Another beautiful day at Wrigley. However for the Cubs, it was an ugly game from the beginning.
Entering the bottom half of the 1st, Chicago (23-26) was already down by 5 runs. That deficit was courtesy of their starter Randy Wells (3-3).
Wells was pulled in the 1st before recording a single out. The Cardinals (28-21) touched Wells for 5 runs (all earned) on 6 hits. With his poor preformance, Wells may be sent to the bullpen with Carlos Zambrano returning.
James Russell relieved Wells and had his longest outing of the year. Russell was spectacular allowing only 2 hits while throwing 4 shutout innings.
The combination of Bob Howry, Jeff Stevens, and Carlos Zambrano were impressive, combining for 4 shutout innings and allowing only 3 hits.
St. Louis struggled against the Cubs’ bullpen, that is until the 9th inning. Lou Piniella decided to get John Grabow an inning of work. Clearly, it was a mistake.
Grabow, who has struggled all season long was hit by a line drive on the hip. It was only a sign of things to come. A couple batters later, Ryan Ludwick connected on a Grabow pitch and deposited it into the stands to extend the Cardinals’ lead to 7-1.
The lone Cubs’ run came against the Cardinals’ ace Christ Carpenter (6-1) in the form of a pinch hit home run off the bat of Tyler Colvin (5). Colvin continues to impress in limited duty and is pushing for more playing time.
The Cubs will send Carlos Silva (6-0) to the mound on Saturday to even up the series.