You guys remember when we were looking at some Cubs player stats the other day, and Jake Arrieta was lighting up the charts with his great pitching despite starting the year a bit late due to lingering arm issues? Well, it just so happens that on Monday night in Boston, his numbers actually got better.
— MLB Fan Cave (@MLBFanCave) July 1, 2014
That’s 7.2 innings of one-hit, shutout ball, with just one walk and ten strikeouts. Game score of 86 (pretty damned good) against a lineup with still-dangerous hitters like Dustin Pedroia, David Ortiz and Mike Napoli. Jake took a perfect game into the fifth inning before walking Napoli, and got all the way into the eighth inning before Stephen Drew did this:
I’m glad it was a clean single. It would have been annoying if it was a BABIP bloop or an excuse-me-bunt single, but at least the Red Sox’s new $10MM man got it done. In all, because Jake was so dominant and relatively efficient, this game in Boston actually finished under three hours officially, a rare feat for an American League East team. Big kudos to the Boston fans (with a large Cubs contingent, but still) for giving Jake a big round of applause as he exited.
If you recall, Arrieta was acquired last July 2 (almost a year to this day) along with Pedro Strop from the Baltimore Orioles in exchange for Scott Feldman and Steve Clevenger. Apparently the O’s also sent some cash along, which is an added bonus. Strop got the last out in the eighth inning after Arrieta’s exit, and Hector Rondon nailed down the save. Considering the close score (thanks to a Nate Schierholtz long ball), this was an even more impressive outing by Arrieta. It’s almost as if the Cubs front office knew what they were doing when they got this guy.
(dying laughing) Strop in to hold Arrieta’s one-hitter. Straight up trolling Baltimore — Eric Michel (@ericmichel) July 1, 2014
We as Cubs fans will have to face the reality that there will be yet another sell-off in the month of July. But based on what the Cubs turned a few months of Scott Feldman into, I think the franchise will be in good hands long term.
And I guess just for kicks, you should caption this picture and ask yourself what Rick Renteria is doing with his hand there.
Here are the highlights of Arrieta’s start:
Let’s all sleep well. Such a fun day to be a Cubs fan.