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Cardinals @ Cubs 8.14 recap: Cards pound their way to series split

Cards play enjoyable game to get series split against the big bad Cubs

Jon Durr/Getty Images

St. Louis Cardinals @ Chicago Cubs

Mike Leake vs. John Lackey
7:08 p.m. CT
Wrigley Field - Chicago, Illinois

Today's Lineups -

Some News -

  • Milwaukee downed Cincinnati 7-3 -
  • Pittsburgh put it to the Dodgers 11-3 -
  • Miami beat the White Sox 5-4, and are currently tied with the Cards for the second wildcard spot -
  • Speaking of the Marlins, their season has been complicated by losing Giancarlo Stanton to a groin injury for the rest of the year. -

Things that happened -

Top halves -

Old friend John Lackey breezed through the first, although Greg Garcia hit the ball hard, lining out hard to Rizzo, and Stephen Piscotty hit it hard, flying out to the warning track.

In the second, Brandon Moss singled to right, stole second, and moved to third on a groundout, but was stranded, along with Jedd Gyorko, who worked a walk.

In the third, Garcia finally broke his hitless streak (sorta).  He rocketed a ball that ate up Ben Zobrist, and it was generously ruled a hit.  Piscotty got hit by a Lacky two-seamer.  Matt Carpenter served up what probably should have been a double play - Zobrist had to rush his throw to first, and it ended up sneaking by Rizzo, and it allowed Garcia to score.  Moss drove one deep to left, but Coghlan tracked it down to end the inning.  Cubs lead 2-1.

Yadier Molina led off the fourth with a groundball that just got through the left side.  He was quickly erased GIDP style.

Lackey mowed through the fifth, with a couple strikeouts.

In the sixth, Piscotty drove another warning track fly ball, the third almost-homer for the Cards in the game.  Crazy Wrigley Field.  It was part of another quick inning for Lackey.

Yadi singled to lead off the seventh.  Peralta grounded into a fielder's choice that was almost a double play but for his crazy speed.  Gyorko lined out hard to Bryant.  Grichuk worked a 2-2 count, when John Lackey showed some discomfort in his arm.  Joe Maddon didn't hesitate in pulling him.  Justin Grimm came in and threw one pitch to strike out Grichuk.

Lackey's final line: 6 2/3 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 5 K, 106 pitches thrown.

In the eighth, the cards took advantage of Hector Rondon after a 12-day layoff due to a sore triceps.  Kolton Wong singled.  Garcia laid down a beautiful bunt, and it worked out to be a single for him.  Piscotty, finally tired of all the almost-homers, decided to knock a for-real-homer way deep into the stands in left-center, giving the good guys a lead!  Brandon Moss followed with a solo homer.  That knocked out Rondon in favor of Travis Wood.  Wood walked Peralta and then gave up a single to Gyroko.  Grichuk added yet another run, doubling to the right field corner, scoring Peralta.  Wong finally flew out to end the inning.  Cards lead 6-3.

Aroldis Chapman took over in the ninth.  He did his dominating the Cardinals thing to hold their lead to two.

Bottom halves -

The Cubs jumped on the scoreboard early.  Dexter Fowler worked a walk and Kris Bryant flared a single to right.  Anthony Rizzo drove in Fowler, a single past the diving Gyorko, and Bryant scored on a Ben Zobrist sac fly to left.  Leake used the momentum to get the next two guys, but Cubs lead 2-0.

Leake had a much better second inning, striking out two in a 1-2-3 frame.  

In the third, Peralta made a nice play on a hard liner off Fowler's bat to prevent a base hit.  Leake also got Bryant and Rizzo, both via groundouts.

Peralta helped out even more in the fourth.  He made a diving rolling play and a nice throw from his knees to get Addison Russell.  It was another 1-2-3 inning for Leake.

And another in the fifth, including 2 more strikeouts.  Leake was rolling, retiring 15 straight.

With one out in the sixth, Bryant broke the out-streak.  He tripled to the right-center gap.  Rizzo took Leake the other way to drive in Bryant.  Russell hit an almost-homer of his own to end the inning.  Cubs up 3-1.

Chris Coghlan doubled to the left field corner to lead off the seventh.  Jason Heyward grounded to third - and got to first at the exact same time the ball hit Carpenter's mitt.  It's as close of a play as it could possibly be.  He was called safe, and in the end, there just wasn't enough to overturn the call on the field, though the New York crowd certainly took their time to make the decision.  That put runners on the corners with nobody out.  Mike decided at that point to go to the 'pen, bringing in Matt Bowman.  Matt walked Wilson Contreras to load the bases.  Matt Szczur lined out to center, and Randal made a good throw into the plate to keep the runners in their places.  Bowman struck Fowler out looking at a fast ball at the knees.  Then Bryant flew out to right, leaving the bases loaded.  Good job Matt Bowman.

Leake's final line: 6+ IP, 6 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 1 BB, 4 K, 77 pitches thrown.

Kevin Siegrist in the eighth.  Rizzo turned on a high fast ball and crushed a solo homer to greet Kevin.  Siegrist struck out Zobrist, but then felt something weird in his hand/wrist.  Molina called Matheny out, and Matheny made the move to Seung-Hwan Oh, who had been warming along with Broxton.  I was pleased with that decision, but not that Siegrist had to leave the game.  Oh struck out Russell with three pitches.  Javier Baez singled.  Oh got Heyward to fly out, but Jason made him work a little bit to do so.  Cards lead 6-4.

Oh again in the ninth.  He was awesome.  He struck out the side.  Cards win 6-4.

Final Notes -

  • Leake's start was encouraging.
  • Fifty cent drinks at On the Run at Mobil tomorrow!
  • This was probably the most satisfying win I've been able to recap this year.
  • Fangraphs
  • Game notes: CardinalsCubs

Looking ahead -

Tuesday, Jaime Garcia and the Cards head to Houston to take on Dallas Keuchel and the Astros.  The game starts at 7:10 CT.