Jeff Samardzija threw the Cubs first complete game of the season and was crazy sexy cool-like dominant as the Cubs defeated the Pittsburgh Pirates 4-3 at PNC Park. A rocky 1st inning saw the Pirates get out to a quick 2-0 lead. But a home run by Alfonso Soriano quickly cut the lead to 2-1. And thanks to Dale Sveum’s odd managerial decisions, the Cubs found themselves with Tony Campana and David Dejesus getting on base in succession in multiple innings. This led to garbage runs on a double play and a sacrifice by Luis Valbuena. Shark would mow the Pirates down until the 7th when a Starlin Castro Rock star move at short would allow Rod Barajas to get to second base. He would score on the one legitimate Samardzija mistake. But Dale not only let Samardzija hit in the 8th, he allowed him to finish the game. David Dejesus would drive in a hard chugging but slow moving Wellington Castillo for the winning run in the 8th. Hot damn 2 in a row. Let’s take the blue pill and see how far the rabbit hole goes…
WE’RE GOING TO NEED A BIGGER BOAT.
Shark emptied the tank, so we’re going to empty our clip of compliments on him, seeing as how it’s his last start. How awesome was Jeff Samardzija? Somewhere between really awesome and really effin awesome, that’s how awesome. 9 innings, 3 runs (2 earned) on 4 hits, striking out 9 while walking one. (That’s Samardzija’s 12th game where he’s allowed 1 walk or fewer. Let that marinate for a while.) The first inning found him a little amped, and with home plate umpire Scott Barry using an obscure strike zone, things could have gotten ugly. But, like he’s done so many times before, Sammy settled down, and got in a groove. He was even the one calming Castro down after his error. Jeff Samardzija has been the highlight of the Cubs season. When you consider where, he came from, what was expected of him, how he adjusted, excelled, and for what he can become, His growth in 2012 absolutely dwarfs anyone else on the team. It’s truly exciting to think what he can become.
HEARD THE DIESEL DRUMMIN, ALL DOWN THE LINEUP.
Dale Sveum decided to go quirky with his lineup, batting Jeff Samrdzija 8th and letting Tony Campana bat 9th, thus acting like a second leadoff man. Now I have to be inherently against a move like this as it is a move popularized by Asshat Emeritus Tony LaRussa. I understand that this lineup kind of fell bass ackwards into success. It allowed Campana to bat leadoff twice, and Campana would score tying and go ahead runs. But Samardzija came up with runners on base 3 different times. And two of those at bats wound up with the inning over and runners stranded. But results are results, which means we might see this lineup some more. Lord help us.
HE DOESN’T KNOW HE’S LITTLE. HE THINKS HE’S THE BIGGEST HORSE OUT THERE.
Tony Campana drew a walk. Tony Campana got on by singling to center. Tony got on by going the other way with a ground rule double. And he reigned havoc on the Pirates because of it. I don’t have Campana penciled in anywhere on future Cub lineups. But if he takes the underdog approach to hitting, I.E. doing whatever it takes to get on base, then he becomes a damn fun player to watch.
So, two in a row. Honestly didn’t think it would happen. But it was a true kick watching Shark end his year on a high note like that. Chris Rusin tries to rebound from his nightmarish performance against the Nationals as the Cubs go for the…hehe… sweep tomorrow. The hopefully Arguello shuts me down for the year so I don’t have to watch Cubs-Astros. I doubt that happens.
Bears tomorrow, so expect a wrap late. Enjoy your evening.