Last night, the Cubs avoided getting swept by the hated Brewers and then celebrated like they’d won game 7 of the World Series.
CHICAGO — Jonathan Lucroy hit a grand slam and drove in seven runs for Milwaukee, but Alfonso Soriano’s RBI single capped a three-run comeback in the ninth inning Thursday that lifted the Chicago Cubs over the Brewers 12-11.In a seesaw game featuring a combined 15 extra-base hits, the Cubs led 3-0, trailed 9-3 and were still down 11-9 going into the ninth.Starlin Castro hit an RBI single against Francisco Rodriguez (2-7), Anthony Rizzo tied it with his second double of the afternoon and Soriano won the game with his one-out drive off the center-field wall.
No wonder Soriano doesn’t want to go to San Francisco. He has everything he needs right here!
Ah, but the warm and fuzzy feelings didn’t last, because I woke up this morning to this:
CHICAGO — When Josh Vitters was promoted from Triple-A Iowa to the Cubs on Aug. 5, the plan was to give him the majority of playing time at third base. That plan has changed.
Luis Valbuena started at third base on Thursday, and may be getting more playing time in the final month than Vitters, who was the Cubs’ No. 1 Draft pick in 2007. Vitters, 23, was batting .093 (5-for-54) with 19 strikeouts, and hitless in his last four games.
“I’ll still mix and match,” Cubs manager Dale Sveum said Thursday. “You might see Valbuena in there a little bit more. We’re just giving Vitters some time to kick back here now and see what happens. You’re trying to evaluate, but you’re trying to win ballgames at the same time. We’re having trouble scoring runs, period, so the at-bats — Valbuena is getting on base, he’s swinging the bat well, playing good defense.”
Sveum admitted it’s a change from earlier.
“I have shifted gears a little that way, because we’re not getting anything out of that position,” Sveum said. “A guy who hasn’t struck out much is striking out quite a bit and not making contact. We’re just going to evaluate and keep plugging along to determine what do we have and moving forward and evaluating these guys in situations that hopefully they’re going to succeed.”
Dale, how can I put this?
ARE YOU SIMPLE?
Look, it doesn’t matter if you win games. It doesn’t matter if you don’t win another game all year. Not winning another game all season would be a GOOD THING, because it would help the team get a better draft spot. You have one job, and one job alone for the rest of this season, and that is to develop the kids. PUT VITTERS IN.
The Cubs welcome the San Francisco Giants to Wrigley this afternoon, with Chris Volstad (seriously? again? already?) taking on Madison Bumgarner (14-8, 2.93) today at 1:20 pm CT. Lineups to come.
Don’t forget that Wrigley Talk Friday comes your way today at 1:00 pm CT on Blog Talk Radio.