Strasburg Stifles Cubs Offense
This game was a battle for two N.L titans both leading there own respective divisions. Strasburg would take the mound for the Nationals and the Cubs would oppose him with up and coming rookie Brailyn Marquez. Strasburg would come into the game struggling a bit allowing 4 runs in each of his last 3 starts while not being able to work past 4 innings in the last three. That however wouldn't be the case in this game as he was craving up Cubs batters and sitting them down striking out 10 over 6 innings of work. Strasburg would only allow just 4 hits and 1 run. On the opposite side of the ball Marquez came into the game after suffering his first MLB loss last time out. Marquez pitched very well despite the end result of the game and would suffer his second career loss. He pitched 7 strong innings giving up 9 hits, 2 runs, and striking out 6.
The action got started right away in the bottom of the first inning as Mallex Smith would lead off the game with a double. One batter later Anthony Rizzo would hit a ground ball back up the middle for a single and Smith would score on the play opening the Cubs to a 1-0 lead. That would be all the action Strasburg would allow as the cubs would only manage 2 more hits over the next 5 innings as Strasburg really found his grove. In the third inning Marquez was looking good having already struck out 4 batters and then gave up a ground ball single to Castro. Marquez would get the next batter to strike out and then Strasburg would bunt Castro to second. Trea Turner would come to the plate with 2 outs and needing at least a single to the outfield to score the tying run from second, and that is just what he would do much like Rizzo in the first Turner hit the ball back up the middle scoring Castro. Move forward to the top of the sixth as Marquez would leave a hanging slurve to Thames and he would make him pay sending it into the bleachers in right pushing the Nationals out front 2-1. the would tack on one more in the top of the 8th, but the Cubs wouldn't go quietly. As they would get a run back in the bottom of the 8th thanks to a double by pinch hitter Nico Hoerner and a single none other than Anthony Rizzo again. The Nationals would turn to Sean Doolittle in the bottom of the 9th to wrap it up, but it wouldn't happen as planned. The Cubs would start the inning with 2 straight single to Doolittle and had runners at 1st and 3rd with noone out. Doolittle would silence whatever rally the Cubs had going and struck out the next 3 batters. The Nationals would send the Wrigley faithful home unhappy with a final score of 3-2 taking game one of a three game weekend set.
David Ross had this to say about his teams performance "our pitching and defense was our lone bright spots today and really kept us in the the game till the last out. We really have to figure out how to stop from going hot and cold so quickly offensively and work pitch counts a lot better. One thing i noticed out there was the amount of pitches we were chasing, which i will discuss with Anthony Iapoce about later."
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