Baseball has a way of setting you up like a bowling pin and then knocking you out. Now the Cubs find themselves "trucking" to the west coast on the heels of an awful 2-8 home stand. What made this game a gut punch was that it ruined some 9th inning heroics by Donnie Murphy, who is quickly writing his name into Cubs folk hero lore with a two out, two run homer off Stephen Strasburg. Before the 9th Strasburg basically had his foot on the Cubs neck, allowing only an 8th inning home run by Brian Bogusevic. The Nats meanwhile, had gotten fat off of an average Travis Wood. A first inning home run by Ryan Zimmerman, and two more in the second had the Nats thinking this would be an easy game. But Travis would regroup and shut the Nats down for the next 4 innings before surrendering a solo homer to Steve Lombardozzi. But the Cubs would rally in the 9th, ending with Murphy hitting his 8th home run. The Cubs would battle to the 13th where a bloop double, a sac and a 15 foot ground out RBI would doom the Cubs. What a way to go. Let's take the drive home....
YOU PITCHING TO ME?!! YOU PITCHING TO ME? YOU PITCHING TO ME!!!??!!
Travis was incredibly hittable early in the game and it was a credit to him and the Cubs defense that it was only 3-0 after 2. But all props to Wood for gathering himself and shutting the Nats down. So in the end his 6.2 IP 7H, 4ER, 2BB, 4K performance wasn't too bad. But it's a reminder that he has to be more "on" than other pitchers.Blake Parker, The incredible Pedro Strop, Save Bot 6300, and Carlos Villanueva pitched 5 and a third scoreless innings followed by Bowden who really did nothing wrong but gave up the winning run all the same.
TRYING TO THROW YOUR ARMS AROUND THE WORLD.
Starlin Castro's year has been documented a lot. Probably too much. But what's noticeable is that Castro is trying to make up for it all at once. Which leads to fielding errors. And in today's game, leads to trying to steal too many bases. Castro got thrown out twice today. Now it's great that he got on base twice. But Castro is not a burner. He really can't even be considered fast. He's quick, but he's not the type that should be trying to steal two bases. Certainly applaud his want, but Castro needs to breathe and not try and correct a poor season in one game.
WHY ARE YOU TRYING TO SECOND GUESS ME? I AM TIRED OF YOUR SECOND GUESSING.
So watching Stephen Strasburg was a total delight. 96 on the black all day and a hammer curve.God young killer pitching is cool. I just had to look it up. Jonathan Gray is 3-0 in Modesto with an ERA of 0.95 and 28 K in 19 IP. Probably going to be watching him and Bryant for the next 5-7 years.
So maybe its for the best that the Cubs hit the road. They've played .500 their last two times while totally peeing in the soup at home. But the road aint easy, three with the Padres and then three with the Dodgers with Grienke and Kershaw scheduled to pitch. D'oh..... Anyway, probably good that the Cubs are on late at night too. We'll find out friday night. Until then.