Game 7: And Then There Were Two
Brewers 0 @ Cubs 8
WHAT WENT RIGHT
- The third inning. Steve Clevenger led off with a double. Reed Johnson followed with an RBI single to make it 1-0 good guys. After a one-out hit by David DeJesus, Darwin Barney drove in the Cubs’ second run with a knock to CF. Starlin Castro came through with another single to make it 3-0. A wild pitch moved runners to second and third. Alfonso Soriano broke it open with a two-run blooper to RF. He even managed to steal second! Ian Stewart brought home run number six with a single the other way.
- Matt Garza took advantage of some rare run support and cruised to his first win. Garza went 8.2 innings, punching out nine Brewers. By the way, did you see his throw to 1B in the ninth? Yikes!
- DeJesus covered a ton of ground and made a fantastic sliding catch down the RF line. Did I mention how much I like the DeJesus acquisition?
- The Clevenger show continued in the fourth as he collected his second double of the game. An odd play between 1B and 2B allowed DeJesus to reach and Clevenger to score the Cubs’ seventh run. Barney actually drew a base on balls (not a typo), and Zack Greinke’s day was done. Castro greeted reliever Manny Parra with an RBI single to make it 8-0.
WHAT WENT WRONG
- Very little. Not even Len and Bob could mess up this day. However, they gave it their best shot with a painful discussion about “the Strasburger.” The Dickey Simpkins seventh-inning stretch didn’t help much either.
DOIN’ IT THEIR WAY
Many of my Cub fan friends hate the Milwaukee Brewers. For some reason I still have a soft spot in my heart for the Brew Crew of yesterday. Maybe it’s just another nostalgic leap back to the 1980s (kind of like when I watch reruns of “WKRP” and listen to Loverboy “Get Lucky” on cassette).
Of course we all remember Yount, Molitor, Cooper, and Oglivie. However, my Milwaukee favorites tend to be less celebrated. Here’s a snapshot of “old pals:”
- Moose Hass, 1976-1985 (as a Brewer)—You gotta love a guy named Moose. OK, his real name is Bryan, but what’s fun about that? In 1983, the Moose racked up a 13-3 record with an ERA of 3.27. The Fonz would be proud!
- Rob Deer, 1986-1990—And you thought Alfonso Soriano struck out too much? In 1987, Deer whiffed an astounding 186 times in 474 at bats. The good news…he hit bombs. Deer was the text-book definition of “all or nothing.”
- Greg Vaughn, 1989-1996—Another power hitter, Vaughn was fun to watch and frustrating to watch, often in the same game. He would club a light-tower homer in one at bat and look completely over-matched in the next. His best season (50 home runs in 1998) came in a Padre uniform. I don’t have a soft spot in my heart for the Padres (see NL playoffs, 1984).
Jeff D’Amico, 1996-2002—D’Amico’s injury-plagued career lasted only 784 Major League innings. In 2000, he was reasonably healthy and went 12-7 with a 2.63 ERA. I have no idea why I rooted for this guy. Maybe he pitched for my Diamond Mind Baseball team back then. Maybe I’m just a sucker for players with odd names. Maybe he’s a distant cousin. Maybe he owes me money. Maybe they’ll bring back “Saved by the Bell.” Maybe Twitter is just a fad. Maybe Oswald acted alone. Maybe aliens have planted some sort of mind-control device in my brain. Maybe it’s time to end this article.