Cubs 2, Padres 9

Box Score / Highlights

The final game of 2011 plays just like the rest of the season as the Cubs finish with a 71-91 record. Ryan Dempster finishes the season at 10-14 with a 4.80 ERA as he gives up 9 earned runs in less than 6 innings, capped off by a Will Venable grand slam.
The offense couldn’t get anything going with only 6 hits and 2 walks. The first run scored on an infield single by Tony Campana and Starlin Castro added a sac fly in the 5th. But that was it. 9-2 Padres and the end of a rough season.

What went right:

The Cubs season ended and with it Mike Quade’s managerial career in Chicago.

What went wrong:

This season can be summed up pretty well with this game. Starting pitching was weak. The manager left the starter in too long. Starlin Castro and DJ Lemahieu made an error each. The team was 1-7 with runners in scoring position. The only thing missing was a Carlos Marmol walk or two in the ninth.
That’s all that needs to be said about this game, I’m sure there will be a season recap at some point, but we all know how 2011 went. Let the offseason begin!

Around the League:

The wild card races were unbelievable tonight and might be the most exciting night of baseball I’ve ever seen (Cubs games excluded). In the National League, the Cardinals easily put away the Astros 8-0. The Phillies/Braves started an hour earlier, but the Phils tied the game in the 9th inning and into extra innings they go allowing the Cards to sit by their lockers and watch their destiny unfold. In the 13th inning, the trade deadline addition of the year, Hunter Pence, comes through with an RBI single to put the Phillies up 4-3. Freddie Freeman would ground into a game ending double play a few minutes later, allowing the St. Louis Cardinals into the postseason one more time.

In the American League, the Boston Red Sox and Tampa Bay Rays were tied in the standings with both games starting at the same time. Tampa Bay’s David Price got roughed up early and the Yankees jumped out to a 7-0 lead behind two home runs and five RBI’s for Mark Teixeira.
Over in Baltimore, the Red Sox jump up 1-0 in the third inning but the Orioles strike back for two of their own. Boston would score one run in each of the 4th and 5th innings and it would remain 3-2 while scoreboard watching the Yankees-Rays game.
Back in Tampa Bay, with the Yankees on top with a commanding 7-0 lead, the Rays score SIX runs in the 8th inning  including a 3-run home run by Evan Longoria and one more in the 9th and send it into extras!
In Baltimore, the Red Sox bring in Jonathon Papelbon to close it out in the 9th, but with two outs, Nolan Reimold doubles in the tying run! Robert Andino comes up next with a single and the O’s score two in the 9th to put the Red Sox fate in the Rays hands.
The crowd in Tampa Bay realizes that the O’s have beaten the Red Sox and erupt during a BJ Upton at bat in the 12th inning. He would strike out for the first out. The next batter…Evan Longoria. Line drive down the left field line over the fence for a walk off wild card clinching home run, sending the Red Sox home after one of most epic September collapses in history.

I love baseball!

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

1st Star – Nick Hundley (.207 WPA)

2nd Star – Wade LeBlanc (.145 WPA)

3rd Star – Cameron Maybin (.109 WPA)

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