Game Thirty-Three – Cubs 0, Padres 1
WP – Drew Pomeranz (4-3) LP – John Lackey (4-2) Save – Fernando Rodney (10)
For the first time this season the Cubs lost back-to-back games. John Lackey gave up one run on a solo homer by Christian Bethancourt in the fifth inning but the Cubs offense could not come up with a clutch hit. The Cubs dropped both games of Wednesday’s doubleheader to the Padres proving once again you can’t predict baseball.
The Cubs played longer into a season than any team since the 1929 Philadelphia A’s before losing back-to-back games.
John Lackey made one mistake in what was otherwise an excellent outing. Lackey stepped up and gave Joe Maddon exactly what he needed in the second game of the doubleheader. Lackey completed eight innings and surrendered just the one run on three hits. Lackey struck out eight and did not issue a free pass. Travis Wood and Hector Rondon combined on a 1-2-3 ninth inning.
The Cubs outhit the Padres (4-3) but could not buy a hit with runners in scoring position. The Cubs were 0-for-7 with RISP and left nine men on base. Jason Heyward (1-for-3 with a walk), Kris Bryant (1-for-3 with a walk), Anthony Rizzo (0-for-3 with a walk), Javier Baez (1-for-3 with a walk), Tommy La Stella (1-for-4) and David Ross (0-for-2 with a walk) reached base in Wednesday’s loss.
The Cubs best chance to tie or take the lead came in the eighth inning. Jason Heyward walked on four pitches with two outs against Brad Hand. Kris Bryant hit a Major League pop up to shortstop that Alexei Ramirez dropped. Heyward advanced to third with two outs. Hand wanted nothing to do with Anthony Rizzo and walked him on four pitches.
Jorge Soler (0-for-4 with four strikeouts) capped what was a bad night and struck out swinging to end the inning.
With Wednesday night’s loss, the Cubs slipped to 25-8 on the season … 17 games above .500.
The Cubs are off on Thursday and resume the homestand on Friday afternoon (1:20pm CDT) with the first of three against the Pirates. Jason Hammel is scheduled to face Francisco Liriano.