Now I’m not the oldest of Cub fans, but in all my years as a Cubs fan I cannot remember a homestand of this length where the Cubs won them all. (Editor’s Note: It last happened in 1970). Coming off two tough extra inning losses the week before in Pittsburgh, the Cubs played well in sweeping the Dodgers and then took it to the reeling Rockies. Now they take their 7-game win streak with them to the West Coast for 3 against the Padres and 4 against those same Dogers. 23 of the Cubs’ next 32 games are on the road (although 3 of those are on the Southside), so this will be an important stretch for the team with the best record in baseball. Now I’m not trying to get ahead of myself, but the last time the Cubs had the best record in baseball on June 1st was the year 1908. Just makes me excited all over to think about that.
Today’s game saw Derrek Lee get his first full day off in 2008, and Micah Hoffpauir started in his place, both at 1st base and at the 3 spot in the order. I found it interesting that Lou didn’t take Lee’s absence as a chance to try a new lineup, but if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. It was a close game all around, with the Cubs getting contributions from nearly every man on the roster in this one. As much as it pains me to say it, Jim Edmonds is improving at the plate, coming up with a big RBI double in the 4th and an even bigger bases loaded walk in the 5th. After loading the bases with none out, Rockies starter Ubaldo Jimenez struck out Fukudome and Soto, before issuing the run-scoring walk to Jimmy. Watching Kosuke and Geo strike out from up in Section 421 made me feel like I was watching the Cubs of old, but we were able to come through with 2 outs thanks to the good eye of Edmonds. And just for good measure, Soriano blasted a hanging Manny Corpas breaking ball onto Waveland to make sure the Cubs completed the sweep.
On the other side of the ball, Sean Gallagher appears to have sewn up the 5th spot in the rotation. He looked masterful at times, striking out 8 (including 4 in the first 2 innings), but was a bit wild at times, hitting 2 batters. He left after 5 2/3, and the bullpen shakily took it from there, with only an inherited run scoring off of Michael Wuertz in the 6th. KWood looked good in the 9th, and even though he got to a couple of 3-ball counts and nearly hit ANOTHER batter, he got the job done 1-2-3.