They were one strike away. One strike! The Cubs succumbed to the Cardinals after their heated rivals squawked their way back to a 6-5 victory.
There are a few things that someone can take away from the series. There’s the high road and say that the Cubs pushed the mighty St. Louis Cardinals to the edge making a statement that they’re contending for the Division lead. Some may say that the Cubs still have a long way to go or some folks might add that was a hard fought series proving that this division rivalry is one of the best in professional sports.
I like the last one.
“We did so many good things,” Joe Maddon said. “I can’t walk away and be all upset. Of course, Strop would have liked to made a better pitch there and he didn’t. Peralta’s pretty good and he hit a home run. It happens. Regardless of who it happened against, I’ll keep repeating the refrain that we can play with anybody. We proved it the last four days and we’ll continue to move forward.”
He’s right. The Cubs shouldn’t feel mad or frustrated going toe to toe with the division champs before finally losing a heartbreaker.
Both teams played like the playoffs and the thing I loved about this series was that the Cardinals were shaking in their stirrups.
“We should’ve won tonight,” Chicago starter Jason Hammel said. “They stole one at the end. We’re very confident in what we can do. It’s not that we’re surprised — we know we’re a good team and we’ve been playing good ball all year. We’ve played close ballgames and won a lot of them, too.”
To add insult to injury, the Cardinals are playing the Pirates today so the Cubs won’t have a chance to gain any ground. On Friday, the Crosstown Classic is set to begin and with the Pirates/Cardinals series continuing, there’s some ample opportunity for the Cubs to defeat the wishy washy White Sox and hopefully move up in the standings.
Hey, what do you think of Kris Bryant and Anthony Rizzo in the Home Run Derby? Geez, I don’t know who to cheer for?