Trevor Williams took the mound Tuesday night looking to build off of two solid starts since he laid an egg in Pittsburgh. He was cruising through the first four innings before running into trouble in the 5th when Ronald Acuña Jr. connected on a 481-foot solo bomb. Later in the frame, Ozzie Albies made it 2-0 with a two-out double over the head of Jason Heyward.
Williams was done after five, allowing two earned runs on six hits and two walks while striking out a career-high eight batters on 86 pitches.
The Braves added another three runs in the 8th against Brandon Workman to build a five-run cushion that felt twice as big given the way the Cubs were hitting. Ian Anderson was in complete control from start to finish, holding the Cubs to one hit with one walk and eight strikeouts over seven scoreless innings. The visitors never posed a threat at the plate whatsoever, losing by a final score of 5-0. (Box score)
Why the Cubs Lost
A brilliant performance by Anderson kept the Cubs off-balance and guessing all night. They were completely overmatched and only had two batters reach base.
Acuña’s solo homer turned out to be the game-winning run. It came after Williams had struck out four batters in a row, shifting the momentum in Atlanta’s favor and, with the way Anderson was dealing, dramatically changed the outlook of the game.
Stats That Matter
- Williams is now 1-1 with a 2.74 ERA in five career appearances against the Braves. He’s allowed only seven runs in 23 innings with 25 strikeouts
- After tonight, Williams has a strikeout rate of 24.5%, the highest of his career
- The Cubs are the only team without a start of at least seven innings this year
Sometimes you just have to tip your cap to the opposition and give credit where it’s due. This kind of offensive production may feel all too familiar, but tonight it was more about Anderson’s performance than the Cubs’ failure to hit.