The Cubs wrapped up the best seven-game stretch the franchise has seen since 2008 on Sunday, even with the loss to the Pirates in the finale. Sunday was frankly one of those games a team loses during a long season.
After sweeping the Mets, the Cubs won a 12-inning game Friday afternoon with an unbelievable ending that will make the highlight reels for years to come. Anthony Rizzo and Kris Bryant homered Friday and ‘The Bash Brothers’ kept the pressure on the Pirates staff throughout the weekend until Bryant had to leave Sunday’s game with dehydration.
The Cubs announced several changes to the roster … and down on the farm, Kyle Schwarber and Albert Almora hit longballs.
Here are the headlines from the last three days …
Cubs Promote OF Billy McKinney to Double-A Tennessee and Minor League Roster Moves
In a move that was expected, the Cubs promoted OF Billy McKinney to Double-A Tennessee. McKinney became the youngest position player in the Southern League after tearing up the Carolina League as a 20-year old. McKinney joined a very talented roster at Double-A Tennessee that already included C/OF Kyle Schwarber, 1B Dan Vogelbach, OF Albert Almora Jr., RHP Carl Edwards Jr., RHP Corey Black and OF Jacob Hannemann.
The Cubs announced several other minor league transactions and unfortunately cut players that had been followed closely for many years.
Cubs Down on the Farm Report – 05/15/15
The end of the week recap of the games Down on the Farm included Billy McKinney’s Double-A debut. Ivan Pineyro turned in an excellent outing. And Gleyber Torres just keeps hitting.
Rambling About the Cubs While Waiving My Broom
Brian’s rambling column returned after a short absence as he celebrated the sweep over the Cubs’ longtime rival the New York Mets. Anthony Rizzo, Len Kasper and Jim Deshaies, Starlin Castro and Jorge Soler were among the topics he rambled about on Friday.
The Daily CCO: Time to Build on a Sweep and Cubs News and Notes
Joe Maddon won the 800th game of his career on Thursday when the Cubs completed the four-game sweep over the Mets. And the milestone came almost 19 years to the day he won his first game.
Updates on Tommy La Stella, David Ross, Tsuyoshi Wada and Javier Baez were included, along with all of the news, notes and links … plus This Day in Cubs History.
Cubs Win on an Unbelievable Finish to a Wild Day at Wrigley – Cubs 11, Pirates 10
The winning run actually scored after Pirates’ right fielder Gregory Polanco slipped and fell down with the bases loaded in the 12 inning. Matt Szczur was credited with the game winner on a play that appeared it would be an exact duplicate to the one that ended the 10th inning.
Kris Bryant and Anthony Rizzo hit home runs. Maddon had to use his entire bullpen. James Russell stepped up with two scoreless innings and Edwin Jackson picked up the win.
The Cubs had two big leads in the game that were gone by the ninth inning. But the Cubs found a way to win with a little help from the Pirates defense.
Kyle Schwarber Smacks Seventh Homer in Smokies Win
After cooling off for a game or two, Kyle Schwarber got his bat going again for Double-A Tennessee. Schwarber collected three hits in four trips to the plate in the Smokies’ win on Friday night that included his seventh homer of the season.
‘The Bash Brothers’ are having a very good season. And Kyle Schwarber is showing his bat is close to being ready for the big leagues while he learns how to be a receiver.
The Daily CCO: Javier Baez is Feeling Good at the Plate and Other Cubs News
Javier Baez is producing for Iowa and appears to be applying changes to his approach that he discussed with the front office and coaching staff at the end of Spring Training. Baez started slow but seems to be locked in. Baez told the Des Moines Register this is the best he’s felt since his time at Double-A Tennessee.
Includes updates on Tommy La Stella, David Ross, Albert Almora Jr., Joe Maddon and James Russell entered the Cubs’ record books. Plus all of the news, notes and This Day in Cubs History.
From the Wire: Cubs Recall RHP Brian Schlitter, Option OF Matt Szczur to Triple-A Iowa
The Cubs made Saturday what should be the first of a series of roster moves. Matt Szczur drove in the game winner Friday and was sent to Iowa less than 24 hours later … because the Cubs did not have another option to add a reliever to the active roster. Brian Schlitter was given an opportunity to show he can get big league hitters out.
Jon Lester Leads the Way, Cubs Win Sixth in a Row – Cubs 4, Pirates 1
The Cubs made it six straight Saturday behind an excellent outing from Jon Lester. The Pirates managed one run off Lester in seven innings. And the Cubs offense scored two runs off Gerrit Cole, and beat him for the first time, without a hit that produced a run. Productive outs were the key for the Cubs and taking advantage of the Pirates’ miscues.
Addison Russell turned in a web gem and Travis Wood earned his first save.
Cubs Move Travis Wood to the Bullpen
The Cubs moved Travis Wood to the bullpen and he picked up the first save of his professional career before the Cubs ever said a word about their decision. With Wood in the pen, LHP Tsuyoshi Wada was inserted into his spot in the rotation.
The Daily CCO: Albert Almora Jr. Went Deep for the First Time this Season and Other Cubs News
Albert Almora Jr. is getting back on track after a stint on the DL temporarily slowed him down. Almora Jr. hit his first homer of the season on Saturday night, a two-run shot.
Updates on Javier Baez, Carl Edwards Jr., Jorge Soler, Sean Marshall and some impressive stats on Anthony Rizzo and Kris Bryant are included … plus This Day in Cubs History.
Two Out of Three Ain’t Bad – Pirates 3, Cubs 0
The Cubs were not able to complete the sweep and lost the third game of the series to the Pirates. Jake Arrieta did his job and was charged with one run over seven innings. After Kris Bryant left the game due to dehydration, the Cubs offense had a big hole that no one could fill.
Joe Maddon got his Meat Loaf, because the Cubs took two of three from the Pirates.
Cubs Announce LHP Tsuyoshi Wada to Start Wednesday in San Diego
Follow Sunday’s game, Joe Maddon announced LHP Tsuyoshi Wada would start Wednesday for the Cubs in San Diego. A move that was expected since Thursday was finally made official.
Joe Maddon is scheduled to run out Jason Hammel (Tuesday), Tsuyoshi Wada (Wednesday) and Kyle Hendricks (Thursday) in the three games with the Padres.