Saturday, September 19, 2015

Cubs win 5-4 over Cardinals for 5th consecutive win as rivalry continues

Wow, just wow.  The Cubs beat the Cardinals 5-4 Saturday at Wrigley Field for their fifth consecutive win.  The crowd at the Friendly Confines was definitely charged up and into the game as there was plenty to cheer about.

Jorge Soler and Kris Bryant hit back-to-back homers to lead off the fifth inning.  The homer into the last row of the left field bleachers was Bryant's 25th home run of the season, which ties Billy Williams'  rookie record for home runs.  Williams set the record in 1961.

Fernando Rodney (not pictured) pours sunflower seeds onto Kris Bryant after he hit a home run against the St. Louis Cardinals during the fifth inning at Wrigley Field on Sept. 19, 2015, in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Jon Durr/Getty Images)

The Cubs held a lead during the entire game, beginning in the bottom of the first inning.  Trevor Cahill earned the win and Michael Wacha gets the loss.  

Addison Russell made an impressive diving catch and then flipped it to Javier Baez at second base to get the final out of the game.

Addison Russell's diving catch to secure the Cubs win on Saturday over the Cardinals

The Cubs now trail the Pirates for 2nd place in the NL Central by a half game (The Pirates will play the Dodgers at 8:10pm CT).  I'm sure I won't be the only one cheering on the Dodgers tonight!  The Cubs are now 5 games behind the Cardinals for first place in the NL Central. 

The Cubs magic number is now 6!  Go Cubs Go! #wearegood

The Cubs and Cardinals will play their final matchup of the regular season on Sunday at 1:20pm CT.  Jon Lester (10-10, 3.38) will face Carlos Martinez (13-7, 3.02). 

Friday, September 18, 2015

Starlin Castro's career-tying 6 RBI game leads Cubs to big win over Cardinals; Kris Bryant, Lyft driver

Starlin Castro is the Cubs MVP today after hitting two homers and a single totaling 6 RBI in the series opener against the Cardinals.  Did you know that the Cubs are 11-0 this season whenever Castro has at least three hits?  Castro's 6 RBI today matches his Major League debut game on May 7, 2010, against the Reds, where he also had 6 RBI.

Austin Jackson congratulates Starlin Castro after one of his homers during Friday's game against the Cardinals

The Cubs now have a four-game win streak after beating the NL Central division leading Cardinals 8-3.  What an intense game it was, as you could feel the rivalry between the two teams even more than usual.

Cubs starting pitcher Dan Haren accidentally hit pinch-hitter Matt Holliday in the helmet in the fifth inning.  At this point, both teams were given a warning.  However, Cardinals reliever Matt Belisle still retaliated by hitting Anthony Rizzo in his back leg in the seventh inning and was immediately ejected from the game, along with manager Mike Matheny.  It was the 29th time Rizzo has been hit by a pitch this season, which leads the Major Leagues and was also the second time he was hit by a pitch in this game.

Joe Maddon was less than pleased with the Cardinals way of doing things and said, "I'm really disappointed in what the Cardinals did right there.  We did not hit their guy on purpose.  That was an absolute mistake.  To become this vigilante group that wants to get their own pound of flesh, that's absolutely insane, ridiculous and wrong."  I don't blame Maddon for being mad...really mad.

Anthony Rizzo argues with home plate umpire Dan Bellino after being hit by a pitch for the second time in Friday's win over the Cardinals. AP Photo/Paul Beaty

"I never read this book the Cardinals wrote way back in the day regarding how to play baseball," Maddon said, fuming.  "You can take that book and read it yourself because I don't give a crap about that book.  I want everyone there to understand we don't start stuff but we stop stuff." 

The Cubs are now 86-61 (.585) and trail the Cardinals by 6 games in the NL Central and are just 1.5 games behind the Pirates, who will play the Dodgers in Los Angeles tonight at 9:10pm CT.   The Cubs currently hold the second NL Wild Card spot and have a 8.5 game lead over the Giants for the Wild Card.

In other Cubs news, have you seen this video by the ride sharing service Lyft featuring Cubs third baseman Kris Bryant, who went undercover as a driver?  Here's a link to the video, which is pretty entertaining.

Kris Bryant goes undercover as a Lyft driver to unsuspecting Chicagoans

The Cubs and Cardinals will play the second game of the three-game series at 12:05pm CT tomorrow at Wrigley Field.  Joe Maddon plans to use a relief pitcher to start tomorrow's game, which could be either Trevor Cahill, Carl Edwards Jr., or Travis Wood.  Michael Wacha will make the start for the Cardinals.

What an exciting season this has turned out to be.  It's far from over yet, so let's keep cheering on our Cubbies because #wearegood!