Luke Farrell is from a baseball family. His father John managed the Red Sox and Blue Jays. His two brothers both have worked in the Cubs organization within the last few years.
And Luke was acquired on waivers from the Reds just after the 2017 season ended. He began the 2018 season at Triple-A Iowa and was first called up when Eddie Butler went on the disabled list in late April. Returned to Iowa a couple of weeks later, Farrell was called up again when Justin Hancock was sent down on May 28.
A few days later, the Cubs and Mets were meeting in the third of a four-game series at Citi Field. The Cubs had won the first two games and had fought to a deadlock against Mets ace Jacob deGrom. Anthony Rizzo singled in a run in the top of the sixth, but Michael Conforto homered off Mike Montgomery in the bottom of the inning to tie the game.
deGrom was mowing down Cubs — he struck out 13 in seven innings. But Cubs relievers Cory Mazzoni and Justin Wilson held the Mets down and the game went to extras.
Farrell had begun his relief stint in the bottom of the ninth inning. And he had one of the best relief outings for any Cub in recent years.
Farrell threw five shutout innings, allowing just two hits and two walks while striking out seven. In the 13th, running out of gas, Farrell loaded the bases with a single and a pair of walks (one intentional). But then he got Kevin Plawecki on a grounder to short [VIDEO] to end the inning.
The Cubs exploded for six runs in the 14th. Albert Almora Jr. and Ben Zobrist had RBI doubles and Javier Baez smashed a two-run homer to complete the scoring [VIDEO] as the Cubs won the game 7-1.
That one led to this fun fact:
Javier Báez already has 5 career extra-inning HR— Christopher Kamka (@ckamka) June 3, 2018
12th, 13th, 14th, 14th & 15th innings
Ryne Sandberg had 3 in his career (all in 10th inning)#Cubs
For Luke Farrell, this was the best outing of his career. The Cubs let him go on waivers to the Angels at the end of the 2018 season, but in early 2019 he was claimed by the Rangers, also on waivers. During spring training 2019, he was hit in the face by a line drive, forcing him to have his jaw wired shut. Working his way back, he appeared in nine games (one start) for the Rangers in 2019 and was expected to be part of their bullpen in 2020.
I certainly wish him well going forward, and will always remember that June 2018 game at Citi Field.