The Cubs took the next step in the process Tuesday by winning the NLDS and now Joe Maddon’s team awaits the winner of the Dodgers-Mets series on Thursday.
Counting the five post-season games, the Cubs are 50-20 since July 27 and have lost one game since Sept. 28.
The Cubs played small ball in Game 2 and scored four of the six runs without a ball leaving the infield. The bats woke up in the second inning of Saturday’s game and the Cubs hit 10 home runs off Cardinals pitching. All but one run in games three and four scored on nine home runs hit by seven different players … Anthony Rizzo, Kyle Schwarber, Jorge Soler, Starlin Castro, Dexter Fowler, Kris Bryant and Javier Baez.
The Cubs won the NLDS even though Jon Lester was the only starter to turn in a quality start. Cubs’ starters allowed 12 earned runs in 20 2/3 innings pitched (5.23 ERA) and gave up six home runs. The bullpen really stepped up in the three games the Cubs won. And in games three and four at Wrigley Field, the pen allowed a combined four runs on seven hits with a walk and 17 strikeouts in 9 1/3 innings.
The Cubs are expected to reset the roster for the NLCS according to ESPN Chicago. And it could be just minor moves. Jason Motte could be added to the bullpen and Quintin Berry might be placed on the roster. And Addison Russell will benefit from the break before Game 1 of the NLCS. Russell’s hamstring injury is not believed to be serious and he is expected to be ready to play by Saturday.
According to Jesse Rogers, the Cubs will take Wednesday off. There will be a workout Thursday at Wrigley Field. The team will watch Game 5 of the NLDS between the Dodgers and Mets. And fly out to either Los Angeles or New York on Friday.
Major League Baseball has not announced a starting time for Game 1 of the National League Championship Series. The NLCS starts Saturday at Dodger Stadium or Citi Field.
Reports from Game 4 of NLDS
The Cubs closed out the Cardinals in four games and advanced to the NLCS. Here are the numerous reports from the celebration at Wrigley Field …
- USA Today: Cubs knock out Cardinals, advance to NLCS with Wrigley party
- ESPN Chicago: Cubs advance to NLCS behind epic power surge
- Comcast SportsNet: Javier Baez steps into a starring role for Cubs to help finish Cardinals
- ESPN Chicago: By putting away the Cardinals, the Cubs earn the right to keep their party going
- Bruce Levine: Tom Ricketts wants two more celebrations
- Comcast SportsNet: Joe Maddon has built a Cubs bullpen that plays in October
- ESPN Chicago: Cubs’ power takes them to the NLCS
- Chicago Tribune: Young Cubs make history at old Wrigley Field in advancing to NLCS
- Comcast SportsNet: At Wrigley, Cubs become baseball’s biggest party and best story
- Yahoo Sports: The Cubs are the team that can make October belong to baseball again
- Comcast SportsNet: Jake Arrieta on Cubs: ‘Nobody wants to play us right now’
- The Sun-Times: The ‘Young and the reckless:’ Cubs kids knock off Cards for NLCS berth
- The Sun-Times: Kyle Schwarber’s massive home run symbolic of Chicago Cubs’ fun playoffs ride
News and Notes
• Kerry Wood threw out the ceremonial first pitch prior to Game 4. Wood, like Ryne Sandberg, wore an Ernie Banks jersey. Wood went one step further and also wore a Ron Santo ‘10’ hat.
• Six of the nine home runs the Cubs hit in games three and four were by players born in the 1990’s … Kyle Schwarber, Kris Bryant, Starlin Castro, Jorge Soler and Javier Baez. And Baez became the first non-pitcher in a starting lineup to hit a home run out of a 9-spot in the batting order in a National League park in post-season history.
• Javier Baez told Patrick Mooney after the game, “It’s been a tough year for me, but life continues. That’s what I’m doing. I’m living my life, living my dream.”
• As Jeff Passan pointed out, the Cubs received home runs in games three and four from six players 26 years or younger … Anthony Rizzo (26), Starlin Castro (25), Kris Bryant (23), Jorge Soler (23), Kyle Schwarber (22) and Javier Baez (22).
• According to ESPN, Anthony Rizzo is the first player in post-season history to homer off the same pitcher in consecutive games within a post-season series.
• Bursting with confidence, Starlin Castro strikes back in Cubs-Cardinals rivalry according to a report from Comcast SportsNet.
• Jason Hammel and Kyle Hendricks drove in runs during the NLDS … Hendricks in Game 2 and Hammel in Game 4. Hendricks and Hammel are the first two Cubs pitchers to drive in runs in the same post-season since Ed Reulbach and Oval Overall in 1907.
• Jorge Soler is succeeding with sudden onset plate discipline according to Alec Dopp.
And last, but not least, the Cubs claim the ball Kyle Schwarber hit landed on top of the scoreboard in right field. But multiple internet reports indicated the ball took flight and actually landed much further away from Wrigley than Schwarber is being created for hitting his moonshot. All jokes aside, what a shot, enjoy it again and again.
This Day In Cubstory
2010 – Cubs granted free agency to Bobby Scales
2003 – Game Six of the NLCS, The Steve Bartman Game … With the Cubs up 3-0 in the eighth inning, a foul ball and an error by SS Alex Gonzalez opened the door for the Marlins. Florida scored eight runs, won the game and forced a game seven. The collapse is blamed on Steve Bartman, but the error by Alex Gonzalez is what led to the loss.
1992 – Cubs granted fee agency to Brad Arnsberg
1982 – Carlos Marmol, born
1968 – Expos selected Bill Stoneman from the Cubs in the 1968 expansion draft (19th overall pick)
1968 – Padres selected Rick James from the Cubs in the 1968 expansion draft
1964 – Joe Girardi, born
1952 – Cubs signed amateur free agent Bob Thorpe
1949 – Cubs purchased Paul Minner from the Dodgers for $100,000.
1941 – Art Shamsky, born
1935 – Philadelphia selected Jim Oglesby from the Cubs in the Rule 5 Draft
1930 – Cubs purchased Jakie May from the Reds
1930 – Cubs traded Bill McAfee and Wes Schulmerich to the Braves for Bob Smith and Jimmy Welsh
1908 – The Cubs won their second straight World Series by beating the Tigers 2-0 in game five. The Cubs won the Fall Classic, four games to one. Upset with seating arrangements at the World Series, a group of sports reporters formed what will become the Baseball Writers Association of America (BBWAA).
1906 – Cubs lost 8-3 to the White Sox at South Side Grounds in the sixth and final game of the World Series. The Southsiders won the first one-city World Series four games to two.
1885 – The Chicago National League Ball Club scored four runs in the eighth inning and tied the American Association St. Louis Browns 5-5 in the Championship Series opener in Chicago. The Browns were managed by Charles Comiskey. The game was called after eight innings because of darkness at West Side Park.