#954 San Francisco Giantsvs.#953 Chicago Cubs
Written by Chris Kubala
MLB: Tuesday, October 11, 2016, AT&T Park, San Francisco, California, 8:30 pm ET
Lines: San Francisco +111, Chicago -121; Over/Under: 7.5
The other National League Division Series continues in the City by the Bay. The Chicago Cubs look to eliminate the San Francisco Giants in Game 4 of their best of five set Tuesday night. Chicago took Game 1 of the series 1-0 Friday night and followed that up with a 5-2 triumph Saturday night. The Giants, with their backs to the wall, clawed out a 6-5, 13 inning win in Game 3 to keep their season alive.
Chicago held a 3-2 lead into the eighth inning before their bullpen imploded. It took four pitchers to get out of the frame, by which time the Giants led 5-3. Kris Bryant (three hits, run, two RBI) hit a game-tying two run shot in the ninth to send the game to extras but the Cubs couldn’t score again. Javier Baez (run) had two hits for Chicago while Jake Arrieta had a three run homer in the second inning. That made the Cubs the first time since 1924 to have two pitchers homer in the same postseason. Arrieta threw six innings, allowing two runs on six hits with a walk and five strikeouts. Mike Montgomery, the Cubs’ sixth reliever of the night, took the loss and is 0-1. He allowed a run on four hits with a walk and a strikeout over four plus innings.
John Lackey gets the call for Chicago for his 30th start of the year and first of the postseason. He is 11-8 with a 3.35 ERA and a 1.057 WHIP with 180 strikeouts over 188.1 innings. He is 4-1 in his last nine starts dating back to late July. Lackey picked up the win in his last start, which came against the Pirates September 27. He allowed one run on five hits with three walks and three strikeouts over five innings. The Cubs won the game by a 6-4 score. Lackey makes his fourth career start against the Giants. He is 1-1 with a 2.37 ERA and a 1.00 WHIP over 19 innings. Lackey is 1-1 with a 2.57 ERA and a 1.214 WHIP over 14 innings in two starts at AT&T Park.
San Francisco stared a one run deficit in the eighth inning before pulling some magic out of a hat. After allowing the tying runs in the ninth, they scrapped and clawed until Joe Panik’s (three hits, RBI) run scoring single in the 13th plated Brandon Crawford (two hits, run, RBI) with the winning run. Buster Posey (run, RBI) had three hits while Denard Span (two runs) had two. Madison Bumgarner took a no-decision in his start. He allowed three runs on seven hits with a walk and four strikeouts in five innings, throwing 101 pitches. Ty Blach (1-0) got the win in relief. He tossed two scoreless frames, allowing two hits with a strikeout. Blach induced David Ross to bounce into a double play with runners on first and second to end the top of the 13th inning.
Matt Moore is on the mound for his 34th start of the year and his 13th for the Giants. He came over from Tampa Bay at the trade deadline. Moore is 13-12 overall with a 4.08 ERA and a 1.291 WHIP while allowing 25 long balls in 198.1 innings. He has wins in six of his last eight starts. Moore picked up the win in his last start, which was Sunday against the Dodgers. He threw eight innings, allowing one run on three hits with two walks and six strikeouts. The Giants cruised to a 7-1 win. In his 109th appearance and 107th start, Moore faces the Cubs for the first time. He is 4-2 with a 3.16 ERA and a 1.189 WHIP over 37 innings in six starts at AT&T Park.
The Giants managed to live to fight another day but one has to wonder if that was the last gasp of a drained team. If Sergio Romo had closed the game out in the ninth, it might have left the Giants with a little more life. Instead, they had to exert more effort and energy to get the win. It was a gutty performance by both sides and you can guarantee that Joe Maddon won’t outmanage himself with the bullpen again. This one is another close game but the Cubs seem determined to make this the year. Chicago knocks the Giants out with a win in this one.
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Christopher Kubala has been crunching stats and following sports for over 30 years. His in depth analysis and passion for sports have led him to writing books about sports, regularly being featured on sports talk radio and as the go-to person for any obscure trivia. He keeps an eye on transactions and statistics like a hawk, especially when it comes to football, both the NFL and college, the NHL, the NBA and college basketball and MLB.