Bullpen Blows Late Lead, Nats Take The Series
Coming into today's game the Cubs found themselves just 6-4 of their last 10 games. they have won 2 out of 3 past series in hope of taking this rubber match and winning the series. The Cubs would look to ace Yu Darvish to be the ace they had paid for in hopes of winning the series.
With Darvish on the mound the didn't know what exactly they would be getting as the start to the 2020 season for Darvish has been up and down. It was all up for Darvish in this game though as he would mow through the Nationals line up through the first 6 innings of work. The Cubs would open up the scoring in the bottom of the 4th as red hot Anthony Rizzo took a low curve ball to dead center for a solo shot. Anibal Sanchez was looking good in his own right and put in a qualifying start throwing 6 innings giving up 7 hits, 3 runs, and striking out 5. The Cubs would pad their lead with a 2 run shot by Kyle Schwarber in the bottom of the 6th. Sanchez would recover and record the final out in the 6th, but that would be the end of the line for him as manager Dave Martinez would opp to pinch hit for him in the top of the 7th. In the top of the 7th things went a little south for the Cubs as Darvish would get the first out but then allow the first run of the game for the Nationals on back to back doubles. This would cause for Ross to come out and take the ball from Darvish who got a stand ovation. Ryan Tepera who has been very impressive out of the pin would enter in relief. Tepera would walk Juan Soto on a very close pitch bring up Eric Thames who has been killing the Cubs all series. Tepera would go down 3 balls and 1 strike to Thames, then hang a cutter over the heart of the plate that Thames absolutely crushed to put the Nationals ahead 4-3 ruining Darvish so well pitched game. Going into the bottom of the 9th the Cubs looked poised to mount a come back with 3,4,5 due up. This would not be the case as all 3 men flew out deep to the outfield in each at bat giving Sean Doolittle his 13th save of the season.
After the game reporters caught up with Darvish and his translator and had this to say "it's always tough to lose such a close game, but even harder when you have a lead late in the game. this isn't just on (Tepera) one person it could of happen to anyone myself included had Ross left me in." They also got a word from Ross as well, "it's part of baseball you can't predict what reliever will get you through a game. If we could than why would you even play the game?" He also had this to say on why he elected to take a sharp looking Darvish out. "He was at 105 pitches and was starting to miss some spots so i felt it was the right time."
The Cubs will wrap up the 6 game home stand with a 3 game set against division rivals the Brewers who are tied for first with the Cubs. This will definitely be a interesting series.
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