Pirates 7, Cubs 4

Box Score / Highlights

What Went Wrong

  • Michael McKenry hit his first career big fly in the eighth inning against Carlos Marmol to give the Pirates the 7-4 lead.  When Marmol entered the game, the Cubbies had the lead with two outs.
  • Neil Walker of the Pirates picked up a rare two-run infield single to give the Buccos a 2-1 edge in the third.
  • Just after the Cubs tied it at two, Lopez made a mistake to Andrew McCutchen, who homered.
  • The two players with the lowest averages in the Cubs lineup continued to scuffle.  Geovany Soto and Carlos Pena were both without a hit.
  • The first pitch Carlos Marmol delivered after entering the game left the yard as ex-Cub farmhand Josh Harrison tied the game with a run scoring single.  Harrison, who had three hits on the evening, was sent to Pittsburgh as part of the package to acquire Tom Gorzelanny and John Grabow in 2009.  Marmol failed to limit the damage to just the one run.
  • The Cubs left men on base throughout the evening.  Although it looked as if fours runs were going to be enough, the Cubs could have had three or four more.

What Went Right

  • Darwin Barney came through in a key spot once again.  For the second straight night, he delivered a go-ahead run scoring hit  late in the game. 
  • Marlon Byrd, who has struggled since returning from the DL, posted three hits and reached base four times.  It is good to see Marlon back out there after the scary plunking to the head that he took.
  • Rodrigo Lopez has actually given the Cubs a few quality starts.  Although at this point in the season most Cubs fans would rather see young hurlers from the minors than washed up veterans, still give Lopez credit for doing a solid job.  He worked six innings and surrendered three runs.
  • Aramis Ramirez greeted his former team with a solo homer in the top of the first.  It’s good to see A-Ram swinging the stick again.
  • Kerry Wood tossed one pitch in the seventh inning  and picked up a key double play on a line drive.  The pen did a nice job until the Marshall/Marmol eighth inning.
  • The Cubs showed some dandy defense, turning three twin killings, picking up an outfield assist and playing errorless baseball.  In addition, Kosuke made a great catch to save two runs from scoring early in the game.  However, they failed to turn a fourth double play in the eighth that would have ended the inning without any damage.
  • Carlos Zambrano’s rehab start went well tonight in Peoria.  He is on track to return a week from tomorrow for the third game after the All-Star Break.

Take Away

It would have been nice to see the Cubs pick up another W after their come-from-behind effort last night.  It looked as if the Cubs had this game in their pocket.  There were two outs with just one guy on base in the eighth and two on and two outs when Marshall was yanked in favor of Marmol. 

Stars of the Game
Based on Win Probability Added (WPA)

1st Star – Marlon Byrd (.190 WPA)

2nd Star – Danield McCutchen (.176 WPA)

3rd Star – Andrew McCutchen (.143 WPA)

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