Fresh off a nice win in the series opener against the New York Mets, the Chicago Cubs came into tonights game hoping for some more of the same. Nice at-bats, productive outs, and a stellar defense.
The Mets weren’t going down without a fight, however.
The Mets scored first, off of a solo home run in the 1st, giving them the early lead, 0-1 going to the home half of the 1st.
In the bottom of the 1st, Willson Contreras grounded out, brining in Ben Zobrist to tie the score, 1-1. Ian Happ also grounded out, bringing in Kris Bryant, giving them the lead, 2-1, going to the 2nd.
The Mets got another run in the 2nd, off of a sac bunt, tying the game 2-2, and ending the inning.
The Cubs had the chance to break the tie in the 3rd, but some shoddy base running by Contreras and Happ didn’t allow a run to score. Tied game going to the 4th.
Anthony Rizzo broke the tie in the 4th, with an RBI walk, making it 3-2, and loading the bases with only one out for Contreras . He brought two in with an RBI single, making it 5-2. Happ and Kyle Schwarber both tried and failed to add more runs, but some weird calls from the home plate umpire prevented that from happening. 5-2 going to the 5th.
Pitcher Jon Lester continued to struggle through the early innings, allowing hits, walks, and runs, but once he settled down in the 4th, it was smooth sailing. He went 6 solid innings, allowing just the 2 runs, and is the winning pitcher. He possibly could have gone one more inning, had it not been for the high pitch count.
KB doubled in the 6th, followed by Rizzo being intentionally walked, putting two men on, one out for Contreras, who had already been responsible for three of the five runs scored so far. He walked (and was replaced with a pinch runner, Mike Freeman), loading the bases for Happ. He delivered with an RBI single, making it 6-2. Despite having the bases loaded, the next two men up, Schwarbs and Jason Heyward couldn’t bring any more in. 6-2 going to the 7th.
Brian Duensing and Pedro Strop allowed the Mets to load the bases in the 7th, but thankfully didn’t allow a run to score. Instead, this just served as a reminder about how inconsistent the bullpen is.
Javier Baez led off the bottom of the 7th with a solo home run, his 22nd of the year, and changing the score 7-2. Rene Rivera followed up with a double, bringing up Zo with one on, no out. He walked, bringing up KB who struck out, and Rizzo who flew out, bringing up Albert Almora Jr. with two on, two out. And he delivered. He smashed a three run homer, his 7th of the year, making it 10-2 going to the 8th.
The Mets got some hits off Justin Grimm in the 8th, putting men on the corners with no outs. A wild pitch allowed a run to score, making it 10-3, followed by a two run homer making it a 10-5 ballgame going to the bottom of the 8th.
J-Hey walked in the home half of the 8th, followed by Javy smashing a single, putting two on, one out for Rivera. He delivered with a two run double, making it 12-5, and bringing up Zo, who walked. Two on, one out for KB. He loaded the bases with a single, bringing up Rizzo. He ended up walking, bringing in a run. 13-5, with the bases loaded and one out for Almora. He delivered with a bases clearing triple, making it 16-5 with one on, one out for Jon Jay. He knocked in Almora, making it 17-5 going to the 9th.
Felix Pena came in to close in the 9th, and needed only 9 pitches to seal the deal.
The Cubs remain in first place in the NL Central, and will go for the sweep against the Mets tomorrow, with Jen-Ho Tseng making his MLB debut on the mound.