Jorge Soler hit one of the Cubs’ five home runs Friday as he wrapped up what was an excellent week back from the DL. Soler started just his second game of the season in right field. Soler went 2-for-4 with a home run, a walk, two runs scored and two RBI in the Cubs’ 11th straight win.
Soler launched his third home run in six games. As Christopher Kamka pointed out, Jorge Soler leads the Cubs with three home runs during the 11-game winning streak. And he’s played in just over half those games on the streak that began on July 31.
Jorge Soler is 9-for-21 in the six games back from the disabled list with a double, a walk, three home runs, five runs scored and seven RBI. Soler has a 1.359 OPS in his last six games (.429/.455/.905). And those that watch the games have noticed he’s making a lot of contact (three strikeouts) with loud outs.
After a slow start to the season in which he hit .193/.294/.316 in his first 21 games, Soler is actually 16-for-43 in his last 15 games with four home runs and a 1.136 OPS (.372/.438/.698).
Jorge Soler has shown when he’s engaged and healthy (and in temperatures above 50 degrees) that he lengthens the Cubs lineup and impacts games. Now it’s up to Joe Maddon and the coaching staff to keep him focused and on the field.
Trevor Cahill – Mike Montgomery
The Cubs have four games in three days with the Brewers starting Tuesday. There is a day-night doubleheader scheduled for Tuesday to makeup the rainout from April 27. Joe Maddon said Friday that Jason Hammel will likely start the night game. The Cubs have not decided yet if Trevor Cahill or Mike Montgomery will start the first of two on Tuesday.
Trevor Cahill reported to Wrigley on Friday after being with the Iowa Cubs since July 18 on a rehab assignment. The Cubs placed Cahill on the DL July 15, retroactive to July 9, with right knee patellar tendinitis. Cahill was not activated Friday and is not expected to officially come off the DL until Tuesday.
According to multiple reports, Maddon was reluctant to talk about Cahill’s role moving forward.
Cahill’s numbers during his time with Iowa were rather mediocre. Cahill made six starts with Iowa and allowed 12 runs, 10 earned, on 25 hits with 12 walks and 25 strikeouts in 19 2/3 innings (4.58 ERA, 1.88 WHIP). Cahill was 1-3 with a 3.07 ERA and 1.39 WHIP in 33 games out of the Cubs’ pen before landing on the DL.
Montgomery made his first appearance since July 31 on Thursday. Montgomery picked up the win against the Cardinals in extras after tossing two scoreless innings. Since the trade with the Mariners that landed him with the Cubs, Montgomery is 1-1 in five games with a 4.76 ERA, 2.29 WHIP and 5.25 FIP. Montgomery has allowed three runs on nine hits with four walks and eight strikeouts in 5 2/3 innings.
Brian Matusz returned to the I-Cubs on Friday. Matusz started the opener and gave up three runs on three hits in two innings in the I-Cubs 8-4 loss in Fresno.
Matusz re-signed with the Cubs on a minor league contract after he was designated for assignment and released. Matusz made 50 pitches, 33 for strikes, on Friday. Matusz walked one and struck out three of the 11 batters he faced.
News and Notes
• According to Comcast SportsNet, Cubs look unstoppable against Cardinals with young talent like Willson Contreras. ESPN Chicago reported that’s not a fire, that’s just how hot the Cubs are right now. Joe Maddon’s lineup changes pay off big for the Cubs according to the Tribune. The Sun-Times reported the Cubs power their way to 11th straight in 13-2 win over the Cardinals.
• The Cubs are rolling like fog as Cardinals fade away in rearview mirror according to the Tribune.
• The Cubs have scored 581 runs and allowed 381 runs … that’s a season-high plus-200 run differential.
• Willson Contreras continues to impress his manager. Joe Maddon said Friday, “He plays with his hair on fire constantly. And I love it. I absolutely love it.”
• Joe Maddon would like to see his team get better with situational hitting according to a report from Carrie Muskat. The Cubs are ninth in the NL with a .248 average with runners in scoring position.
• Bruce Levine reported Aroldis Chapman is finding his fit with the Cubs on the field and in the clubhouse.
• The Cubs are expected to provide an update on Hector Rondon before Saturday’s game. Rondon was scheduled to throw a 15-pitch bullpen Friday. Rondon has been sidelined since Aug. 2 with sore right triceps.
• According to Comcast SportsNet, Joe Maddon admitted Friday he’s “been pretty boring lately and I kind of like that.”
• Comcast SportsNet asked if the Cubs should expect payback from the Cardinals after Matt Holliday’s injury.
• Adam Wainwright’s two-inning outing Friday at Wrigley was his shortest start of the season by three innings according to Derrick Goold. Adam Wainwright lasted only two innings for just the second time in his career. The first, according to Jenifer Langosch, was against the Reds during the 2013 season.
And last, but not least, the players set off the fire alarms Friday afternoon at Wrigley. Well, kinda. The fog machine used in the party room during the post-game celebrations set off fire alarms throughout the underground clubhouse.
This Day in Cubstory
2015 – Cubs won seventh straight game with a 9-2 victory over the Brewers. Anthony Rizzo, Dexter Fowler and Kyle Schwarber homered in the fifth inning. Schwarber added another home run and the Cubs won for the 13th time in 14 games.
2014 – Cubs released Nate Schierholtz
2012 – Cubs signed free agent Seth McClung
2004 – Cubs acquired Jon Connolly and Eric Eckenstahler from the Tigers for Felix Sanchez
1990 – Joe Ortiz, born
1987 – Billy Williams joined Ernie Banks as the only two players to have their uniform number retired by the Cubs … No. 26. Sweet Swingin’ Billy Williams played 16 of the 18 seasons of his Hall of Fame career with the Cubs.
1986 – Cubs traded George Frazier, Ray Fontenot and Julius McDougal to the Twins for Ron Davis and Dewayne Coleman
1985 – Cubs released Larry Bowa
1979 – Lou Brock collected the 3,000th hit of his career off the Cubs Dennis Lamp
1979 – Corey Patterson, born
1977 – Will Ohman, born
1973 – Cubs purchased Rico Carty from the Rangers
1959 – Cubs and Giants set a record, at the time, for the longest nine-inning game played, three hours and 50 minutes. The Cubs beat the Giants 20-9 at Wrigley after pounding out 19 hits that included five home runs. Rookie George Altman had five hits in six at bats, Al Dark hit a grand slam, Dale Lang a pinch-hit homer and Tony Taylor went deep as well.
1922 – Charlie Hollocher hit three triples in the Cubs 16-5 win over the Cardinals at Wrigley Field
1913 – Cubs traded Lew Richie to Kansas City for Hippo Vaughn