Cubs Cut Down Padres at Wrigley

Friars have two runners thrown out at the plate in one-run loss

On Thursday the Padres snapped their 7-game losing streak with a win over the Cubs.

Apparently asking for a winning streak is just too much.

The Padres, who have not won back-to-back games since June 12-13 against the Cardinals, lost to Chicago 5-4 in an afternoon meeting at Wrigley Field. San Diego could not overcome two things: Javier Baez and more terrible baserunning.

Baez, the Cubs infielder who is putting himself squarely in the mix for the National League MVP Award, homered, tripled, walked and scored twice. He would have been out on the 3-bagger when a relay throw beat him but Baez did some Matrix-level arm movements to avoid a poor tag attempt by Padres 3rd baseman Christian Villanueva.

Baserunning was a theme in this game because the Cubs did it well and the Padres did not.

Trailing 4-1 in the 8th inning the Friars got back-to-back singles from Cory Spangenberg and Travis Jankowski then scored a run when Cubs pitcher Steve Cishek made a throwing error on a Manuel Margot grounder. With the lead cut to 4-2, runners on first and second, and nobody out, Padres manager Andy Green had catcher A.J. Ellis bunt the runners over.

This effectively killed the momentum.

Hunter Renfroe hit a ground ball to 2nd base, Jankowski broke for home, and Baez threw him out easily.

In the 9th inning the Cubs had their 5-4 lead but Spangenberg was on 3rd base with one out. Chicago pulled the infield in. Margot hit a grounder to the left side, Spangenberg broke for home, and David Bote threw him out easily. Two runners thrown out when they had no chance of scoring … one-run loss.

Same two teams go at it on Saturday in another matinee on the North Side. Walker Lockett takes the mound looking for his first MLB win against Kyle Hendricks.

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