Ivy’s Cubs recap (@Reds & Marlins)

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The Cubs finished this road trip with a 4-6 record. After being swept out of Milwaukee they traveled to Cincinnati and then Miami. There are some things the Cubs need to keep working on but this road trip did show some positives.

 

4/22- @Reds L 4-5

4/23- @Reds W 4-2

4/24- @Reds L 0-1

 

Going into the Reds series, the Cubs starting pitchers had been the most consistent aspect of the team, they started the series with a combined 3.10 ERA and Travis Wood had the 10th quality start by a Cubs pitcher. Every loss sucks but it’s even worse when everything is going right and you lose in extras. Cesar Izturis hit a single with two outs in the 13th which gave the Reds a 5-4 win over the Cubs, who were leading them by two runs after a two-run homer by Luis Valbuena in the top of the inning. The Cubs had many opportunities. They stranded 12 runners, including two in the 10th. and they left the bases loaded in the 11th.

In the second game, the Cubs had a 2-1 lead going into the ninth, but the Reds forced the game into extra innings for the second straight night. Carlos Villanueva almost went the distance. He pitched a great game, which the Cubs needed after going 13 innings the night before. He pitched into the ninth but was pulled when he walked Shin-Soo Choo to start the ninth inning. His wins column doesn’t have anything to show but that was Villanueva’s fourth quality start. Carlos Marmol entered to face Joey Votto, who was 1-for-15 in his career against Marmol but Votto lined an RBI single past Darwin Barney to tie the game.  However, Barney launched a solo homer and Dave Sappelt hit an RBI single in the 10th. to help the Cubs get the W.

Mat Latos cruised and had a good outing to give the Reds the win. He retired the first 10 batters until Julio Borbon got the first Cubs hit when he doubled in the fourth inning. Jeff Samardzija posted the Cubs’ 12th quality start and lowered his ERA to a 2.97 but he did give up a solo home run to Todd Frazier, which was enough to give the Reds the victory.

The good thing about this series is that all the games were close, they were all decided by one run. That is thanks to the great starting pitching the Cubs have had. However their struggles still seem to be hitting with runners in scoring position, they went 0-for-6 to close out this series, which had them ranking last in the Majors.

 

4/25- @Marlins W 4-3

4/26- @Marlins W 4-2

4/27- @Marlins W 3-2

4/28- @Marlins L 4-6

 

This was a great series for the Cubs, they had just enough offense to get the first three wins, the starting pitching continued to impress and the bullpen didn’t have many issues, even Kevin Gregg closed back to back games.

Luis Valbuena provided the spark for the first game when he hit the first pitch form Marlins closer Steve Cishek with two outs in the top of the ninth to break the tie. Valbuena has hit four home runs in 18 games this season, he hit that same amount in 90 games last year. Edwin Jackson had a solid start, pitching six innings and allowing three runs.

Scott Feldman was able to get his first win of the season in Game Two thanks to Anthony Rizzo. Rizzo had his second career multi-homer game, he homered twice, a two-run homer in the first inning and then a two-run homer in the third.  Scott Feldman went 6 2/3 innings for the Cubs, giving up two runs on seven hits to earn his first win of the season. Marlins starting pitcher Wade LeBlanc went six-plus innings, giving up eight hits and four runs while striking out two.

Travis Wood earned the win in Game Three. He pitched six innings, giving up two runs on three hits with five strikeouts. David DeJesus snapped a late tie with an RBI single and for the first time this season the Cubs were able to win three games in a row.

After hitting his first homer of the season on Saturday, Giancarlo Stanton followed that by hitting two in the final game of the series and helping the Marlins avoid the sweep. Carlos Villanueva pitched well enough and had only two bad innings, he gave up a two-run home run to Stanton in the opening inning and then in the sixth inning once again when Stanton gave Miami the lead. Giancarlo was batting .200 with only three RBIs coming into this series but was 3-for-3 with four RBIs and scored three runs to help the Marlins get the W.

 

The Cubs start a 10-game home stand tonight (in progress). They play four against the San Diego Padres, three against the Reds, a quick makeup game vs. the Rangers and finally they close it out with two against the Cardinals. Here are the upcoming games:

 

San Diego Padres vs. Chicago Cubs

Monday, April 29, 7:05 p.m.

Clayton Richard, LHP (0-2, 7.94 ERA) vs. Jeff Samardzija, RHP (1-4, 3.03 ERA)

 

San Diego Padres vs. Chicago Cubs

Tuesday, April 30, 7:05 p.m.

Edinson Volquez, RHP (1-3, 6.39 ERA) vs. Edwin Jackson, RHP (0-3, 4.76 ERA)

 

San Diego Padres vs. Chicago Cubs

Wednesday, May 1, 7:05 p.m.

Andrew Cashner, RHP (1-1, 3.26 ERA) vs. Scott Feldman, RHP (1-3, 3.92 ERA)

 

San Diego Padres vs. Chicago Cubs

Thursday, May 2, 1:20 p.m.

Eric Stults, LHP (2-2, 5.67 ERA) vs. Travis Wood, LHP (2-1, 2.25 ERA)

 

Thanks for reading and as always, Go Cubs!

 

-Ivy

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