The Cubs made another dramatic comeback on Thursday afternoon but they were unable to finish the rally this time. The Brewers hit a home run in their final turn at-bat to earn a split in the series.
Chicago was able to grab an early lead in the 2nd inning when Christopher Morel and Cody Bellinger hit back-to-back doubles against Freddy Peralta. Marcus Stroman was sharp early, only allowing two men to reach through the first four innings.
Things completely fell apart for him in the bottom of the 5th inning after a called third strike call went against him. A single and that very questionable walk put two on with two out for Joey Wiemer, who knocked in the tying run with a base hit. Christian Yelich then launched an opposite-field three-run homer that bounced off the top of the left field wall to put Milwaukee ahead 4-1.
Bellinger answered right back in the top of the 6th with a two-run bomb, his first since April, to cut the deficit to one. Mark Leiter Jr. gave Yelich a free pass to open the 7th and he advanced to third on a stolen base and a throwing error from catcher Yan Gomes. Willy Adames brought the runner home on a sacrifice fly for what would be crucial insurance.
Gomes made up for his mistake with gusto in the 8th, crushing a long game-tying two-run blast against reliever Elvis Peguero. That good feeling was short-lived, however, as former Cub Victor Caratini pounded the game-winning solo shot to the upper deck in right field off of Michael Fulmer in the bottom of the frame. (Box score)
Is it me? Am I the drama? pic.twitter.com/76EOhPUBT1
— Chicago Cubs (@Cubs) July 6, 2023
Fulmer was ahead in the count 1-2 and threw a flat changeup right down the middle of the plate that Caratini absolutely stomped on. It was very disappointing for the Cubs reliever who had been pitching much better recently.
Why the Cubs Lost
They just couldn’t come all the way back from another late deficit and the inability to take advantage of some early scoring opportunities against Peralta also hurt.
Stats That Matter
- Stroman got absolutely hosed on what looked like a sure strike three to Caratini in the 5th, but he made a couple of mistakes after it that got tagged: 5 IP, 4 R, 4 H, 6 K, and 4 BB.
- Bellinger was a perfect 4-for-4 and ended a triple short of a cycle.
- Patrick Wisdom has just four hits with 30 strikeouts in his last 64 plate appearances.
That certainly was an eventful four games, but the Cubs couldn’t get the series win they needed. Even though they were able to tread water and not lose ground to the Brewers, they have to be disappointed. At least the team showed tremendous fight in the last three games, so hopefully they can build on that.
The Cubs finish the first half with a three-game set in the Bronx against the Yankees starting at 6:05pm CT. The scuffling Jameson Taillon battles Carlos Rodón, who will be making his season debut, in a contest airing on Marquee and 670 The Score.