It was utter and complete domination by the Chicago Cubs (45-20) over the Pittsburgh Pirates (33-34). Jake Arrieta (11-1, 1.74 ERA) spun a masterpiece today as he, once again, baffled Pirates hitters, striking out 11 and leading the Cubs to a 6-0 win (Box Score).
For his part, Jake did everything he needed right when it counted, and mostly via the strikeout. In the third inning, after back-to-back singles to open the inning, Jake struck out three straight batters to end the threat. Again, in the sixth inning with one out, Arrieta walked the bases loaded, only to strike out the next two batters.
Jake has a knack of making the Pirates look silly, even when things go their way – which is rare when he’s on the hill.
Offensively, the Cubs had plenty of scoring chances, leaving 14 men on base while scoring six runs.
Matt Szczur didn’t wait long to get things started either. He piped the first pitch he saw of the game straight into left field bleachers, scoring Dexter Folwer, who singled to open things up.
The Cubs went through a stretch where they left nine men on base from the first through the fifth innings. They were finally able to break through in the sixth inning, starting with a Chris Coghlan lead-off double. Coghlan was pinch-hitting for Jake Arrieta, who had thrown 112 pitches in the game.
With two outs, Ben Zobrist singled in Coghlan to make the score 3-0, good guys. An RBI double by Albert Almora, who continues to impress in his first big-league call-up, scored Ben Zobrist, and Anthony Rizzo scored on a bases loaded walk to Addison Russell. That put the Cubs up 5-0, on their way to their 6th win in seven tries against the Bucs.
Stats that mattered
- Jake being Jake – 6IP, 2H, 0R, 3BB, 11Ks
- Albert Almora is TEARING IT UP – 3-for-4, 2RBIs, 1BB
- Matt Szczur continues hitting well – 2-for-5, 2RBIs, 1R
- Chris Coghlan came in to pinch hit and got the Cubs 6th inning rally started. Great situational hitting from Mr. Reliable.
- Anthony Rizzo registered only one official at-bat, getting hit by a pitch twice and walked twice.
The Cubs own the Pirates this year. They’ve won 6-of-7 games so far against them, outscoring them 44-13. These teams feel like they’re heading in opposite directions and the Pirates are now 13 games back from the Cubs, who are 25 games over .500. Feels pretty good, doesn’t it?
The Cubs look to continue their mastery of the Pirates as Jon Lester takes the hill. Game time is 7:15 PM CDT on FOX.