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Pull out the cannon boys, steal us some wine. Cubs 6 Cardinals 3.

Pull out the cannon boys, steal us some wine. Cubs 6 Cardinals 3.

You knew that as the sunset through the two tire fires in St. Louis, giving the sky that faux purple and green hue, and as equal rivers of cheap, toxic Anheuser beer and homeless person urine flowed through the streets of St. Louis, that tonight's game would be anything but ordinary. And tonight's game did not disappoint. What started out as a pitchers duel, soon became a battle of whose closer can cough up the most of their lung and which manager can lock most of their brain. Fortunately, the Cubs won those battles……err…….lost those battles but won the war with a 6-3 victory over their arch rivals from St. Louis. The Cardinals got on the board 1st when obnoxious load Matt Adams would double to lead off the second inning, advance on a wild pitch and score on a single by Yadier Molina. I know. You're all schocked. Yadier Molina hit an RBI against the Cubs. And tomorrow is Saturday. But Shark would keep the Cards at bay. The Cubs did something they hadn't done all season. They scored a run while Jeff Samardzija was pitching. Happened in the 7th inning. Saw it with my own two eyes. Kolton wong booted an Anthony Rizzo ground ball and he would later score on a Ryan Sweeney single. But WAIT!!!!! It gets better. In the next inning, Justin Ruggiano would single, advance to second on the first of Manager Rick Renteria's 15 bunts, then advance to third on a single by My Colt. A Sac fly from Rizzo would score Ruggiano and give the Cubs the lead.  But Nate Schierholtz would single to supposed gold glove left fielder Matt Holliday, who ran in circles and fell down long enough for Olt to score from first base. 3-1 Cubs. going into the 9th. And here comes Jose Veras…..

And then everything sucked. It went downhill so fast. Walks, hit batsmen, the few strikes he threw were called balls. Needless to say the Cardinals tied it up. It's a small miracle the Cardinals ONLY tied the game. But then both managers got brain lock during extra innings. Ricky Ticky bunted like 7 times and Mike Matheney decided to hit his pitcher Trevor Rosenthal. Anyway, after some horrible bunting, Beff Castillo came up with two runners on and pulverized a Rosenthal fastball 426 feet into a family of Opossums……..at least that's how they smelled. Hector Rondon nailed down the 11th and it was time for Cardinal fans to grab a cousin and go home.  Let's head for the hills before we're up to our armpits in martians.

WE ENLARGED THE SHARK'S BRAINS. AS A SIDE AFFECT, THEY GOT SMARTER.

Can't complain about the way Jeff Samardzija is pitching. 7 innings of one-run ball on six hits while striking out 4. That's a little low for Shark, but so were the 98 pitches he threw which is good. My amateur/unemployed/half-ass scouting thought he didn't have his best stuff. His arm looked a little lower than usual, threw across his body a tad too much and had to many pitches where he wound up on his back foot with his other leg bent in some kind of crane position. But the results were there. I have to admit, I'm a tad thin skinned about trade discussions after every start. We're going to have trade talk about Shark for weeks and weeks. We're gonna be sick of it. For now, can't we just enjoy watching him pitch? Vote for Pedro pitched the 8th. Veras did….THAT….in the 9th….Everyday Grimmy got through the 10th after a shaky start and Rondon was solid closing it out.

I'M NOT THE ONLY ONE…..ACCUSED OF HIT AND RUN.

Interesting moment in the seventh inning. With runners on first and second, Ricky Ticky  called for a hit and run…..with Starlin Castro. Castro whiffed, and Schierholtz did what 80% of runners trying to steal on Yadier Molina did….which was get thrown out. Castro would then pop out and Castillo would ground out. Goodbye Rally. Now to be fair, Ricky Tick had seen his Cubs ground into 3 double plays earlier. But with Castro? And Schierholtz running? Curious.

CAUSE ALL I EVER HAVE….REDEMPTION SONGS

Wellington Castillo came up against fire baller Carlos Martinez in the 7th. Martinez left one on the inside and Castillo whiffed on it. He wound up grounding out. Castillo came up in the 9th against Pat Neeshek. Again Neeshek left one inside. Castillo didn't make him pay. This is where you were hoping Castillo would take the next step. Castillo comes up agains Trevor Rosenthal……his "next step" was 426 feet.

I do love victories over the Cardinals. I'll probably be over confident about the Cubs again and then get sad when the return to the mean. But there's fight in this dog. And they overcame some mistakes and beat a really good team. Can they do it again tomorrow afternoon against Adam Wainwright? The Moose-tache takes the bump for the Cubs. I hope so. But a couple of wins against the red birds would go a long way. to a successful April. Here's hoping. Onwards.

Boxscore

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  • Veras has got to go. We went thru this crap with Marmol, enough of that already. Put the guy in middle relief/mop-up unless/until he gets his act together, and let's move on. Cripes, he wouldn't be the first $4MM middle reliever for the Cubs.

    Most will vote for Strop as the replacement, but I like what I've seen from Rondon.

  • At some point Samardzjia has to be begging to get traded so he can actually get a win. I was shocked that Veras got out of the ninth. I have no clue what the closing situation will be but I don't think the team can handle another blown wave over the next week or so. It is surprising that they have kept the energy up at all at to this point.

  • Well, that was worth staying up for!

  • Good point about the hit & run... I do think Castro is a good candidate at the box, he has a higher contact rate than most in the lineup, but with Schierholtz running at 3B and Molina the catcher... Not a good combo there.

  • i think Veras goes to mop up duty after tonight.. Strop to closer and Rondon to setup?

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    Id flip it.. Strop and Veras both have always had control problems... I would let Rondon handle the duties... RR did give Veras a vote of confidence though after the game

  • Did not see the game ... did the Cubs at least execute the bunts called for by Renteria?

    The games I've seen so far, it seems he'd call for a bunt and the hitter would look like he's never tried to bunt in his life.

    I wonder if the managerial job interview included any discussion of in-game strategy preferences.

  • Everyday Grimmy. I like it. I've been a doubter of his but he has proven me wrong so far. Here's hoping he continues.

  • There are things to love about RR but these bunts have to go. I hate giving up outs. The play where Castro k'd dosen't really upset me because I think its good to try something different once in a while even if its questionable.

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    Always nice to see the Cardinals lose.

  • Good stuff, Felzz! My ulcer was just starting to heal. Now we got Veras.
    As that guy Hawk would say, "Strap 'er down."

  • A win is a win. And a win over the Cards on the road is a sweet, sweet win,....

    But man this team plays kinda ugly for the time being. Don't know if I have ever seen a Cubs team with this many extra innings games this early.

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    Love the pun - "arch rivals".

  • In reply to Matthew Dohrmann:

    Oh shoot. Didn't even notice that one…..ha ha.

  • Rondon looked like a closer should last night. Meanwhile, push Jose Verass Marmohole down a flight of stairs or something. Invent some excuse to put him on the DL, but dont let him walk the bases full again.

  • yes i think Veras needs a few weeks off from closer role (maybe never to return to it; Vizcaino is on his way) until he can get some confidence back and actually throw some strikes. Lets see what Rondon, Grimm & Strop are capable of.

    Kevin Gregg anyone?

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    Agreed, thought the overall 'pen would be better.

  • Yeah. Everyone is down on Veras. Rightfully so as he simply hasn't been very good.

    But even with him, I think we have to slow our vitriol roll. He's basically just off to a lousy, lousy start. But he has a track record of at least being good. And while everything in my inner ear is screaming "CUT HIM!!!!!!!!" it simply prudent to give him some more time. Not as closer. But in a blowout situation….. A 7th inning perhaps. Maybe just one batter. Every closer in existence has had a stretch like Veras is having now.

    Except for Rivera, and he's retired.

  • What a game! Castillo! Yes sir!

    I can't remember the last time I was this happy after a Cubs win. I'm thinking maybe this game says something more than any ordinary win. I am so into this.

    BTW, while Veras is an incorrigible arsonist, he did strike out Carpenter on a real nice pitch. I couldn't believe that %€%#*&$! ump didn't have the balls to ring him up. What a dick.

  • Prior to the season I wrote that I was concerned with the lack of MLB experience of the coaching staff. So far, the new hitting coaches and the base coaches seem to be doing alright, but the manager is going through on-the-job training, and he is messing up like all new employees do until they get some experience. The players seem engaged, but they seemed just as engaged at the start of the Sveum regime. Blown leads late, constant lineup juggling, and head-scratcher in-game decisions can't go on for long, especially with all the trade speculation hanging over the team.

    Renteria reminds me a little of Don Zimmer. Everybody plays, lots of hunches, dugout cheerleader style, good rapport with young and old players. Unfortunately, history has shown that the planners always win out over the pragmatists. So, I hope Renteria will be able to put his stamp on this team soon, or his stint in Chicago will be short-lived.

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    In reply to Cleme:

    Zimmer tried a hit-and-run with the bases loaded once against the Mets.

  • In reply to Ray:

    I think he also tried a triple steal --- and was successful. I believe it was Shawon Dunston who stole home.

  • Sign me up with those who still believe in bunting. I believe that dunce LaRussa did it with frequency and was considered a genius. In the last few years the Cubs have hit into far too many double plays. I'm also good with the hit-and-run call with Castro at the plate. When you have trouble scoring runs, you need to try stuff. I hope Renteria keeps it up.

  • In reply to JayPea:

    Me too.

  • The Cubs finally get rid of Marmol only to go out and sign his ugly stepbrother.

    Then there's Wesley Wright. Can you expect a guy who is named after two people from the Princess Bride not named Andre or Giant to be effective in the Bigs?

    Of course not. Mop up duty for them until a couple of AAA arms take their spots.

  • Two plays that were unmentioned. The pop-up bunt on the safety squeeze and the dropped pop-up that we got an out on anyway. Cubs baseball.

  • Great win and even a better article by Felzz... I can't stop laughing. A break through performance against Wainwright would be huge for a young team, let's make it happen Cubbies.

  • Felz, I truly hope that your brother lets you write some of the St. Louis insults if/when the Hawks meet up with the Blues. Priceless stuff. Always makes my day.

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