Matt Carpenter led the game of with a weak, routine ground ball to 2B that defensive wizard Javier Baez booted, allowing the Cardinal lead-off man to reach. Pham and Fowler followed by tagging a pair of line drives to deep RF, but Jason Heyward made a couple of wonderful plays to turn them into outs, as he does. Jedd Gyorko then laced a double into the gap in LCF, but Carpenter tried to score from 1B and was gunned down by a mile for the final out. Quintana didn’t miss many bats in his first inning at Wrigley, which required just 12 pitches.
Michael Wacha came out throwing 97mph bullets, getting a trio ground outs from Heyward, Bryant, and Rizzo. To match Quintana’s efficiency, he required just 11 pitches.
Yadier Molina led of the 2nd with a clean line drive to LF. Quintana struck out DeJong, but Randal Grichuk socked a towering 2-run HR to LCF. Wong followed with a walk, but Michael Wacha drop a sac bunt right out in front of the plate that Willson Contreras turned into a 2-6-3 double play. Quintana was now at 27 pitches. 2-0 Cardinals.
Between innings, Matt Carpenter, who hurt his quad on the play at home the inning prior, was replaced with Luke Voit.
Wacha struck out Contreras, got Schwarber to ground out on a soft nubber out in front of the plate, then retired Happ on a hot shot to 3B. Wacha was at just 23 pitches.
Voit battled Quintana to a full count, but was called out on perfectly-placed inside fastball. Pham flew out to RF and Fowler grounded out to SS. Quintana was at 40 pitches.
Addison Russell led off the bottom half by lacing a double past Pham in LF. Wacha battled back to get Baez to pop out to CF and Quintana to ground out on a come-backer, but Jason Heyward smoked a double off the wall in RCF and Bryant dumped a lazy pop fly down the line in short RF to score Heyward. Rizzo battled Wacha for 8 pitches, but finally grounded out to 2B. Wacha was suddenly at 54 pitches. 2-2 Tie.
Jedd Gyorko knocked a solid base hit to RF to lead off the 4th, and traded places with Molina when the Cardinal catcher grounded into a fielder’s choice. With DeJong batting, Molina then tried stealing 2B, but was gunned down by Contreras. On the very next pitch, Paul DeJong launched a HR into the basket in LCF. Quintana retired Grichuk staring at his 63rd pitch. 3-2 Cardinals.
Wacha got Contreras to ground out to 3B to lead off the home half, but Kyle Schwarber crushed a towering home run to RF to tie the game. Wacha recovered to strike out Happ and Russell to end the inning. He was at 66 pitches. 3-3 Tie.
Quintana had a nice, easy 5th. He got Wong to pop out to short LF, Wacha to strike out, and Voit to ground out to 2B. He was at 75 pitches.
Wacha struck out the side in the 5th. First, he got Baez on 3 pitches, ultimately chasing a cutter away. Then he got Quintana on 5 pitches, finishing him on a cutter inside. Finally he got Heyward on 4 pitches, the last of he enticed the Cub outfielder to hack at a change up in the dirt. He was at 78 pitches.
Pham battled Quintana to a full count to start the 6th, but struck out on a well-placed fastball on the inside half. Pham was displeased with the call, but the ball was clearly a strike. Fowler worked a walk, but Quintana struck out Gyorko and Molina, looking at a fastball and chasing a fastball up and away, respectively. Quintana was at 99 pitches, and his night was over.
Bryant led of the bottom half by lacing a double off the wall in LF. Rizzo followed with another fly out to LF, but Willson Contrearas crushed a go-ahead, 2-run HR just over the wall in LF. Wacha settled down and got Schwarber to pop out in foul territory and Happ to line out to RF, but the damage was done. Wacha was at 105 pitches and his evening was done. 5-3 Cubs.
Hector Rondon relieved Quintana. He struck out DeJong to start the 7th. Grichuk beat out an infield single, but Kolten Wong popped out into foul territory. Greg Garcia managed a full-count walk, but Voit grounded out to 3B.
Seung Hwan Oh relieved Wacha. In a stunning display, he struck out Russell and Baez, then got Zobrist to pop out to 2B.
Carl Edwards, Jr. relieved Quintana. Tommy Pham led off with a walk, but Edwards regained his command and struck out Fowler, got Gyorko to fly out to deep RF, and got Molina to pop out into short RF.
Tyler Lyons relieved Oh. He struck out Heyward on a slider away and got Bryant to fly out to deep CF. Rizzo leaned in and earned a HBP, but Lyons got Contreras to fly out to end the inning.
Wade Davis entered next to close it out. Paul DeJong had other plans, and laced the first pitch back up the middle for a single. Grichuk struck out on a curveball in the dirt, Wong flew out to deep LCF, and Kelly tapped back to Davis to end it. Cubs win 5-3.
Michael Wacha: 6IP, 5ER, 6H, 6K, 2BB, 43 GSc
Jose Quintana: 6IP, 3ER, 5H, 7K, 2BB, 47GSc
- Coming into tonight’s game, Randal Grichuk had a 274 tOPS+ against the Cubs, which is an adjusted OPS+ stat that shows which teams he performs against best. That’s his highest mark against any team this year, which means he’s hit the Cubs better than he has against any other team.
- After Wacha threw 119 pitches in his last start, the Cardinals could have found a way to DL Wacha and skip this start. He would have been eligible to return in time for his next turn in the rotation.
- Seung Hwan Oh recorded his first clean inning since the 4th of July.