Cubs keep playing into the 2016 comparisons
Stop me if you’ve heard this one before:
It was a Wednesday night in Cleveland and Kyle Hendricks was on the mound…
The Cubs played right into the 2016 comparisons Wednesday night as they continued their torrid start to the 2020 season with a 7-2 win over the Indians.
The way the Cubs have started this shortened campaign has everybody within the organization believing they can accomplish something special this fall and this quick series in Cleveland only furthered that conviction.
Entering the 2-game set, the Indians had yet to give up more than 4 runs to an opponent all season and the Cubs were coming off an impromptu weekend off and faced questions about potential rust.
Neither of those storylines played out, as the Cubs did what they’ve done all season: They got great starting pitching, played good defense, wore down the opposing starter and then opened the floodgates in the late innings.
The end result is a 12-3 Cubs record, the best winning percentage in Major League Baseball a quarter of the way into the season.
“We knew we were coming here against a team that was playing pretty good and a good pitching staff,” David Ross said. “These guys prepared and took the down time seriously. We got good rest. Luckily, it wasn’t too long of a down time and you saw the great at-bats, even with the relievers coming in. Man, you look up and these guys are throwing 20, 30 pitches.
“Our guys [have] just phenomenal work, phenomenal concentration, effort, energy. It’s a pleasure to come to work every day with this group.”
Anthony Rizzo and Kris Bryant homered, Jason Heyward added 2 more RBI, Hendricks filled up the strike zone and the Cubs got more incredible production from the bottom of the batting order. The lineup drew 9 walks and forced the Indians staff to throw 191 pitches on the evening.
Rizzo’s homer came after he wore a pair of big gold chains around his neck for the game. So a new nickname — “Tony Two Chains” — was born and maybe a new good luck charm at the same time…
“Those things are heavy!” Ross said. “I don’t even know if I could hold those around my neck. Whatever works. This is baseball, we’ll do anything for knocks. Nice game for Rizz tonight. All the way up and down the lineup.
“J-Hey had a really good series, that last double was a big extra run for us. Up and down the lineup has been really good — I don’t want to single anybody out. KB — big homer. Yeah, good series, good jewelry for Rizz.”
The Cubs begin a 10-game homestand Thursday night as they welcome the Milwaukee Brewers into town.