The Cubs brief trip east began with a dud. The team certainly caught some breaks along the way to a five-game winning streak heading into this game. But they also received some terrific pitching and a little timely hitting. They got none of that in this one, really. When things are going good, it’s a little harder to get frustrated by the random no show. Here, it was a little more frustrating. The Cubs will face the three best starters from the first-place Mets over the next three days. This first game looked like the safest bet for a win. So losing it isn’t a great omen of things to come.
But, baseball doesn’t paint by numbers all that often. I’m not going to be surprised if the Cubs turn around and win a couple of these next three games. The team is certainly good enough to have a puncher’s chance against any team in the National League. They’ve already proven that with a three game sweep of the Dodgers and by taking five of six in two series against the Padres. Those two teams on paper figure to be the two best teams in the league. That’s not to mention that the Cubs already swept this Mets team back in April.
Fun fact: The Cubs have played 12 different teams this year. Only four have a winning record against them. Those are the Braves, Giants, Brewers and Cleveland. Two first-place teams, a second-place team and one team that is struggling to find its footing but has been a contender consistently in recent years. Even one win in this set against New York will lock the season series victory for the Cubs. I’m betting that get at least one and still think they might get two.
As for the game itself? Not a lot to talk about. The Cubs only managed three hits. Two of them were back-to-back homers. So, most of the other eight innings were a real slog to get through. For a long time my signature read “sometimes you have to tip your hat to the other guy and move on.” This game felt like that. Certainly, Mets starter David Peterson had struggled mightily this year. But also, his ERA is just a touch over 3.00 at home this year. Some pitchers really thrive in their home environment, just the same way some hitters do. Frustrating, to be sure. But I’m just gonna tear the page off the calendar and move along to the next one.
With that, we turn our attention to the numbers. As you’ll recall, the Heroes and Goats are determined by WPA (Win Probability Added) and are not in any way subjective. Many days WPA will not tell the story of what happened, but often it can give at least a glimpse to who rose to the occasion in a high-leverage moment or who didn’t get the job done in that moment. And now, let’s get to the results.
Game 66, June 14: Mets 5, Cubs 2 (38-28)
- Superhero: Patrick Wisdom (.052). 1-2, HR (9), BB, RBI, R, K
- Hero: Trevor Megill (.008). ⅓IP (1 batter faced), 0H, 0BB, 0R, 0K
- Sidekick: Rex Brothers/Dillon Maples (.005). Brothers: IP (5 batters faced), 0H, 2BB, 0R, K; Maples IP (3 batters faced), 0H, 0BB, 0R, 0K
- Billy Goat: Jake Arrieta (-.189). 5IP (22 batters faced), 4H, 4BB, 4R, 3K (L 5-7)
- Goat: Jake Marisnick (-.103). 0-3, K
- Kid: Willson Contreras (-.075). 0-4, 2K
WPA Play of the Game: With two outs and runners at second and third in the fourth inning, the Mets were leading 1-0. Kevin Pillar stepped to the plate against Jake Arrieta. He hit a double, driving in two. (.166)
*Cubs Play of the Game: Patrick Wisdom drew a walk leading off the second inning in a scoreless game. (.039)
Who was the Cubs Player of the Game?
This poll is closed
Anthony Rizzo (1-4, HR)
Heroes and Goats Cumulative Standings: (Top 3/Bottom 3)
- Craig Kimbrel +17.5
- Kris Bryant +16
- Patrick Wisdom +14
- David Bote/Eric Sogard/PJ Higgins -9.5
- Javier Baez -10
Up Next: Game two of the four-game set is Tuesday night in New York. The Cubs will send Alec Mills to the mound for just his second start of the season. In the other, he threw four innings, allowing two runs against the Brewers back in an April start. He’s got a 6.08 ERA on the season in relatively limited work. The Mets counter with Taijuan Walker. Walker is 5-2 with a 2.07 ERA. Over his last six starts, the numbers are even better. He has a 1.32 ERA in that span. This is not a great matchup on paper. Let’s hope the Cubs can flip the script from one day to the next.