National League Championship Series Game 2 – Cubs 1, Mets 4
WP – Noah Syndergaard (1-0) LP – Jake Arrieta (0-1) Save – Jeurys Familia (2)
Jake Arrieta gave up three runs in the first inning and was lifted after five innings with the Cubs down 4-0. Kris Bryant doubled in Dexter Fowler in the sixth for the only run. And Arrieta lost for the first time since July 25 as the Cubs dropped game two of the NLCS on Sunday night.
For the second straight game, the Cubs could not dig out of an early hole on a cold night at Citi Field.
Jake Arrieta did not have it Sunday night. But he did not pitch as poorly as his final line indicates. Arrieta missed his spots while the ball continued to bounce the Mets way. The first three batters Arrieta faced scored and he barely made it through four innings as his pitch count escalated. Arrieta threw 30 pitches in the opening inning.
The big hit off Arrieta came in the first inning. Daniel Murphy continued his free agent push and drilled a two-run homer off Arrieta in the first. The Mets manufactured a run in the third inning. Arrieta has struggled all season with runners swiping bases when he’s on the mound. Curtis Granderson stole second and third and scored on an infield single by Yoenis Cespedes.
Travis Wood completed two scoreless innings with four strikeouts. And the Cubs pen allowed only one hit in relief of Arrieta. Travis Wood, Clayton Richard and Pedro Strop shut the Mets down and gave the offense a chance to mount a comeback.
Nothing went the Cubs’ way Sunday night. The Mets scored a run on an infield hit and two runs on a homer with an exit velocity in which less than one percent of the balls hit as hard as Murphy did leave the park. The Cubs continued squaring up Mets’ pitching and Chris Coghlan was robbed of a home run by Curtis Granderson.
The Cubs managed only two baserunners through five innings … a single by Kris Bryant in the first inning and a walk by Dexter Fowler in the third.
The Cubs had a total of five hits and only three players reached base Sunday. Dexter Fowler (2-for-3 with a walk and a run scored), Kris Bryant (2-for-4 with a double and a RBI) and Anthony Rizzo (1-for-4). The Cubs did not put two men on base in the same inning all night.
With Sunday’s loss, the Cubs trail the Mets 2-0 in the best of seven NLCS.
The Cubs managed a two-out single by Kris Bryant in the first inning, but that was all. The Cubs worked the at bats and made Syndergaard throw 20 pitches, 14 for strikes, in the first.
Jake Arrieta had a rough first inning. The Mets jumped on his mistakes and scored three runs. Arrieta made 30 pitches in the opening inning. Granderson singled to right (2-2 pitch). With Granderson running, David Wright cranked a 2-1 pitch over Fowler’s head in center. Fowler appeared to misplay the ball. Granderson scored, 1-0 Mets. Daniel Murphy followed with a home run to right (1-2 pitch) and the Mets took a 3-0 lead. Arrieta settled down and retired Cespedes (foul out to Rizzo), Duda (swinging strikeout) and d’Arnaud (called out on strikes) to finally end the inning.
The Mets led 3-0 after one inning.
The Cubs could not buy a hit or a break in the second or third innings. Curtis Granderson robbed Chris Coghlan of a homer with a leaping catch at the wall in right center in the second.
Jake Arrieta retired six in a row after giving up the homer to Murphy in the first inning. But he walked Curtis Granderson to start the third. Arrieta struck out Wright swinging (1-2 pitch) as Granderson stole second base. Arrieta was asked to walk Murphy. Arrieta did not want to but after a meeting with Montero, Murphy was given the intentional free pass to put two on with one down for Cespedes.
Curtis Granderson stole third on a 1-0 pitch to Cespedes and scored on an infield single to short, 4-0 Mets. Baez got to the ball but had no play. With Murphy at second and Cespedes at first and one out, Duda popped out to short. d’Arnaud grounded out to second base to end the inning. Arrieta made 65 pitches, 34 for strikes, in three innings.
The Mets had a commanding 4-0 lead after three innings.
The Cubs had only two baserunners reach against Syndergaard in the first five innings. The game went to the sixth with the Mets still leading 4-0. Tommy La Stella batted for Arrieta and flied out to center (2-2 pitch). Dexter Fowler singled to right (2-2 pitch). The Cubs second hit of the night. A wild pitch on the first offering to Schwarber allowed Fowler to take second base. Kyle Schwarber struck out swinging.
Kris Bryant just missed hitting the ball out of the park. Bryant pulled a 3-1 pitch from Syndergaard off the left field wall. Fowler scored, 4-1 Mets. Bryant stopped at second with a double. Terry Collins made the slow walk and replaced Syndergaard with lefty Jon Niese.
Anthony Rizzo worked a full count before striking out swinging for the third out.
Travis Wood took over in the sixth and pitched a 1-2-3 inning.
The Mets led 4-1 after six innings.
And that would be the final score. The Cubs’ pen kept the Mets from tacking on. The offense could not string together any hits or baserunners against the Mets’ staff.
The NLCS resumes Tuesday at Wrigley Field … Kyle Hendricks versus Jacob deGrom in Game 3 of the National League Championship Series.