Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Cubs Losing Streak Hits Seven Games

The Cubs pitching wilts again like wet ivy in this Wrigley-based series, punctuated by a duel between the Niekro brothers. Atlanta moves to 7-4 while the Cubs drop to 3-9 and have lost seven in a row.

Game 1: ATL 13, Cubs 5
W: P. Niekro (2-1)
L: J. Niekro (1-2)

Little bro' Joe was winning the battle of the Niekros, 5-3, going into the seventh. Then, Mrs. O'Leary's barn door opened to a barrage of Atlanta hits.  It didn't end until the Braves had scalped the Cubs for 18 hits and 13 runs, accented by two home runs by Hammerin' Hank Aaron (4, 5). Even Phil Niekro took the cue and hit his first homer, not off his sibling Joe but off Bill Stoneman in the ninth.

Game 2:  ATL 8, Cubs 4 (10 innings)
W: Britton (1-1)
L: Regan (0-1)

 Fergie Jenkins had 10 Ks but it wasn't enough.
In this game, the Cubs' supposed two best pitchers disappointed. Young 24-year-old ace Fergie Jenkins was masterful with 10 Ks and a shutout through seven. But he was tapped for four in the eighth to tie the game 4-4. Then, normally solid reliever Phil Regan, fresh off the DL to start the season, gave up four more in the 10th, after a two-out throwing error by Glenn Beckert opened the gates. Hank's little bro' Tommie Aaron hit a dramatic three-run shot to ice it.

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