Barney's first home run
Gave Cubs the lead in the first
Then came the second
Castro's three errors
Still one less in an inning
Than Bob Brenly had
The Cubs got off to a good start. Barney, who hit 10 homers over four Minor League seasons, connected in the first. Fukudome singled to lead off, and Barney then launched an 0-2 pitch from Esmil Rogers (3-1) into the basket rimming the left-field bleachers. The Cubs loaded the bases, and Alfonso Soriano added a sacrifice fly to make it 3-0.
After Darwin Barney's two-run homer in the first helped Garza out a three-run lead, Castro's three errors in the second gave it right back. He failed to field one grounder, couldn't get a grip on another and threw a potential double-play ball into right field for the third error.
Castro said the ball was wet and "it's one of those things."
"I try my best and I know we lost the game, but things happen," he said. "Tomorrow is another day."
Rockies shortstop Troy Tulowitzki empathized with the kid.
"That's could've been me," he said. "It was a tough place to field."
First came a routine grounder by Bob Horner, and Brenly booted it badly. ``No problem there,'' he said. ``I expect to make one error a day down there.''
The Braves wound up loading the bases, and Glenn Hubbard hit a little nubber down the third-base line. This time, Brenly not only dropped the ball, enabling a run to score, he made a hurried, off-balance throw at least six feet wide of home plate. With the runners taking second and third, that meant two errors on a single play, and three for the inning.
``At that point I was thinking, `Please, don't hit me anymore,' Brenly said at the time. ``I would have hid under the bag if I could.''
That would have been a safe place to watch the next development, a screaming line drive toward Brenly off the bat of pitcher Charlie Puleo, scoring two more runs for 4-0. This one was ruled a single, too hot to handle, but Brenly was drifting into the Twilight Zone now, getting the chills as he realized that every single play was coming his way.
Fully shell-shocked, Brenly made his fourth error on a grounder hit directly at him by Dale Murphy. There was no further damage on the scoreboard, but when the team returned to the dugout, Brenly was a changed man.
The Cubs failed to climb back to .500, falling 2 games below mediocrity with their second straight loss and ending their record setting average start at 10 visits to even.
Hopefully they'll start the climb back on Tuesday when James Russell starts against Jorge De La Rosa.
Alfonso Soriano, Bob Brenly, Cubs, Darwin Barney, Esmil Rogers, Haiku, Kosuke Fukudome, Matt Garza, Rockies, Starlin Castro, Troy Tulowitzki