OSS: Cubs clinch playoff spot, hang on to a razor-thin half game lead, cause everyone to tear their hair out.
- The bats finally woke up, courtesy of a first inning opposite field home run by Jason Heyward.
- Despite the first inning home run, Quintana had a solid start. He struck out four with no walks in five innings, allowing two solo HRs. Two runs in five innings is pretty much a quality start these days I guess. He was pinch hit for in the bottom of the fifth after only 74 pitches with a five run lead, but the Cubs bullpen is completely reliable so no big deal I guess. What a luxury.
- Albert Almora, who has gone from a guy for whom the knives came out when he wasn’t in the lineup earlier in the season to the last guy you want to see off the bench came through with the walkoff in the tenth.
- By Grabthar’s hammer, this fucking bullpen. No one could throw a strike in today’s admittedly tight zone and the Pirates stormed their way back in the last two innings against Edwards, Cishek, and Wilson. At least Jesse Chavez is good. The Cubs will just need him to pitch 3-4 innings in every playoff game.
- Caratini, in the lineup for the ice cold Willson Contreras, went 0-4, including a groundout with one out and Terrence Gore on second base. It was the Cubs biggest negative WPA play of the day. This followed a WTF move of Mike Freeman sac bunting Gore over to second.
- The Cubs had the bases clogged with no one out in the third inning, and while they came away with two runs it was on a sac fly and a bases loaded walk. They left some runs on the table that they sure could have used.
Next up: Lester and the Cubs take on the red-hot Trevor Williams at 7:05 PM CT.