Game One Hundred – Cubs 8, White Sox 1
WP – Jason Hammel (10-5) LP – Anthony Ranaudo (1-1) Save – None
Kris Bryant tied the game at one in the sixth with a solo home run. Javier Baez gave the Cubs the lead with a two-run blast in the seventh. Addison Russell crushed the first Grand Slam of his career in the eighth and the Cubs played longball late and beat the Sox.
The Cubs offense woke up in the sixth inning after being no-hit by Anthony Ranaudo through five innings. The Cubs made Ranaudo look really good in his Sox debut. Ranaudo issued three walks but did not give up a hit until Kris Bryant (1-for-3 with a home run, a HBP and two runs scored) smacked his 26th dinger of the season with one out in the sixth.
Jason Hammel had an excellent outing and made only one mistake in seven sensational innings. Hammel served up a solo homer to Anthony Ranaudo in the fifth. Ranaudo’s first career hit landed in the bleachers in right center. And with the Cubs offense struggling it looked like Ranaudo’s opposite field homer was going to hold up. Bryant’s homer loosened up his teammates and it was Javy Time in the seventh.
Jason Heyward (1-for-3 with a walk and a run scored) actually worked a two-out walk in the seventh that set up Baez’s game-winning homer. Heyward walked with two outs in the seventh and did not try to steal second. Heyward did not risk taking the bat out of Baez’s hand with game tied at one.
Javier Baez (1-for-4 with a home run and two RBI) worked a full count before unloading on a hanging curveball. Baez’s booming homer to the bleachers in left center gave the Cubs a 3-1 lead.
Hector Rondon was incredibly sharp in the eighth with the Cubs leading by two runs. Rondon pitched a 1-2-3 eighth inning and retired Adam Eaton, Tim Anderson and Melky Cabrera on seven pitches, six for strikes. Rondon did his new job and set it up for Aroldis Chapman.
The Cubs went to work against Sox rookie right-hander Carson Fulmer in the eighth. Fulmer hit Kris Bryant. Anthony Rizzo (1-for-3 with a walk and a run scored) singled to left center on a 2-2 pitch. With runners on the corners and no outs, Ben Zobrist (1-for-4 with a double, a run scored and a RBI) doubled to left center. Bryant scored easily, 4-1 Cubs. Rizzo stopped at third with no outs. Miguel Montero (0-for-2 with two walks and a run scored) walked and loaded the bases.
Robin Ventura went to his pen and replaced Fulmer with former Cubs’ right-hander Jacob Turner.
Addison Russell (1-for-4 with a home run and four RBI) launched a 1-0 pitch from Turner into the bleachers in left center. And Russell’s first slam set a new career high with four RBI and gave the Cubs an 8-1 lead.
Joe Maddon had Aroldis Chapman pitch the ninth in a non-save situation. Chapman lit up the radar gun with triple-digit fastballs and he mowed down the Sox in order to close out the game.
Jason Hammel completed seven innings and outside of the one mistake, Hammel kept the Sox off balance for throughout his outing. Hammel allowed just four other hits (five total) and worked extremely well with Miguel Montero. Hammel kept the ball down, had good command and pounded the strike zone.
Hammel walked two and struck out seven. Hammel made 103 pitches, 69 for strikes. Hammel gave the ball to Hector Rondon just the way Maddon drew it up.
Wednesday was quite the ride for the Cubs as Maddon’s team went from being no-hit to posting a blowout win in three innings.
With Wednesday’s win, the Cubs improved to 60-40 on the season.
John Lackey takes on Chris Sale in the finale of the Crosstown Cup Series on Thursday (7:05pm CDT) under the lights at Wrigley.