Sunday, September 8, 2013
Rapid Reaction: Brewers 3, Cubs 1
By Sahadev Sharma, Special to ESPNChicago.com
Special to ESPNChicago.com
CHICAGO -- Here's a quick look at the Chicago Cubs' 3-1 loss to the Milwaukee Brewers on Sunday at Wrigley Field:
How it happened: Scott Baker tossed five shutout innings in his first start in almost two years. Junior Lake's solo home run in the bottom of the fifth gave the Cubs a 1-0 lead and Baker an opportunity for a well-earned victory. However, Chicago's bullpen couldn't hold the slim lead, as Justin Grimm and James Russell combined to allow three runs in the seventh. Yovani Gallardo allowed only one run on three hits in seven innings, striking out six and walking just one, to lead the Brewers to victory.
What it means: Baker's sinker sat at 87-89 mph, slightly up from what reports had him throwing during his rehab outings. The Cubs gave a $5.5 million contract to Baker in the offseason, and while they won't get full value on that investments this season, they'll possibly have a few September starts to evaluate and determine whether bringing him back next year at a reduced rate would be worth their while. Baker passed his first audition on Sunday and possibly earned himself another start.
Outside the box: With two hits on the day, Lake has 58 since the All-Star break. That total is the most of any rookie in all of baseball.
Up next: Travis Wood (8-11, 3.17) toes the rubber for the Cubs as they open up a three game set in Cincinnati against the Reds. Bronson Arroyo (13-10, 3.62) takes the mound for Cincinnati at Great American Ballpark on Monday at 6:10 p.m.