The Cubs became the first team in the Senior Circuit to 50 wins on the season with the 7-2 extra innings victory over the Reds on Tuesday night. It what is being called ‘The Joe Maddon Game,’ the Cubs skipper worked his magic in extra innings.
The Cubs are 50-26 (.658) on the season, the only team in the National League with 50 wins. The Cubs will enter play Wednesday with the best winning percentage in baseball.
Joe Maddon’s team has won 50 of its first 76 games, the fastest the Cubs have reached 50 wins since the 1918 Cubs won 50 of the first 71 games. The Cubs did not post its 50th win until game No. 92 last season (The Schwarber Game in Cincinnati). It took the 2014 Cubs until game No. 116 to win its 50th game.
And the Cubs are 15-11 this month with two games left on the schedule in June. The Cubs have been .500 or better in each of the 10 months that Joe Maddon has managed the team.
Joe Maddon pulled out all the stops in extra innings Tuesday night. And the Cubs won what Pat Hughes called an amazing game. It was truly a team win as Maddon used 22 of the 25 players on his active roster. Jake Arrieta, Kyle Hendricks and John Lackey were the only three players that did not take the field.
The Cubs set records for the second game in a row. Maddon used three relievers to play left field in the last three innings. Maddon became the first manager since 1913 to use six different players in left field in the same game.
The Cubs have hit two home runs in extra innings this season, both have come off the bat of Javier Baez. And Baez’s slam in the 15th inning was the latest in a game a Cubs’ player has hit a Grand Slam in franchise history.
The Cubs became the first team to use five left fielders in a game since the Seattle Mariners on Sept. 11, 1992. Maddon used Willson Contreras, Matt Szczur, Chris Coghlan, Spencer Patton and Travis Wood in the first 14 innings. Pedro Strop became the sixth different left fielder for the Cubs in Tuesday’s game … something no team has done since at least 1913.
Christopher Kamka pointed out the last time two pitchers played the outfield for one team was the Giants on Sept. 28, 1986 (Randy Bockus and Jeff Robinson). Kamka could not find a team that had three pitchers play the outfield in the same game. Baseball Reference’s index goes back to 1913.
Joe Maddon gave Travis Wood all of the credit for Tuesday’s win according to ESPN Chicago. Wood wasn’t supposed to pitch much less go back and forth between left field and the mound.
David Ross said on Twitter, “What a game! Think that is the definition of a team win!!”
Here are the post-game reports and recap from what was an unforgettable game …
- CCO – Maddon Works Magic in Extra Innings for Cubs Win
- ESPN Chicago – Cubs use three different pitchers as outfielders en route to 15-inning win
- The Sun-Times – It’s a mad, mad, Maddon work as Cubs win in 15 innings
- The Tribune – All hands on deck in Cubs’ 15-inning win
- The Tribune – Joe Maddon pulls out all the stops in 15-inning win against the Reds
- ESPN – By the numbers: Chicago Cubs get win No. 50
Tommy La Stella
Tommy La Stella made his second rehab start for the Iowa Cubs on Tuesday. Reports have suggested La Stella is on track to catch up with the Cubs on Thursday for the opener of the four-game series in New York.
Tommy La Stella went 1-for-3 with a walk and a RBI. Jeimer Candelario replaced La Stella at third base late in the game. La Stella is 3-for-6 with a home run and a walk in two rehab games.
Iowa is off Wednesday and begins a series with Round Rock on Thursday with a doubleheader.
Clayton Richard reported to Iowa and started Tuesday’s game against Oklahoma City. Richard tossed a perfect inning and made 11 pitches, eight for strikes. Richard struck out two of the three batters he faced.
Aaron Brooks was scheduled to piggy-back Clayton Richard on Tuesday. Rain shortened Richard’s first rehab appearance. Brooks took over on the mound when play resumed and allowed one run on four hits in four innings. Brooks made 54 pitches, 41 for strikes, and picked up the win.
It was reported Monday that Tim Federowicz had cleared waivers and was reporting to Triple-A Iowa. But that report may have been premature.
Federowicz did clear waivers after being designated for assignment. The Cubs outrighted him to Triple-A Iowa. But Federowicz has not decided to report to Iowa.
Carrie Muskat reported Tuesday that Federowicz is “still deciding whether to join Iowa.” Federowicz can elect free agency which would allow him to sign with another team.
Cubs-Mets Probable Pitchers
The first series of the season between the Cubs and Mets begins Thursday night at Citi Field.
The Cubs fly to New York following Wednesday’s game with the Reds. The two teams have not posted the starting pitchers for all four games yet. But the matchups for the first three are set.
Due to the bone spurs Steven Matz is dealing with in his elbow, the Mets pushed him back a day. Instead of facing the Nationals, Matz will open the series against the Cubs on Thursday night. John Lackey gets game one for the Cubs.
Here are the probable starters for the first three games at Citi Field:
- Thursday, June 30 (6:10pm CDT) – RHP John Lackey vs. LHP Steven Matz
- Friday, July 1 (6:10pm CDT) – RHP Jason Hammel vs. RHP Jacob deGrom
- Saturday, July 2 (6:15pm CDT) – RHP Jake Arrieta vs. RHP Bartolo Colon
The finale of the series on Sunday afternoon (12:10pm CDT) is lined up to be Jon Lester versus Noah Syndergaard.
News, Notes and Rumors
• Jorge Soler participated in early batting practice Tuesday.
• According to the Sun-Times, former starter Travis Wood unlikely linchpin for Cubs’ sagging bullpen.
• The Sun-Times explained why the Cubs need to ‘fix’ and ace who’s 12-2 with a 2.10 ERA.
• Ben Zobrist led off Tuesday’s game with a home run, the fifth time this season a Cubs’ leadoff hitter started a game with a longball. Dexter Fowler has led off a game with a dinger three times. Tuesday was the second game Zobrist started with a homer. According to Christopher Kamka, this is the first season two different Cubs players have had multiple leadoff homers in a season since 2002 … Corey Patterson (2) and Mark Bellhorn (2) were the last Cubs teammates to begin multiple games with longballs in the same season.
• According to the Tribune, Joe Maddon believes Kris Bryant’s versatility will separate him from the other elite players.
• To take a road curtain call or not? Kris Bryant’s teammates weighed in on the subject with ESPN Chicago.
• The Tribune reported Joe Maddon visualizes five Cubs All-Star starters.
This Day in Cubstory
2011 – Cubs released Doug Davis
2007 – Aramis Ramirez hit an improbable two-run walk off homer in the bottom of the ninth against Brewers’ closer Francisco Cordero and gave the Cubs a 6-5 win over Milwaukee. The Cubs were down 5-0 after the top of the first and never quit on a Friday afternoon at Wrigley Field.
2005 – Cubs released Joe Borowski
1988 – Brooks Raley, born
1970 – Cubs signed free agent Al Spangler
1970 – Braves purchased Jimmie Hall from the Cubs
1969 – Billy Williams Day at Wrigley Field. 41,060 saw Williams collect five hits in a doubleheader sweep over the Cardinals, 3-1 and 12-1. Williams passed Stan Musial as the National League’s All-Time Iron Man by playing in his 895th and 896th consecutive games.
1935 – Gabby Harnett went 4-for-4 and drove in the game winners in a 2-1 victory over the Pirates
1952 – Trailing the Reds 8-2 with two outs in the ninth and nobody on bases, the Cubs rallied for seven runs and a 9-8 victory over the Reds at Crosley Field. Ex-Red Johnny Pramesa drove in the winning run.
1951 – Bruce Kimm, born
1909 – Cubs played the Pirates in their last game at Exposition Park and lost to Pittsburgh 8-1. The Pirates began play at Forbes Field the next day in baseball’s first stadium to be built with concrete and steel.
1897 – The Chicago National League Ballclub scored in every inning in route to a 36-7 victory over Louisville at West Side Grounds. The Cubs collected 30 hits, six by Barry McCormick and five by winning pitcher Jimmy Callahan.