August 30th, 2012
Alex was joining me for Wednesday’s game and I got off the L at 5:45 PM. This is was my view as I exited the train, before leaving the platform:
I met Alex at O’Malley’s and we had a beer before heading across the street and into Wrigley. Our tickets were in the upper deck and the conditions seemed right to get game photo number 129 from behind home plate.
We walked around and went out on the patio behind home plate in the upper deck. This was taken looking down Clark street towards the loop.
The deep dish pizza looked good so we each got a slice of sausage pizza and an Old Style. We went to our seats and ate while waiting for the game to start. The pizza was very good, and I can’t remember the last time I had deep dish pizza (before Wednesday).
Jeff Samardzija got the game started by throwing a called strike to Aoki. This was the view from our seats in section 524:
Aoki doubled on the 2-2 pitch and did his finger-mustache thing once he was safely at second. It looks like the umpire is saying: “Now wait just a minute! What does that mean!?!?” (Aoki had called time, thus the hands in the air)
Two batters later Braun singled and Aoki moved to third base. Aramis Ramirez grounded into a force out and just beat out the double play attempt, allowing Aoki to score the first run of the game.
The Cubs tied it in the bottom of the 2nd when Barney drove in LaHair with a groundout of his own. The game remained tied as it entered the 7th inning. Nyjer Morgan bunted for a base hit with one out and went to second on a throwing error by Samardzija. Segura singled home Morgan to give the Brewers a 2-1 lead.
With Aoki batting Segura tried stealing second base. The throw down to second was in the dirt and got by the shortstop and into shallow centerfield. Segura took off for third even though the second baseman had been backing up the play and had a great shot to get Segura at third. The third baseman, however, missed the catch from the second baseman and Segura was able to make it safely AND head home to give the Crew a 2-run cushion. Here he is as he starts his slide home. There must have been some Brewers fans in the upper deck (hands in the air) or some upset Cubs fans saying “hogwash!” at the two-error play.
In the middle of the 8th we left the upper deck and started making our way towards an exit. We watched the bottom of the 8th from the walkway behind the 200 level seating and then the top and bottom of the 9th from section 236 (I think). Axford came on for the save but walked the first batter he faced. Here he is about to pitch to Castro:
Axford struck out Castro and induced a Soriano ground ball that should’ve been a double play to end the game. Segura flipped to Weeks who made the turn at second base.
The throw was a little off target but Hart didn’t have to stretch too far to try and reel it in. It bounced off of Hart’s glove and Soriano was able to advance all the way to third base. Thankfully LaHair grounded out to Segura to end the game and the missed catch error didn’t come back to haunt them. Final Score: Brewers 3 – Cubs 1. Fiers pitched well once again, going 7 and 1/3 innings, giving up 4 hits, 1 walk, and 1 run while striking out 6. The streak of games with the pitching staff striking out at least 10 batters came to an end, after the 7 K performance on Wednesday. Apparently I shouldn’t have mentioned it during Tuesday’s post. It’s all my fault… (right).
Thursday’s game is a 1:20 start and I’ll be leaving in about 11 hours. Adam McCalvy (the Brewers beat writer) told me that he talked to Bob Brenly and Len Kasper, the Cubs TV announcers. He said I might get an interview during the game tomorrow, we shall see. Either way: thank you Adam for pitching my mission to them, it’s greatly appreciated!
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