The Cubs did not pull through to win the division this year. In yet another frustrating loss to the Brewers, they managed only three hits and one run and will play the wild card game tomorrow versus either the Dodgers or Rockies.
José Quintana faced off against Lorenzo Cain in the leadoff spot, who grounded out to Javier Báez at shortstop. Christian Yelich followed with a single to short, and while Báez was able to recover the ball, the throw did not get to first in time. Regardless, the Cubs escaped with no damage done in the top of the first after Ryan Braun grounded into a 6-4-3 double play.
The Brewers started Jhoulys Chacín on the mound. Daniel Murphy led off and entered the game with a 10 game hit streak. This time, he flew out to center. Ben Zobrist ripped one to right that was, unfortunately, caught by Yelich for the second out. Báez struck out swinging to end the inning.
The Brewers got on the board first in the third inning after Yelich singled with two outs to score Orland Arcía to put them ahead 1-0. Yelich stole second with Braun batting, and Braun followed with a swinging strikeout.
Anthony Rizzo responded for the Cubs in the fifth with a solo home run to tie it at 1-1. The homer was followed by a flyout to right rom Jason Heyward, a strikeout from Kyle Schwarber, and a flyoung to center from Bryant.
Quintana was pulled in the sixth after giving up a single to Yelich and was replaced by Jesse Chavez. Q went five innings with six hits, one earned run, four strikeouts, and no walks. Ian Happ also entered the game in center field, and Zobrist moved from right field to left and Heyward from center to right. Chavez got the final two outs of the inning on a strikeout from Braun and a double play from Jesús Aguilar.
Happ led off the Cubs half of the sixth with a walk. Chacín was pulled and replaced on the mound by Xavier Cedeño after inducing a 1-4-3 double play from Willson Contreras. Cedeño faced Murphy, who got on base with a two-out single. Zobrist then walked on four straight balls and Cedeño was out of the game. Báez was first at bat against new Brewers reliever Joakim Soria and he struck out swinging.
Corey Knebel pitched for the Brewers in the seventh and retired Rizzo on a groundout to second and a swinging strikeout from Bryant. Tommy La Stella pinch hit in the pitcher’s spot and grounded out for the third out.
Justin Wilson replaced Chavez in the eighth inning. He gave up a leadoff single to Arcía, followed by a double from pinch-hitter Domingo Santana, and was then pulled in favor of Steve Cishek. Cishek faced Cain and gave up a single, scoring Arcía and putting the Brewers ahead 2-1. Randy Rosario became the third pitcher of the inning and faced Yelich with no outs and struck him out swinging. The bullpen carousel continued with Brandon Kintzler now on the mound. Braun singled and scored Santana but was then caught trying to steal second for the second out. The inning finally ended with a flyout from Aguilar and the Brewers ahead by 3-1.
Heyward led off against Josh Hader in the eighth and struck out swinging. Albert Almora, Jr pinch hit and lined out to second base. Contreras struck out for the third out.
Jaime García pitched for the Cubs in the ninth and faced Jonathan Schoop to start the inning, who grounded out to third. Mike Moustakas got on base with a single that slipped past Murphy. Erik Kratz popped out to first for out number two, and the final out came on a dribbler near the mound that Contreras threw to first from Travis Shaw.
Down to their last three outs, the Cubs quickly found themselves on their last legs. Murphy struck out swinging and Zobrist flew out to right. Báez singled on a line drive to center, but it was for naught, as Rizzo followed with a flyout to right for the final out of the game.