The third Division Series matchup is set, and it’s yet another intradivision series. This time? The NL East.
The Marlins will go to Minute Maid Park and play the Atlanta Braves in Houston. The Cubs hype was once again full throttle, despite the teams inherent flaws. Since winning the 2016 World Series, the Cubs trio of Baez, Bryant and Rizzo have hit a combined .143 in postseason play. The team scored a total of one run in the two games, a fifth inning solo homerun in Game 1.
After that 1-0 lead, they never had a lead again as the Marlins put up a 7th inning crooked number with a Corey Dickerson three run homerun, followed by Jesus Aguilar’s two run homerun.
Yesterday’s game was rained out, but today’s had some drama. Yu Darvish was scintillating. Sixto Sanchez hurled five scoreless and was followed in relief by former All-Star Brad Boxberger, Richard Bleier, Yimi Garcia and Brandon Kinztler.
With the Cubs threatening early, it was Matt Joyce going full outlaw.
In the 7th, Garrett Cooper broke the tie.
Matt Joyce followed it with a double, was lifted for a pinch runner and Lewis Brinson scored on a basehit. In the 8th, Willson Contreras leaned into a pitch and got called back, then plunked for real. The Marlins worked around it but temper’s flared.
In the bottom of the 9th, Jason Heyward led off with a ringing double against All-Star closer Brandon Kintzler. He then struck out Javier Baez and punched out David Bote looking. Jason Kipnis pinched for Cubs closer Jeremy Jeffress and struck out on a 2-2 sinker.
The Marlins as a franchise, who lost 105 games in 2019, still have yet to lose a postseason series. They also have fond memories of Wrigley Field, just ask Tigers superstar Miguel Cabrera.
The Marlins lost a game to the Braves 29-9 this year, but saw them a lot in September, with the Braves going 4-1 against them.
For the Cubs, this is a third disappointing season after blowing a division lead in 2018, losing at home in both the game 163 against Milwaukee and wild card game against Colorado. Last year, they field to make the playoffs altogether. This is the third straight year Chicago did not advance to the Division Series, despite being a World Series favorite heading into the year.
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