It seemed like an auspicious start when Ian Happ led off the bottom of the 1st inning with a solo bomb, but the good luck ended there. The Cardinals and Adam Wainwright bested the Cubs 4-2 in the first of a twin bill at Wrigley Field, quickly regaining a lead and maintaining it in the seven-inning affair.
The irony is that coming into the day, everyone was worried about Happ’s eyesight after he took a foul ball off his face in Thursday’s loss. Seems he was the only Cub who could actually see the pitches coming his way in this one.
While Wainwright wasn’t perfect, the Cubs were unable to capitalize on their numerous chances. Happ provided the only offense with that early solo shot and then another one in the bottom of the 5th.
The Cardinals were gifted some runs by starter Adbert Alzolay courtesy of walks and some shoddy defense in the 3rd inning and then some more hits in the 4th off Ryan Tepera to make the game 4-1. Despite chances later in the game, the Cubs could only manage Happ’s big hits. (Box score)
Why the Cubs Lost
They continue to have trouble hitting with the bases loaded and couldn’t knock Wainwright out of the game.
With the bases loaded and no outs in the 2nd inning, the Cubs let him Wainwright off the hook and got nothing.
Stats That Matter
- Happ had another huge game with two home runs to give him 12 on the season, but also left four runners on in clutch spots.
- Anthony Rizzo, Kris Bryant, Javier Báez, Kyle Schwarber, and Willson Contreras were a combined 2-for-15 in this one. Not gonna get it done.
- The Cubs left 19 runners on base and were 1-for-7 with RISP.
Between some bad luck hitting it right at defenders, way too many left on base, and some questionable defense when Alzolay needed it, the Cubs probably didn’t deserve to win this one. Oh yeah, did I mention they still can’t hit with the bases loaded? The good news is they don’t have to marinate on the loss and can come out and win the second game.
Stick around, because you won’t have to wait long for the next game. Colin Rea for the Cubs and TBD for the Cards will open a game that can be seen on Marquee or heard on 670 The Score.