When the Arizona Diamondbacks took a 1-0 lead over the Cubs within their first three batters Saturday night, I thought to myself, "Welp. This game is over."
Turned out I was right until one out in the ninth inning, when Alfonso Soriano hit a two-run homer off D'backs starter Trevor Cahill, ruining his shutout bid. That blast also created this fact:
Soriano 1st player in #Cubs history to reach 107 RBIs at age of 36 or older— Carrie Muskat (@CarrieMuskat) September 30, 2012
The number 107 was simply for reference; Soriano's total is 108. The number he passed, 106, was accomplished by Ernie Banks in 1969 (age 38) and Moises Alou in 2004 (age 37). The two RBI also pulled Soriano to within four of the league lead, co-held by Ryan Braun and Chase Headley. With the season stumbling, tumbling, plunging, collapsing to a bad end, I'd like to see Soriano play every remaining game and maybe win the league RBI crown. It isn't much, but it's pretty much all we have.
And can we please have one more thing? My wish is to never again see Justin Germano in a Cubs uniform. He's just bad. 10 hits and seven earned runs in 4⅓ innings. 6.20 season ERA in 69⅔ innings. I know, I know. He was just a placeholder because someone had to start these games. I'm not even suggesting the Cubs had other choices (though that scratch-off-card idea couldn't have been much worse).
Germano is 30. I'm sure he's a good person who loves animals and is nice to his mother. But please, let his Chicago Cubs career be over.
Until Soriano's home run, the Cubs had been limited to three singles, one each from David DeJesus, Luis Valbuena and Brett Jackson, and three walks, one of which was to Anthony Rizzo just before the Soriano blast.
Give some credit to Cahill; he's a pretty good pitcher who's had a solid year for Arizona after he was acquired in the deal that sent Jarrod Parker (and others) to the Athletics this past offseason -- a deal that has helped Oakland to get very close to a playoff berth, and one that could help the D'backs in the future, as Cahill is just 24. These are the kinds of deals you hope TheoJed will make in the future -- if you have to give up young talent, you get good young talent in return.
99 losses makes this Cubs team the third-worst in team history, and they'll have to avoid extending this current losing streak to 11 to avoid tying the club record for defeats. Fortunately for the Cubs, they'll meet the Astros starting Monday after finishing their road schedule for 2012 Sunday in Phoenix, where I fully expect them to lose again, completing the 0-for they've been putting up this year in NL West parks. No team has ever lost all its road games to an entire division for a full season, but that's what we're looking at Sunday.
The game preview for this titanic clash will post at 1 p.m. CDT.