Cubs out-slug Cardinals to take commanding control of NLDS


Cubs out-slug Cardinals to take commanding control of NLDS

Jake Arrieta was on the mound, so one run was good enough for the Cubs, right?

Of course, things didn't play out that way, and Game 3 of the National League Divison Series turned into something of a slugfest with the win blowing out at 17 mph at Wrigley Field.

The Cubs came away winners over the Cardinals in a hard-fought, 8-6 ballgame in front of 42,411 fans, playing the first playoff game on Chicago's North Side since 2008.

Arrieta failed to rack up a quality start for the first time since June 16, allowing four runs on five hits and two walks in 5 2/3 innings. He struck out nine but exited the game after hitting Brandon Moss on the toe with his 97th pitch.

[MORE CUBS: Jake Arrieta is human against Cardinals, but Cubs are that good]

"Big time [team win]," Anthony Rizzo said. "[Arrieta] going and competing like he did, us just keep scoring runs, the bullpen coming in and doing their job. It's a good overall win for sure."

Luckily for the Cubs, the offense bailed him out, with a homer coming from each of the top six spots in the batting order (Dexter Fowler, Jorge Soler, Kris Bryant, Rizzo, Starlin Castro, Kyle Schwarber).

It was the most homers the Cubs have ever hit in a playoff game as well as a major league playoff record, topping the five hit in Game 1 of the 1984 NLCS.

"Pretty impressive," Cubs manager Joe Maddon said. "I know the wind was blowing out - we'll conecede that - but most of them were properly struck. We are definitely capable of that."

A collection of relievers — Clayton Richard, Trevor Cahill, Travis Wood, Pedro Strop, Hector Rondon — shut down the Cardinals to close out the win for Arrieta, allowing just a two-run homer to Stephen Piscotty with two outs in the ninth.

[MORE CUBS: Joe Maddon's playoff vision for Cubs comes to life at Wrigley]

"That was a fun game," Rizzo said. "We would hit home runs, they would come back and tie it. It was a seesaw game.

"Probably the best [game] I've been a part of, especially against those guys. They don't let up."

The Cubs will send out Jason Hammel on Tuesday with a chance to eliminate the Cardinals in Game 4 at Wrigley Field.

Report: Young girl struck by foul ball in Houston suffered fractured skull, seizures

Report: Young girl struck by foul ball in Houston suffered fractured skull, seizures

The young girl who was hit by a foul ball during the Astros-Cubs game last month suffered a skull fracture from the incident, according to the family's attorney.

Additionally, the girl also suffered subdural bleeding, brain contusions and brain edema. She also had a seizure and is currently on medication to prevent more, according to the attorney's office. 

The incident made national headlines back in late May, when a foul ball off the bat of Cubs' outfielder Albert Almora Jr. struck a small girl who was sitting on the third base side. 

"That's probably what sucked the most," Almora said after the game. "It's just the way life is. As soon as I hit it, the first person I locked eyes on was her.

"The rest was kind of a blur, the rest of that at-bat. I kind of came to my senses the next half inning when I went over to the stands."

Since then, several teams have committed to extending the protective netting all the way to the foul poles, with some as soon as this season. 

2019 MLB Power Rankings: It's almost time to get mad about All-Star snubs!

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2019 MLB Power Rankings: It's almost time to get mad about All-Star snubs!

It's almost exactly halfway through the season, and if you've been following these rankings, you'll know the tiers have been set for some time now. As the All-Star break gets closer, it's the middle of the pack that has a big couple of weeks coming up. Looking at you, Pittsburgh or St. Louis or Cleveland or Texas or Oakland or Philly. Make something happen, or suffer the ultimate fate: falling an arbitrary number of spots in a MLB Power Ranking slideshow you're certainly not clicking through. There is no worse punishment. 

Want to see where your very good or very bad or maybe in the middle team ended up this week? To the rankings!