You kinda just knew it was going to happen, didn’t you? The Cubs moved into the late innings with a 5-4 lead. But Milwaukee has become a painful place for the Cubs to play. Right now, there is no lead the Cubs could carry that the Brewers wouldn’t think they could overcome. And overcome they did.
The good news, to the extent that there is good news, is that the Cubs are just playing out the string. Winning the game would have been nice. It’s fun to beat the Brewers. It is even more fun to beat them with the ghost of a team the Cubs have been fielding since the end of June. But it just wasn’t meant to be. No, I’m not just conceding the series as a sweep. But, very much like the series last weekend in Chicago against the Giants, I do recognize when this team is completely overmatched. Even the worst teams generally win some games from the best ones. Like for instance, closer to my new home, the Orioles (tied for the worst record in MLB) have won a game against the Rays (third best record). A game. The Rays won 18 of 19. That’s disgusting.
The Cubs are appreciably better than that. You know, 3-14 against the Brewers. Put differently, the Cubs are 3-14 against the Brewers and 63-68 against everyone else. The Brewers aren’t the whole reason the Cubs season is in the toilet, but they are an awful lot of the reason. Two completely different sports with their own math and consideration, but this echoes to me the Bears and Packers. If you want to be successful, you have got to figure out how to consistently beat a team that you play more than 10 percent of your games against.
To be fair in this one, though I pretty much figured the Cubs would lose late, Rowan Wick was on the mound when this game got away. I mean, it’s not Craig Kimbrel. Or even Andrew Chafin or Ryan Tepera. But, this is the guy you’d want on the mound with the game on the line for this Cubs team. Especially since Codi Heuer had already pitched. You want to go down with your best guys on the field. That’s the way it played out. At least you gave it your best shot.
Let’s go to the numbers. 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 148, September 17: Brewers 8, Cubs 5 (66-82)
- Superhero: Codi Heuer (.181). 1⅔ IP, 6 batters faced, 2BB, 2K
- Hero: Alfonso Rivas (.141). 2-3, RBI, R
- Sidekick: Trevor Megill (.109). IP, 3 batters faced, K
- Billy Goat: Rowan Wick (-.631). ⅔ IP, 7 batters faced, 3H, 2BB, 4R, 2K (L 0-1)
*This is the second worst WPA game by a Cub in 2021. (Contreras -.735 on May 5)
- Goat: Zach Davies (-.207). 4⅓ IP, 21 batters faced, 6H, 3BB, 4R, 3K
- Kid: Willson Contreras (-.130). 0-5, 4K
WPA Play of the Game: With runners on first and second and two outs in the eighth inning, the Cubs leading by one, Lorenzo Cain faced Rowan Wick. Cain singled to tie the game. (.320)
*Cubs Play of the Game: With the Cubs leading by one in the fourth inning, Cain faced Zach Davies with the bases loaded and two outs. Davies did surrender a line drive, but it found a glove and preserved the lead for the time being. (.196)
Who was the Cubs Player of the Game?
This poll is closed
Rizzo Award Cumulative Standings: (Top 3/Bottom 3)
- Frank Schwindel +29
- Kris Bryant +26
- Patrick Wisdom +22
- David Bote -13
- Jake Arrieta -19
- Zach Davies -22 (-2)
Up Next: Justin Steele (3-3, 4.17) starts for the Cubs Saturday night in the second game of the series. The Brewers will go with Corbin Burnes (10-4, 2.25 ERA).