Cubs 5 @ Nationals 11

Box Score / Highlights / Condensed Game

What Went Right

  • The Cubs put up 5 runs on 8 hits–a genuinely good night, especially when compared to some of their recent no-shows.
  • That included a triple and a homer for Alfonso Soriano, driving in 3 of the Cub’s 5 runs. It’s never fun to lose by 6 runs, but it’s borderline tragic to waste the kind of effort Soriano gave tonight.
  • Three Cubs relievers threw scoreless innings of relief tonight. Jaye Chapman (who?), Miquel Socolovich (humina-who?) and Blake Parker managed to temporarily stop the bleeding. Their performances reminded me of a joke from the James Garner western-comedy classic, Support Your Local Sheriff! Garner’s traveling gunfighter has been pressed into service as the new sheriff of a small, lawless town. The town’s mayor, played by Harry Morgan, hands Garner a bullet-dented badge, and Garner wonders aloud if it managed to save the life of its previous owner. Morgan says, “Well, it sure would have, if it hadn’t been for all them other bullets flyin’ in from everywhere.”

What Went Wrong

  • Those other bullets in this case were all the other pitchers the Cubs trotted out. Chris Rusin, Rafael Dolis, Alberto Cabrera, and Jake Beliveau were all varying degrees of useless. Even Socolovich stuck around long enough to surrender a run. The fact is, when you’re going up against the best team in baseball with a patchwork pitching staff full of middling veterans, minor leaguers, and cast offs, these are the kind of ruinous nights you have to look out for. The less said about it, the better.
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