In case you haven’t noticed, these Cubs play until the last out of the game is recorded. And the days of mailing in a game early are over.
The Cubs have been in just about every one of the 16 games this season, nine of the 16 games have been decided by two runs or less. Eight of the last 12 games have been decided by one run and the Cubs are 4-4 in those eight games. Five of the nine wins have come in their last at bat. The Cubs have won three games this season after trailing going into the eighth inning. And the Cubs are 3-0 in extra innings over the first 16 games.
Friday night was the fourth time the Cubs have won a game this season when trailing after six innings.
Jon Lester had his best start of the season Friday night in Cincinnati. Lester recorded a quality start after a rough three innings and looked more like Jon Lester over the final two innings of his outing. Lester gave up three runs on five hits with a walk and 10 strikeouts.
Following the game Lester told the beat writers he got into a better rhythm after the second inning. And he thought he finally got a feel for his cutter, which is a major key to his success.
According to ESPN, Lester “got a season-high four strikeouts off the cutter and gave up a season-low two hits.
Joe Maddon said that Lester keeps getting better and is trending in the right direction. And the Sun-Times pointed out that Lester hit 93 mph on the gun Friday night in route to a season-high 10 strikeouts.
- Full Report from ESPN Chicago
- Full Report from the Sun-Times
- Full Report from the Tribune
- Full Report from Comcast SportsNet
According to reports from Tommy Birch of the Des Moines Register, Barret Loux left Friday night’s game in the third inning with an apparent arm injury. The Des Moines Register reported Loux was shaking his arm as he walked off the field.
Brian Harper, who is filling in for I-Cubs’ manager Marty Pevey, told the Des Moines Register that he thinks Loux felt something in his elbow. An update on Loux should be provided Saturday.
Barret Loux missed last season recovering from Tommy John surgery and shoulder surgery.
News, Notes and Rumors
• Pedro Strop was unavailable Friday night because of a foot infection. Strop saw a doctor and is expected to be available for Saturday’s game.
• Late-inning magic propels Cubs again according to ESPN Chicago.
• Kris Bryant picked up his first hit as an outfielder during the 11th inning rally. Bryant has played third base, center field and left field over his first eight big league games. Bryant is 11-for-29 with four doubles, eight walks and eight strikeouts (.379/.526/.517) for a 1.044 OPS.
• LHP Rob Zastryzny was activated from the DL. Zastryzny was scheduled to start Friday night’s game against Jackson. The game was postponed due to rain. Zastryzny was pushed to Saturday night against the Chattanooga Lookouts.
• The Cubs are one of five teams off to a hot start and have exceeded expectations according to Jim Duquette. And Duquette thinks the Cubs will be in contention all season.
• Addison Russell answered five questions for ESPN Chicago.
• Jake Arrieta and Hector Rondon defended Jeff Samardzija’s actions in Thursday’s brawl with the Royals.
• According to Jesse Rogers, Junior Lake would have been called up if Dexter Fowler would have landed on the DL. Lake was on standby in case Fowler couldn’t play Friday night.
• After delivering the game winner Friday night, Jonathan Herrera is 4-for-7 with runners in scoring position this season.
And last, but not least, the Reds honored Ernie Banks at Great American Ball Park prior to Friday night’s game. The Reds are the second team the Cubs has visited this season to recognize the passing and celebrate the life of one of the greats in the game.
This Day In Cubstory
2006 – Cubs released Jamal Strong
1990 – Cubs signed free agents Chico Walker and Pat Sheridan
1990 – Playing for the Red Sox in his last season in baseball, Bill Buckner hit the final home run of his career, an inside the park home run in a 3-1 loss to the Angels.
1989 – The Cubs celebrated the 75th Anniversary of Wrigley Field with a 4-0 victory over the Dodgers. Bob Wright threw out the first pitch. Billy Williams, Billy Herman and Andy Pafko were among the former players that attended the celebration.
1978 – In a game against the Cubs at Veterans Stadium in Philadelphia, the Phillie Phanatic made its debut.
1976 – Cubs centerfielder Rick Monday rescued the U.S. flag in the fourth inning from two radicals trying to set it on fire in the outfield at Dodger Stadium.
1975 – Jacque Jones, born
1975 – Cubs signed free agent Eddie Watt
1969 – Padres traded Dick Selma to the Cubs for Frankie Libran, Joe Niekro and Gary Ross
1967 – Cubs traded a PTBNL and cash to the Indians for Dick Radatz. The Cubs sent Bob Raudman to the Indians on Nov. 21, 1967 to complete the trade.
1966 – Erik Pappas, born
1958 – Dave Owen, born
1907 – Roy Parmelee, born
1898 – Red Thomas, born
1896 – Marty Shay, born
1896 – Fred Haney, born
1892 – Pete Standridge, born
1876 – First game in franchise history … Albert Spalding pitched the first shutout in National League history in the 4-0 victory over Louisville. Paul Hines scored the first run in the second inning on a wild throw.