(Garza Dominated the Brewers in the Series Finale/Getty Images)
What started out as a second straight day of a pitchers duel between the Brewers (4-3) and Cubs at Wrigley Field quickly turned into a dominating performance as the Cubs (2-5) took it to Zack Greinke in the 3rd inning in route to an 8-0 win the series finale.
After two innings of shutout baseball things fell apart for Zack Greinke on the mound in the bottom of the third. After a lead off double by Steve Clevenger Chicago found a way to get the ball down all around the confines of Wrigley Field as they used five run scoring singles from Reed Johnson, Darwin Barney, Starlin Castro, Alfonso Soriano, and Ian Stewart to take a stranglehold on the game.
Amazingly Greinke was able to finish out the inning, but it wasn’t pretty as he gave up 7 hits and 6 runs. He returned for the 4th, but thanks to one strange play the Brewers starter tacked on two more runs to his total for the day before exiting, having pitched just 3 2/3 innings.
With two outs and a man on 2nd base, Brewers SS Alex Gonzalez made a great diving stop of a David DeJesus shot up the middle. Gonzalez got up and fired to 1st base. The problem with that? First baseman Mat Gamel was nowhere to be found at the base as he believed the ball to have gone to the outfield and began to get in to cut-off position. That meant it was an infield single and a throwing error on Gonzalez. No doubt a tough one to take, but the right scoring decision nonetheless.
That’s where this pitchers duel diverted as Matt Garza continued to master the Brewers hitters. He gave up only three hits in nearly going the distance to gain his first victory of the season. It was also the Cubs only win in the four game series with the Brewers as well as just their second victory on the young season.
MIL – Zack Greinke: 3.2IP, 9H, 8R, 8ER, 1BB, 5K, 6.75 ERA
CHC – Matt Garza: 8.2IP, 3H, 0R, 0ER, 2BB, 9K, 1.23 ERA
Nyjer Morgan: 2-4, 1BB, 2 total bases, .190avg (season)
Jonathan Lucroy: 1-3, .357avg (season)
Manny Parra: 2.1IP, 2H, OR, OER, 4K
Tim Dillard: 2IP, 2H, 0R, 0ER, 2K
Steve Clevenger: 3-4, 2 runs
Starlin Castro: 2-4, 2RBI, 1 run
David DeJesus: 2-3, 2 runs, .318avg (season)
– The only note that really needs to be talked about is the why of what happened in the bottom of the 3rd inning and once again thanks to Brooksbaseball.net for the graph. Basically it shows that 7 of the 9 balls put in play that weren’t outs were pretty much right over the plate and in the middle of the strike zone. Add in the fact that only two swinging strikes were inside the zone and you have a recipe for disaster and that’s exactly what happened.
Up Next: The Brewers take on the old Milwaukee team as they travel to the Atlanta Braves for a three game weekend series. Randy Wolf will get the start in a game that has first pitch scheduled for 6:35pm Central.