Monday, July 28, 2008

Cubs Take Game One From Brewers

If you're a baseball fan, you have to admit Monday's game between the Brewers and the Cubs was about as good as it gets. Lead changes, great defense, home runs, poor defense, great duels at the plate, and controversial calls. This was an epic game, but the problem with games like this is the more you invest into a game, the harder it is to lose. I'm a Brewers fan, and this was as bad as it gets.

Things looked rough initially, as the Cubs managed some early runs to find themselves up 2-0 in the 6th inning. The Brewers were looking flat on offense, and couldn't convert their chances when they did get opportunities. For awhile there, Ted Lilly was actually out pitching CC Sabathia, which is downright ludicrous.

Some huge defense plays in the 6th turned the momentum to Milwaukee, and J.J. Hardy and Ryan Braun delivered with back to back home runs. Corey Hart then scored Prince Fielder on an RBI double, but was then thrown out at 3rd.

The lead didn't last long, although the Brewers had their chance to escape a bases loaded one out situation in the 7th without surrounding a run. Derrek Lee grounded into what should have been a sure fire double play, but Weeks decided to throw the ball into the dugout instead of into Prince's glove. Weeks has been playing awful defense as of late, and you have to think the leash is just getting shorter.

Russell Branyan delivered a pinch hit home run in the bottom of 7, but the Cubs ultimately came back in the 9th and scored two runs on Salomon Torres. The Brewers appeared to be in comeback mode in the bottom of the 9th, but Gabe Kapler just couldn't put enough under a long fly ball to left.

So what do we take from the game? Well, it wasn't so much the fact that the Brewers gave the Cubs a recipe on how to beat them as it was the Brewers just didn't play very well. There were a few close calls that could have gone the Brewers way, but it just ultimately wasn't their night. It's tough to lose the first game of this important four game set, especially with Sabathia on the hill, but there is plenty of baseball left.

That being said, it was fun to see the playoff like environment at Miller Park, even though you'd think Brewers fans would be doing a better job of keeping Cubs fans out of Miller Park by now. It seems, however, that no matter which stadium you go to, Wrigley or Miller, there will be a very strong showing from the opposing team.

If there is anything we can take away from the game tonight is that our bullpen just isn't as sharp as the Cubbies, I wouldn't mind seeing another move if we really are "going for it". Also, Weeks needs to figure things out, quickly.

Box Score.

TBC's Player of the Game: Russell Branyan kept the team alive, we'll give it to him.

(AP Photo/Darren Hauck)


Winks said...

Prince was worthy of Player of the Game too I should mention, with a couple of hits and some good defense tonight.

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