May 11, 2013 by Ryan S
Edwin Jackson (almost) pitched his first quality start in May, the bats were alive and the bullpen did its thing vs. the Washington Nationals (20-16) as the Cubs (14-22) pounded their way to an eight to two win in Washington.
A day after hitting seven doubles and only managing to put up three runs, the Cubs collect 12 hits, six doubles and put up eight runs on the road to even the series at one game a piece heading into Sunday’s series finale.
Jackson (1-5) went 5.1 innings and only allowed two earned runs on four hits and two walks in what was most certainly his best start of the season. His ERA is still a disgusting 6.02, his WHIP is 1.569 and he’s only got two quality starts out of his eight total starts, but hopefully this is the beginning of a string of decent outings for him. Everybody wants him to get on track as soon as possible.
As for the bats, the Cubs were a fantastic 7-for-14 with one sacrifice bunt with runners in scoring position, putting up four in the fifth and sixth innings each. The first four came off of Stephen Strasburg (1-5), though quite disappointingly none of them were earned runs. Still, the Cubbies put up four on Strasburg in five innings and gave him a loss. I’ll take it.
Anthony Rizzo knocked in a couple on a 3-for-5 and his batting average is all the way up to 0.288 now. Remember when everyone was worried? No problem anymore. He’s hitting the cover off the ball lately. On an unfortunate note, Luis Valbuena jammed his pinky and was removed in favor of Cody Ransom in this one, and he’s day-to-day. He likely won’t start tomorrow, but may be available from the bench.
Darwin Barney went 1-for-3 and drew a walk, which I would call a step in the right direction given his struggles early this year. He’s hitting a mere 0.160, but I continue to have faith that he can turn it around this season. And honestly, nobody is taking that job from him (yet). The Cubs do not have any suitable replacements right now.
Again, the bullpen was great, as Shawn Camp and Hector Rondon combined for 3.2 innings pitched and allowed just two hits while striking out four. And shockingly, Carlos Marmol has not pitched since May 7. Maybe Sveum took my advice? I mean, that is the day I wrote that article. I’m not taking credit, I’m just saying I’m a genius.
The Cubs face off against the Nats for the rubber match tomorrow at 2:05 PM/EST. There will be a recap there, a series preview for the upcoming stretch against the Rockies, some ramblings, and as always, go Cubs!