The Chicago Cubs scored five runs in the top half of the eighth inning to run away from the cross town rival Chicago White Sox and successfully complete the season sweep. The Cubs won the first three games of the series in late May, this made Monday night’s game a rain make up from what was scheduled to be the second game of the series. The Cubs won the game 8-2.
There were some unfamiliar faces getting it done for the Cubs in this one, Luis Valbuena and Dave Sappelt combined for five hits in eight at bats. Valbuena has been a White Sox killer over the course of the season, hitting in the mid .300′s. Sappelt was seeing action because of the Scott Hairston trade yesterday. The pair also drove in five of the eight runs. Alfonso Soriano also performed well for the Cubs, Soriano had three hits in four trips, scored four runs, and had a big home run to left in the sixth inning driving in his only run of the night. Cody Ransom also had two hits and two RBI’s for the Cubs.
The Cubs as a team were 5-13 with runners in scoring position. Valbuena and Ransom each had a pair of two out RBI’s in the eighth inning, which was key in helping the Cubs pull away.
Matt Garza was the Matt Garza we’ve gotten used to seeing over the past month or so, Garza went seven innings, gave up five hits, two runs, but only one was earned. Garza also struck out six batters during his time. Blake Parker and James Russell combined to pitch the last two innings, the two were perfect giving up no hits and no runs. Parker has been pleasantly surprising for a bullpen that has really struggled, Parker has a 2.25 ERA over 16 innings pitched, he has also struck out 16 batters.
For the White Sox it was a big time struggle to get anything going against Garza. The only real damage they did in fact do, came in the third inning when Josh Phegly hit his second career home run for the Sox. The other run came in the sixth inning when Gordon Beckham stole home after Dioner Navarro’s attempted peg of Alex Rios trying to steal second, went in to center field.
The pitching staff also struggled. Starter Hector Santiago went five and third innings, gave up five hits, and two earned runs, but it was all down hill from there. Matt Thornton came in and recorded just one out in the eighth inning, he gave up three runs on two hits during his time. Nate Jones then replaced Thornton and gave up two runs of his own.
The Cubs will now turn their attention to the LA Angels who will come in to town tomorrow for a three game set at Wrigley Field. Game time is scheduled for 7:05 PM CT and the probable starters are, Joe Blanton (2-10) for the Angels and Travis Wood (5-6) for the Cubs.
Topics: Alex Rios, Alfonso Soriano, Blake Parker, Chicago Cubs, Chicago White Sox, Cody Ransom, Dave Sappelt, Dioner Navarro, Gordon Beckham, Hector Santiago, James Russell, Joe Blanton, Josh Phegly, Los Angeles Angels, Luis Valbuena, Matt Garza, Matt Thornton, Nate Jones, Scott Hairston, Travis Wood