow center for the second out. Logan Schafer flied out to Schierholtz in right to end the game.
The Cubs open a four-game series against Yasiel Puig and the Dodgers on Thursday night … Chris Rusin against Ricky Nolasco in the opener.