CI Recap (8/23/17) – Cubs 9, Reds 3: Montgomery Dazzles, La Stella and Schwarber Go Yard in Easy Win
The Cubs’ bats didn’t calm down after they exploded for 13 runs Tuesday night. They started the scoring promptly, plating three in the first frame. Cubs hitters forced Reds starter, Asher Wojciechowski, to throw 35 pitches, only 18 of which were strikes, in that opening stanza. Wojciechowski lasted a mere 3 and 2/3 innings against one of the best offenses in the league.
Why the Cubs Won
Mike Montgomery complemented the bats by pitching an absolute gem tonight. In his six innings of work, he induced 12 ground ball outs and one fly out while striking out four. He also allowed four hits and walked only one batter.
Kyle Schwarber (three-run dong) and Tommy La Stella (two-run bomb) both hit home runs in the 4th inning to extend the Cubs’ lead to 9-0.
With two outs in the and the bases loaded in the 1st, La Stella worked a walk to drive in the first run of the game. Jason Heyward followed with a two-run single.
Justin Wilson pitched a clean inning in the 7th for the first time since he was traded to the Cubs. Hopefully this outing serves as a catalyst for future greatness.
Hector Rondon came in for the 9th and pitched horribly, allowing three solo shots. Rondon has been something of an enigma this year. He’ll have stretches where he’s the great reliever he used to be, but for some reason he’s unable to sustain the good outings.
Stats that Matter
La Stella’s homer in the 4h inning was only his third of the year. Incredibly, his OPS this year sits at .906. That’s not a bad substitute bat for Kris Bryant’s by any stretch of the imagination. It should allow Bryant to fully recover from his hand contustion before he gets back into the action.
The Cubs had five RBI with two outs tonight.
The Cubs clubbed the Reds like we’ve gotten used to seeing the past couple seasons, and it never gets old. They currently sit at the top of the NL Central with 68-57 record and a 3.5 game lead on the Milwaukee Brewers.
The Cubs go for their second straight sweep as Jake Arrieta squares off against Sal Romano Thursday at 6:10 CT. The contest will be broadcast on CSN Chicago.