After a day off Wednesday, the Cubs took on the Seattle Mariners at Sloan Park on Thursday. Mike Montgomery and Brett Anderson, co-fifth starters for the Cubs, both saw action in the game.
Anthony Rizzo appeared fully healed from his back issue earlier in the spring, blasting a homer deep to right to give the Cubs an early 1-0 lead.
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Montgomery gave up a run in two innings pitched to start the game and Anderson allowed two runs of his own to give the M’s a 3-1 edge. Wade Davis looked much sharper in his second outing despite giving up a sun-aided RBI double.
Willson Contreras and Taylor Davis doubled to help the Cubs cut the Mariners’ lead to 4-3 in the 5th. Davis would later single Contreras home in the 7th to tie the score at 4-4.
Koji Uehara threw a scoreless 6th, which meant three of the last four pitchers on the mound when the World Series ended saw action for the Cubs Thursday. Now if Madison Bumgarner would just come to Chicago they could have all four.
In that 6th inning, Kyle Schwarber made a great catch at or near the wall. As of this writing, no video of the catch has appeared. Len Kasper indicated it could have been a home run robbing catch. Now it may just fade into legend a la the Trojan War.
Eloy Jimenez doubled and would eventually score on a Jacob Hanneman single to put the Cubs up 5-4 in the 8th. Brian Duensing then imploded in the 9th as the Mariners plated 4 runs. Duensing had to leave after taking a comebacker off his leg.
The Cubs scored a run in the 9th on a Munenori Kawasaki single, but the M’s held on, 8-6.
Stats That Matter
- Anthony Rizzo was 2-for-3 with a double in addition to his home run. Good to see him back hitting long balls.
- Justin Grimm looked very sharp again, striking out 2 in a 1-2-3 inning. It’s been a very encouraging start for the Reaper this spring.
- Taylor Davis, now without the flowing locks, was 2-for-4 with 2 RBI. If he continues to hit like this he may be the Cubs backup catcher in a year or two.
Anthony Rizzo is back and some of the key bullpen pieces looked good Thursday.
The Cubs go to Peoria to play the Mariners again on Friday. Kyle Hendricks gets his second outing of the spring at 2:05 CST.