Cubs Break Out the Bats in Boston and Complete the Sweep of the Sox – Cubs 16, Red Sox 9

Game Eighty-Three: Cubs 16, Red Sox 9

WP – Carlos Villanueva (4-5) LP – Brandon Workman (1-2) Save – None

wflag-pub2014The Cubs never trailed on a long, wild night at Fenway Park and completed the three-game sweep of the Red Sox, the Cubs first three-game sweep on the road against an American League team since 2007 when the Cubs won all three games at U.S. Cellular Field. The Cubs outslugged the Sox and used a season-high four home runs and a season-high 10 extra basehits to beat Boston.

The Cubs scored in all but three innings in a game that ended up being three minutes short of the longest nine-inning game, by time, in Cubs history. It took four hours and 19 minutes for the Cubs and Red Sox to wrap up the series Wednesday night.

Justin Ruggiano (3-for-6 with a home run, two doubles and five RBI) had his best game of the season. Ruggiano put the Cubs on the board in the first inning with a two-run shot over the Monster. Mike Olt (2-for-5 with a home run, a double, two RBI and two runs scored) hit his first home run since June 14 in the fourth inning, a two-run homer that cleared the Monster in left center and left Fenway Park. Olt doubled and scored in the sixth and collected his first multi-hit game since May 12.

Welington Castillo (1-for-4 with a home run, a walk and two RBI) hit the Cubs third two-run homer of the game in the fifth inning. Castillo’s sixth longball of the season was his first home run since May 18. And Nate Schierholtz (2-for-5 with a home run, two RBI and two runs scored) hit his second dinger of the series and fifth of the season, a solo shot, in the eighth inning.

Darwin Barney (4-for-5 with a double, a triple, a RBI and two runs scored) collected four hits and was a home run shy of a cycle. Chris Coghlan (1-for-3 with a double, a walk, a sac bunt, a sac fly, two RBI and two runs scored) started the game with a walk and was on board for Ruggiano’s two run homer.

Anthony Rizzo (2-for-5 with a walk, two runs scored and a stolen base) scored the Cubs third run on a single by Starlin Castro (2-for-5 with a RBI, a run scored and a stolen base) in the first inning after he stole his second base of the season. Luis Valbuena (2-for-5 with a double, a RBI and two runs scored) doubled in a run in the ninth. Rizzo was the only Cubs’ position player that did not drive in a run Wednesday night at Fenway Park.

The Cubs scored double digits in runs for the first time since putting 17 on the board against the Cardinals on May 12.

PrintTravis Wood had a bad night and could not complete four innings despite all of the run support. The Red Sox put two runners on base in each of the first two innings, but could not push across a run. Wood gave up a single run in the third and loaded the bases twice in the fourth inning, but still only gave up two runs. Wood threw 31 pitches in the fourth inning, only 12 strikes, and he recorded just two outs before Rick Renteria had to go to his bullpen.

Travis Wood allowed three runs on seven hits with four walks, a hit batsman and three strikeouts. Wood threw 93 pitches, 53 for strikes, in 3 2/3 innings.

Carlos Villanueva replaced Wood in the fourth inning with two on and the Cubs up by three runs at the time and caught Xander Bogaerts looking to end the inning. Villanueva gave up two runs in his two innings of work and James Russell was touched up for a run in 1 1/3 innings. Brian Schlitter was the only Cubs’ pitcher on the night that was not charged with a run. Justin Grimm was hit pretty hard in the ninth and gave up three runs on four hits.

David Ortiz collected the 1,000th extra basehit of his career in the third inning, a ground rule double to right off Travis Wood. Ortiz is just the 36th player in the history of the game with 1,000 extra basehits.

With Wednesday’s victory, the Cubs improved to 37-46 on the season.

The Cubs took advantage of Brandon Workman’s wildness in the first inning and jumped out to an early lead. Chris Coghlan walked to start the game (3-1 pitch). Justin Ruggiano launched a 1-1 pitch over the Monster in left and Ruggiano’s third longball of the season gave the Cubs a 2-0 lead. Anthony Rizzo followed with a walk and stole second on the first pitch to Castro. Starlin Castro worked a full count before ripping a single into left center. Rizzo scored and the Cubs took a 3-0 lead. Castro stole second on a 1-1 pitch to Valbuena but Luis Valbuena struck out swinging for the first out. Castro tagged and went to third on fly out to center off the bat of Welington Castillo. Nate Schierholtz blooped a 1-1 pitch into shallow right that Dustin Pedroia caught to end the inning. Brandon Workman threw 30 pitches, 15 for strikes, in the first inning.

Travis Wood was not sharp in the first inning, but was able to wiggle out of a first and third, two out jam without allowing any runs. Wood threw 25 pitches in the first, 16 for strikes.

After one complete, the Cubs had a 3-0 lead.

The Cubs did nothing in the second and Wood worked out of another jam in the second. The Red Sox put runners on the corners with two down once again but Wood struck out Brock Holt swinging to end the inning. Wood needed 38 pitches, 25 for strikes, to complete two frames Wednesday night … and after two innings, the Sox were 0-for-2 with RISP and left four runners on base.

Anthony Rizzo singled with one out in the third, but that was it for the Cubs offense as Brandon Workman started to find a rhythm. And the Sox went to work against Wood in the third inning.

Dustin Pedroia led off the third with a single to left center (0-1 pitch). David Ortiz collected the 1,000th extra basehit of his career with a ground rule double to right. With runners on second and third with no outs, Mike Napoli tapped back to Wood for the first out. Jonny Gomes lifted a 2-2 pitch into center. Ruggiano caught the ball, Pedroia tagged and scored … 3-1 Cubs. Wood walked Xander Bogaerts and put two on for Pierzynski. Wood struck out A.J. Pierzynski swinging (2-2 pitch) to end the inning. Travis Wood labored through another inning and it took him 62 pitches, 40 for strikes, to complete three innings.

After three innings, the Cubs led 3-1.

Brandon Workman could not find the strike zone and walked Welington Castillo on four pitches to start the fourth. Schierholtz flied out to deep center for the first out. Mike Olt stepped in and crushed a 1-2 pitch. The ball sailed over the Monster and left Fenway Park. Olt’s 11th  longball of the season, first since June 14, put the Cubs up 5-1. Darwin Barney followed with a triple off the Monster and scored when Chris Coghlan drove a 1-2 pitch into left. Gomes caught the ball and Barney tagged and scored, 6-1 Cubs. Ruggiano blooped out to Pedroia to end the inning.

Travis Wood took the hill in the fourth with a 6-1 lead and struck out Mookie Betts for the first out. Wood plunked Jonathan Herrera with a 1-1 pitch and he lost his command at that point. Wood gave up a single to Brock Holt (2-2 pitch) and walked Dustin Pedroia to load the bases. David Ortiz made it a 6-2 game with a fly to center that allowed Herrera to tag and score from third. Wood issued a four-pitch walk to Mike Napoli to reload the bases. Wood then missed on his first three pitches to Gomes. Wood finally threw a strike but Jonny Gomes ripped a 3-1 pitch into left. Holt scored, 6-3 Cubs and Rick Renteria decided that was enough for Wood. With the bases loaded and two down, Carlos Villanueva caught Bogaerts looking at a 2-2 pitch to end the inning. The Red Sox were 1-for-6 with runners in scoring position after four innings and left nine men on base.

The Cubs led the Sox 6-3 after four innings.

Felix Doubront replaced Workman in the fifth. Doubront retired Rizzo on a flyout to left and struck out Castro swinging on a 3-2 pitch for the first two outs. Luis Valbuena singled to left. Welington Castillo drove a 1-2 pitch to deep center. The ball carried into the first row of the bleachers just to the right of straight away center and the Cubs took an 8-3 lead on Castillo’s sixth longball of the season. Schierholtz struck out swinging to end the inning.

Carlos Villanueva stayed in for the fifth and issued a walk to Pierzynski to start the inning. Villanueva fell behind Betts 2-1 and the rookie made him pay for it. Mookie Betts launched a 2-1 pitch onto the top of the Monster and his first big league homer cut the Cubs lead to 8-5. Herrera tried to bunt his way on, but Castillo threw him out at first. Villanueva caught Holt looking at a 0-2 pitch for the second out. Pedroia flied out to right (2-2 pitch) to finally end the fifth inning.

After five innings, the Cubs had an 8-5 lead.

Mike Olt led off the sixth with a double off the wall in left center. Darwin Barney worked a full count against Felix Doubront before reaching on an infield single to the hold at short. Olt held at second and the Cubs had runners on first and second with no outs for Chris Coghlan. Coghlan bunted up the third baseline. Doubront picked up the ball and threw him out at first as Olt and Barney moved up ninety feet. John Farrell decided that was enough for Doubront and went to his pen for Burke Badenhop. Justin Ruggiano singled to right center past the drawn-in infield. Olt scored, 9-5 Cubs. With runners on the corners and one out, Rizzo grounded into a 4-6-3 double play to end the inning.

Carlos Villanueva stayed in for the sixth and David Ortiz reached on an error by Mike Olt. The Cubs were in a shift for Ortiz and Olt fielded the ball near the right field line, 70 feet from the first base bag. Olt could not make the throw and Ortiz reached. Mike Napoli doubled to left and the Sox had runners on second and third with no outs. Gomes grounded out to third, both runners held. Bogaerts grounded out to first. Rizzo fielded the ball and threw to the plate. And Ortiz was tagged out for the second out of the inning. With runners on first and second with two down, Renteria went to his pen for James Russell. A.J. Pierzynski popped Russell’s first pitch into left for the third out … and the Sox were 1-for-9 with RISP and left 11 men on base in the first six innings.

The Cubs had a 9-5 lead after six innings.

The Cubs went down in order in the seventh and James Russell gave up a two-out single to Brock Holt in the seventh, but that was all. The game went to the eighth with the Cubs up by four runs, 9-5.

Nate Schierholtz led off the eighth and smacked a solo home run to right off Edward Mujica. Schierholtz’s second homer of the series and fifth of the season gave the Cubs a 10-5 lead. Olt struck out swinging for the first out. Darwin Barney doubled down the left field line for his third hit of the game. But Coghlan tapped back to the mound and Ruggiano struck out swinging to end the inning.

James Russell started the bottom of the eighth and gave up a ground rule double to David Ortiz. Renteria went to the pen and brought in Brian Schlitter to face Napoli. Napoli smacked a single off the Monster in left center. Ortiz scored, 10-6 Cubs. Gomes then tapped back to the mound, but Schlitter threw to the wrong man covering second. Schlitter threw to Barney, who ran over and touched second for the out but could not complete the double play. Schlitter caught Bogaerts looking at a 2-2 pitch for the second out. Pierzynski struck out swinging to end the inning.

The Cubs led 10-6 after eight innings.

Craig Breslow took over for Edward Mujica in the ninth. Anthony Rizzo and Starlin Castro started the ninth with back-to-back singles. Luis Valbuena followed with a double to right, Rizzo scored and the Cubs took an 11-6 lead. With runners on second and third with no outs, Castillo struck out swinging. Nate Schierholtz singled to center, Castro scored, 12-6 Cubs. With runners on the corners and one down, Olt popped out to first. John Farrell went to his pen and replaced Breslow with Junichi Tazawa. Darwin Barney singled in Valbuena with his fourth straight hit, 13-6 Cubs. Chris Coghlan followed with a double to right center that plated Schierholtz, 14-6 Cubs. With runners on second and third with two down, Justin Ruggiano put the exclamation point on his night. Ruggiano doubled to left center. Barney and Coghlan scored, 16-6 Cubs. Rizzo hit for the second time in the inning and popped out to Pedroia to end the inning.

Justin Grimm started the ninth inning of the game that would not end. Mookie Betts reached on an infield single to third to start the inning. Herrera flied out to center for the first out. But Brock Holt singled to right and put runners on the corners with one out. Dustin Pedroia doubled to center, Betts scored and cut the Cubs lead to 16-7. Daniel Nava hit for David Ortiz with runners on second and third and one out. Nava singled to right. Holt and Pedroia scored, 16-9 Cubs. Grimm caught Napoli looking for the second out … and Jonny Gomes was caught looking at a 3-2 pitch to end the game.

Thursday is an off-day and the Cubs open a three-game series on Friday morning (10:05am CDT), the Fourth of July, in the Nation’s Capital. Jason Hammel is scheduled to face Tanner Roark in the opener against the Nationals.

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  • paulcatanese

    I love these tight games:)

  • Pingback: Cubs Break Out the Bats in Boston and Complete the Sweep of the Sox – Cubs 16, Red Sox 9 - Cubs Chronicles

  • jtrain23

    I know that what you can take from games such as this is limited. I was very pleased, however, with many of the at bats tonight. You can never complain about scoring 16 runs, but the approach tonight will help win any kind of games. The line up demonstrated patience and proper swings depending on the count. They used all fields and scored runs in many different ways (long ball, manufacturing, extra base hits, useful out, etc.).

    I know it is still not consistent enough to contend, but I continue to see the signs. I believe we are witnessing a very young team coming to age. In 3-4 years, we will look back to this summer and say “That is when they turned the corner”.

    I know I’m being overly optimistic and reactive of a small sample size, but you have to find the positives sometimes or the negatives will weigh you down. In the words of Charlie Chaplin, “You’ll never find a rainbow if you’re looking down”.

    • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

      I would agree with you. I think that guys like Rizzo and Castro are certainly coming into their own. I don’t know how many of the other guys will even be around in a few years but this has been a season with some growth. Pitching has been great and Renteria is looking like he knows what he’s doing, while still needing some seasoning.

  • triple

    The Cubs are playing confidently now. It would be great to see Hammel have a repeat performance against the Nats on Friday alotg with another large serving of offense.