Cardinals 5 @ Cubs 1

Box Score / Highlights / Condensed Game

Admit it, there was some part of you that thought that maybe, just maybe, the Cubs would get a sweep of this series. I won’t laugh at you. I recorded the game on DVR and was pretty excited to watch when I got home. I’m a big believer that when you record a game, you avoid any chance of seeing the score so you can watch the game with no knowledge of what to expect. Unfortunately, there are times that you are made aware of the results in some form, and for me, that spoils it. Today, that didn’t happen, and it probably would have been nice if I’d have seen the score. It would have saved me from watching the last half.

Chris Volstad made start number four and really looked fairly decent through the first five innings. After that, the wheels just seemed to fall off. Through four outings he’s sporting an 0-3 record with a very ugly 6.14 ERA. He’s just not been very good. Of the five guys in the rotation right now, he’s the one I have the least amount of confidence in when he takes the mound. I think you still run him out there a little more to see if he can figure things out because of the fact that no one has really shown anything to say they deserve a shot to replace him, but the question on when to make the change begins to be discussed and it gets louder with each failed outing.

Offensively, we really couldn’t do much on offense, but the inning that bothered me the most was the 5th. If you’ve read my posts, you should know that I’m not a fan of “smallball”. I don’t like the play for one run approach. I want the big inning. I want the crooked numbers. Because of that, I saw no point in Tony Campana bunting with one out and a runner on 1st and 3rd. The game is tied at one at the time and you’ve got a great chance and really doing some damage in the inning with the 2,3,4 hitters due up. At the very least, if Campana makes contact, because of his speed, you’re almost assured that he’ll stay out of the double play which should produce a run. The bunt doesn’t make sense. Even if he gets it down, which he didn’t, odds are that the runner on third stays put. Now you have runners on 2nd and 3rd, but two outs. I hate hate hate bunting, but especially in an instance like that.

Carlos Marmol came in to pitch the 9th and continued to look less than impressive. He didn’t allow a run, but the pitches he throws just don’t seem to have a purpose. I honestly believe that when he releases the ball, he’s not 100% certain it will go anywhere close to where it’s designed to go. When you watch him through it just looks like he rears back and throws with no regard to control or strategy in terms of setting hitters up.

Overall, not the best game to watch, but you really can’t complain about a series win against what may be the best team in the division. A sweep would have been nice, but I’ll take a series win any day.

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Joe Aiello is the founder of View From the Bleachers and one of the lead writers as well as host of VFTB Radio. Growing up in Chicago, he fondly remembers attending games in the bleachers before that was the popular thing to do. Currently Joe resides in North Carolina with his wife and three kids. Connect with Joe via Twitter / Facebook / E-mail