By: Alex Patt
The Cubs had a pretty down week overall last week which ended in gut-wrenching fashion. From Monday through Sunday the Cubs went 2-5 against the Pirates and Brewers as their lead in the NL Central is now at 2.0 over the Cardinals and 2.5 over the Brewers.
It began in Pittsburgh against the Pirates team who is riddled with injuries and out of contention. They lost the first two by a score of 12-0 and 4-3 in another late 8th inning collapse. In the 12-0 loss Jake Arrieta left with a grade I hamstring strain which sidelined him for roughly the next 10 days, but the injury could have been worse. The next day the Cubs had a 3-2 lead in the 8th inning slip away as Card Edwards Jr. gave up two runs that started with a lead-off walk and followed by several singles. They redeemed themselves the last two games of the four game set by winning 1-0 on an Alex Avila RBI triple and 8-2 with Jon Lester throwing well and Anthony Rizzo adding a few more RBIs to his 100+ RBI season.
Things got real ugly at home in a big series against the Brewers. The Cubs entered the series 5.0 up on both the Brewers and Cardinals and it seemed like they were just a few more good games away from putting the central to bed. The Brewers came to Wrigley Field and swept the Cubs over the weekend, outscoring them 20-3. The offense could not get going at all against Jimmy Nelson, Chase Anderson and Zach Davies and the Brewers bullpen as their offense torched Mike Montgomery in the 15-2 blowout loss on Saturday. Nothing to report on the Cubs end over the weekend because nothing really happened.
There are now 3 weeks left and as of Tuesday afternoon the magic number is at 18. They will take on the Mets at Wrigley for a three game set next.