Chicago Cubs sweep doubleheader from St. Louis Cardinals

By Jack McCarthy, The Sports Xchange  |  July 8, 2015 at 12:44 AM
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CHICAGO -- These are the kind of games the St. Louis Cardinals are used to winning.

Instead it was the Chicago Cubs who pounced on a Cardinals error in a three-run seventh inning rally on the way to a 5-3 victory on Tuesday night to wrap up a day-night doubleheader sweep.

"When you're able to take two games from a team like that anytime is good," said right-handed reliever Jason Motte, who closed out both games Tuesday and earned his fifth save in the finale. "Twice in one day -- especially the way we hung in there first game and came back the second game -- is definitely a confidence booster."

Combined with an earlier 7-4 victory, the Cubs claimed their first doubleheader sweep of the Cardinals since June 8, 1992, at St. Louis and first at Wrigley Field since 1991.

With the Cubs trailing 2-1 entering the seventh inning of the second game, second baseman Addison Russell's one-out single down the right field line drove in catcher Miguel Montero to tie the game and left pinch hitter Jonathan Herrera at third.

The Cardinals felt the ball was foul but the play was not reviewable.

"From my viewpoint I thought I was foul," Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina said.

The key play then came when center fielder Dexter Fowler bounced a grounder to Cardinals left-handed relief pitcher Kevin Siegrist, who tried to throw the ball to shortstop Jhonny Peralta to initiate a double play.

Instead, the ball went into center field.

Herrera scored the go-ahead run while Russell reached third.

"It's not something we have been accustomed to seeing, whether it's from our position players or from our pitchers," said Cardinals manager Mike Matheny. "We've been a very good defending team ... today was one of those days that was uncharacteristic."

First baseman Anthony Rizzo's sacrifice fly to center then scored Russell for the 4-2 lead.

Shortstop Starlin Castro's sacrifice fly in the eighth drove in right fielder Jorge Soler to extend the lead to 5-2.

"You get that extra run moving into the last inning, that last at bat, it makes it a little more difficult on them," Cubs manager Joe Maddon said.

The Cardinals scored once in the ninth off Motte as pinch hitter Tony Cruz singled home left fielder Randal Grichuk with one out to make it 5-3. But Motte then closed down the Cardinals.

Cubs left-hander Travis Wood (5-3) worked one inning in relief for the victory. Cardinals right-hander Seth Maness (3-1) pitched one inning and was ejected for arguing balls and strikes. He took the loss.

The Cardinals erased a 1-0 Cubs lead in the sixth. Right-handed starter Dallas Beeler departed with none out after giving up a walk to third baseman Matt Carpenter and a single to Peralta.

Carpenter, who advanced to third on the hit, tied the game when right fielder Jason Heyward grounded into a fielder's choice off left-handed reliever James Russell.

Russell promptly departed and right-hander Justin Grimm gave up an infield single to first baseman Mark Reynolds with two outs, allowing Heyward to score from third for a 2-1 St. Louis lead.

Beeler was credited with allowing two runs, while he gave up four hits, struck out six and walked two in five full innings.

"Tonight worked out well," Beeler said. "I had my stuff going with my fastball and I was really happy with it."

Cardinals starter Tim Cooney worked 5 1/3 innings, allowing one run on three hits while striking out three and walking one.

Beeler tried to help his cause with a third-inning lead-off double to the center-field wall on Cooney's first pitch. It was his first career two-base hit and the Cubs' first hit of the game.

But Beeler was tagged out while sliding into third on a subsequent fielder's choice grounder by Fowler.

Beeler worked out of a one-out, bases-loaded jam in the Cardinals' fourth. He struck out Reynolds and got first baseman Xavier Scruggs to ground to third on a fielder's choice and escaped unscathed.

The Cubs broke a scoreless tie in the fifth when Castro lined a leadoff double to the left-field wall and scored on catcher Taylor Teagarden's single to shallow right.

It was the first hit as a Cub for Teagarden, who was called up earlier this week from Triple-A Iowa.

In Tuesday's early game, Rizzo went 2-for-3 with his team-leading 16th home run to help lead the Cubs to the 7-4 victory.

Fowler, left fielder Chris Denorfia and even starting pitcher Jake Arrieta had two hits apiece. Arrieta (9-5) won for the fifth time in his past seven starts, allowing two runs on seven hits, striking out four and walking two.

"It's not easy to play those split doubleheaders, especially after a tough loss like the night before," Maddon said. "To bounce back is really tremendous. It's how high you bounce after the fall that really matters."

NOTES: Cardinals 2B Kolten Wong left Tuesday's first game in the seventh inning with a head contusion and sat out the start of the second game. ... The Game 1 loss left St. Louis 7-8 in the opening game of doubleheaders since 2000. ... The Cardinals send RHP Michael Wacha (10-3, 2.66 ERA) against Cubs RHP Jason Hammel (5-4, 2.89 ERA) in Wednesday's series finale. The teams won't meet again until Sept. 7-9 at Wrigley Field. ... Cubs OF Chris Coghlan didn't start in Tuesday's first game but still extended his consecutive appearance streak to 147 games -- the longest active streak in the majors -- with a pinch-hit appearances in both. ... Tuesday's first game was a makeup from an April 7 rainout.... After facing just four left-handed pitchers in the previous 46 games, the Cubs met a pair Tuesday (Tyler Lyons in the opener and Tim Cooney in the nightcap). They potentially could face three more before next week's All-Star break.

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