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2022 Cubs Heroes and Goats: Game 152

The Cubs come up empty in a 6-0 defeat.

Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Even when you are going good, clunkers happen. The Cubs had won eight of 11 coming in. But they never got anything going offensively in this one. The pitching wasn’t awful, but it wasn’t good either. An error made things worse than they might have been. Yet that error was made by Cubs starter Wade Miley, so not much consolation.

With a quick turnaround to a day game, and running at the end of the season, this is going to be a much shorter than usual Heroes and Goats. If it wasn’t for honor and duty, we’d just try to pretend this one didn’t happen and move along.

Three stars of the game? Whew. This one is going to be tough. There were only five hits and one walk offensively. All three Cubs pitchers who worked in the game had rough first innings. For Rowan Wick, that was his only inning.

I’m going with Esteban Quiroz for the top star of the game. He singled in the first while the outcome of the game was still very much in doubt.

Staying right along those lines, Ian Happ singled in the first (with Quiroz already on). If it feels like we are grasping for straws, you are definitely right.

It was 6-0 by the time Christopher Morel doubled, but that put runners on second and third and represented the best scoring opportunity of the day for the Cubs.

I’ll give an honorable mention to Adbert Alzolay who got off to a horrific start in the fifth, inhering two runners and allowing both of those and then three more to score. But he did retire the final seven batters he faced. Adbert might not yet be ready to pick up an unclean inning.

This is one ugly WPA game for the Cubs. A few years back we looked at what it might look like for everyone to finish negative in a game. This might have been the closest we’ve ever gotten to an all-negative occurrence.

Game 152, September 24: Pirates 6, Cubs 0 (66-86)


Reminder: Heroes and Goats are determined by WPA scores and are in no way subjective.


  • Superhero: Nelson Velazquez (.001). 0-0, BB
  • Hero: Rowan Wick (.000). IP (5 batters), H, BB, 2K
  • Sidekick: Esteban Quiroz (-.003). 1-4, K


  • Billy Goat: Adbert Alzolay (-.133). 3IP (13 batters), 3H, 3R, 3K, HBP
  • Goat: Zach McKinstry (-.067). 0-4, 3K
  • Kid: Yan Gomes (-.066). 0-4, 2K

WPA Play of the Game: Ji Hwan Bae doubled with runners on second and third with one out in the fifth. Those two runners were the ones Adbert Alzolay inherited when he came in. That made the score 3-0. (.104)

*Cubs Play of the Game: Wade Miley induced a double play grounder with a runner on first and no outs in the fourth. The score was 1-0 at the time. (.068)


Who was the Cubs Player of the Game?

This poll is closed

  • 10%
    Nelson Velazquez
    (4 votes)
  • 16%
    Rowan Wick
    (6 votes)
  • 29%
    Esteban Quiroz
    (11 votes)
  • 43%
    Someone else (leave your suggestion in the comments)
    (16 votes)
37 votes total Vote Now

Rizzo Award Cumulative Standings: (Top 5/Bottom 5)

The award is named for Anthony Rizzo, who finished first in this category three of the first four years it was in existence and four times overall. He also recorded the highest season total ever at +65.5. The point scale is three points for a Superhero down to negative three points for a Billy Goat.

  • David Robertson +22.5
  • Christopher Morel +18
  • Nico Hoerner +17.5
  • Scott Effross +17
  • Justin Steele/Willson Contreras/Drew Smyly +10
  • Frank Schwindel/Daniel Norris -9.5
  • Nelson Velazquez -11
  • Rafael Ortega -11.5
  • Yan Gomes -15
  • Jason Heyward -15.5

Up Next: The fourth and final game of this series. The Cubs aim for a series win and the Pirates look to split the series. The two teams have also split the first 18 games of the season series, so the winner takes the season series.

Adrian Sampson (2-5, 3.35) starts for the Cubs. Luis Ortiz (0-0, 0.84) starts for the Pirates. The 23-year-old will be making his third MLB start. He’s allowed two runs, one earned in 10⅔ innings of work so far.