Top 1st: Soriano was caught daydreaming in LF as Ludwick’s fly ball sailed over his head for a double. Good pick up out of the dirt by Dee Lee on the throw following Puhols’ grounder to SS. Lopez looks at strike 3. No score.Bottom 1st: Dee Lee pounds a double off the deep center field wall. No score.
Top 2nd: Glaus goes down swinging. The Fox TV announcers are definitely out of towners. Touristas. Navy Pier. Rush Street. I can’t listen. There’s a 5-7 second delay on the telecast. So Pat & Ron tell me what just happened, and then, 5 seconds later, I see it on TV. It’s like Deja-Vu all over again on every pitch. Interesting effect.
Bottom 2nd: **BIG INNING ALERT** Edmonds drives one high off the left field indent, and cruises into 2nd with a double. Soto walks. The Cubs have runners on 1st & 2nd with no outs. DeRose hits into a 4-6 fielder’s choice, leaving runners at the corners with one out. Fuku walks on 4 pitches to load the bases. Joel Pineiro is throwing a lot of balls. Lilly goes down swinging. 2 out. Soriano lines a hit to LF which Barton flubs. The ball rolls to the wall. Three runs score and Alfonso lands on 3rd base. Theriot flies out to right. Score is 3-0 Cubs after 2 innings.
Top 3rd: Catcher Jason Larue leads off the inning which begs the question: Whatever has happened to Yadier Molina? I mean, I know what happened, but not what’s happened since then. Ted (“The Human Steamroller”) Lilly must have really banged him up. With one out, Izturis bounces a single over Lilly’s head. Theriot grabs it but has no play. Ludwick grounds into a 6-4-3 double play to end the inning. Cubs lead 3-0.
Bottom 3rd: Cincy leads Milwaukee 1-0 . I think LaRussa addressed the Molina situation on FoxTV just now, but I wasn’t able to get the sound on in time. What did he say? Cubs lead the Cards 3-0.
Top 4th: Spectacular play by Ramirez & Dee Lee to get Pujols out. No runs scored. Nevertheless, I’d feel better with 10 More Insurance runs (IFBWTMIR).
Bottom 4th: **BIG INNING ALERT** Soto gets to 1st on an error by Troy Glaus at 3rd. DeRosa slams an RBI double off the indent vines in left. Soto scores. Cubs lead 4-0. DeRosa advances to 3rd on a ground out by Fuku. One out. DeRosa scores on a squeeze bunt by Lilly who is safe on the play. Cubs lead 5-0. The Cubs really executed the squeeze play well there. Does that one qualify as a “suicide squeeze”?
Top 5th: Three up and three down. Cubs lead 5-0.
Bottom 5th: Aramis singles to left with 1 out. But Edmonds’ 4-6-3 double play ends the inning. Cubs lead 5-0. **IFBWTMIR**
Top 6th: **BIG INNING ALERT** Izturis singles to center. Ludwick goes down swinging for the second out. Pujols gets to 1st base on Lilly’s 1st walk of the game. Runners on 1st & 2nd with 2 out. Cards execute a successful double steal. Runners on 2nd & 3rd. Lopez gets an infield RBI single to short. Troy Glaus slams a 3 run HR to left. Cubs lead 5-4. Ron Santo needs Oxygen. Barton grounds out to end the BIG INNING. Cubs lead is cut to one run: 5-4. As Ferris Buehler once said: “Life comes at you fast…”
Bottom 6th: Soto gets on with an infield single to 3rd. Soto is out by a mile trying to get to 2nd base. Two out. Did Fuku miss a hit & run sign? Fuku goes down swinging. Not Fukudome-san’s most stellar at-bat. (IWFBWTMIR)
Top 7th: Josh Phelps, pinch hitting for Pineiro, is called out on strikes. Jason Larue goes down swinging. Cesar Izturis grounds out to short to end the inning. 3 up and 3 down. I suspect Ted Lilly is through for the day. But he finishes on a classy note.
Bottom 7th: Fontenot, pinch hitting for Lillly, grounds out to 1st. Soriano flies out to right, and Theriot goes down swinging. Three up and three down.
Top 8th: **BIG INNING ALERT** Carlos Mormol is pitching. Ludwick, Pujols & Lopez are due up. The umpire is not calling strikes for Carlos. Three straight balls called. Two straight strikes. Full count. Ludwick flies out to center. Cincy is leading Milwaukee 3-2. Pujols pops out to 2nd. 2 out. Cincy takes a 4-2 lead over the Brewers. Lopez grounds out 3-1. Very solid relief performance by Carlos Marmol. Cubs lead 5-4 and are 3 Cardinal outs away from VICTORY!!
Bottom 8th: Dee Lee fans. One out. Ramirez fans. Two out. The ump is calling strikes on Edmonds. So, having no other choice, Jim Edmonds swings and grounds out 4-3.
Top 9th: **BIG INNING ALERT** Kerry Wood is pitching. We are three outs (and one run) away. Troy Glaus walks. The tying run is on 1st base. The pinch runner is cut down at 2nd base on a 4-6 fielder’s choice. One out, tying run on first. Schumaker looks at strike 3. A thing of beauty. Two out. Pinch hitter Aaron Miles flies out to center field for the 3rd and final out. Cubs win the game, (5-4), and take the division title.
I’m hearing The Fabulous Thunderbirds: “Wrap It Up, I’ll Take It!”