The first play of the game last night between the Cubs and the A's featured 290 lb. Bartolo Colon huffing it from the pitcher's mound to first base to cover the throw. And if you were an A's fan, that's about as entertaining as it got. Matt Garza basically head locked and noogied the A's all night while saying "Why you hitting yourself?".The Cubs pushed across enough runs make Garza's effort stand. An Alfonso Soriano single scored a hustling Starlin Castro to give the Cubs an early lead. The Cubs would get all the scoring they would need when Luis Valbuena's 357 foot blast caromed off of Josh Reddick's glove and over the right field fence. A Brandon Moss home run was all the A's got for supper and the Cubs would get an insurance run in the 8th on back to back doubles by Dioner Navarro and Brian Bogusevic. Bogusevic's double was one of three balls that went to the left field wall because outfielder Yoenis Cespedis decided to chase his tail before fielding the ball. Let's order sushi and not pay...
SO LONG, FAREWELL, BABY BYE BYE...
Well if that is Garza's last start as a Chicago Cub, he certainly closed the show with his best. 1 run on 4 hits was all Garza gave up to the first place A's. He did walk 3 while striking out 5. Perhaps signing Garza to an 8 year extension and spreading trade rumors before each and every start during that time is the way to go because the 25-cent psychologist saw a man who blocked everything out and was more focused than he's ever been. No histrionics, no flakiness, no screaming into the glove. Just well placed fast balls and a biting curve. While I doubt Garza's value went up, one start is simply one start, Theo & Co. have every right to ask for what THEY want and make the other team concede. Kevin Gregg also did himself well shutting down the A's for the save.
IF THIS IS COFFEE PLEASE BRING ME SOME TEA. BUT IF THIS IS TEA, THEN BRING ME SOME COFFEE.
I know the Cubs won, and I should just shut up. And 9 hits off a pitcher who was on an 8-0 run is an antihistamine performance. But 9 men LOB is still 9 LOB. And the game could have been easier.
WELCOME TO THE PARTY PAL.
Could we finally be seeing the start of the Cubbie way and the "new hitting philosophy" at work. The top 3 batters in the lineup saw over 20 pitches each. (Led by Starlin Castro and his 25. Something that has steadily gone up all year. Very good sign.) and here's the kicker: Not a single strikeout. Granted, Bartolo Colon makes climbing the pitcher's mound look like hard work. But the truth was that was not an easy night for #40. He really had to battle Cub hitters. Very encouraging.
So once again, the Cubs manage to shake off a gut punch win with a solid outing of their own. And, as usual, good starting pitching was the key. 8 years ago, when Carlos Zambrano would have a performance like this, the cries were "Sign him! Sign him." Now the screams are "Trade him!. Trade him." Different times, different teams to say the least, but to me, the message is simple....stop screaming. When you do well, good things usually follow. Travis Wood takes the bump to go for the series win against Dan Straily. Three road series wins on a west coast trip? Yes please. Happy 4th everybody!