With Chipper on the DL, Yunel Escobar played third base and was the hero of the hour, though it was only the Cubs. Escobar was in the middle of a three-run fourth inning and later drove in the go-ahead run in the eighth, and also played nice defense. He went 2-4, getting a hit in his first major league AB, and probably should have been 2-3 but they called a sac bunt an out and an error instead.
The game was scoreless through three, Escobar the only Braves baserunner and erased on a double play. Prado, in the lineup because KJ has a cold and Bobby treats him like a porcelain figurine,
singled walked. Escobar bunted, the pitcher fielded it and threw to second instead of first, hitting Prado in the face, everyone was safe and Prado relatively unscathed. Renteria doubled him home, then Andruw brought in the next run with a groundout. Francoeur struck out, but Diaz singled Renteria home to make it 3-0.
Alfonso Soriano homered to make it 3-1 in the fifth. James gave up a two-out double to the pitcher in the sixth to make it 3-2, but the pitcher was thrown out at third. Unfortunately, Kali was the first reliever and he screwed up. With two out and a runner on first, ahead in the count 1-2, he for some reason tried a pickoff, throwing the ball into right field to put the runner in scoring position. Prado botched a grounder to bring the tying run home.
Thorman walked to lead off the eighth, and Woodward pinch-bunted him to second. Prado popped out, but Escobar doubled him home to make it 4-3. The Cubs got a leadoff double off of Soriano in the bottom of the inning, but the baserunner tried to get to third on a ball that didn’t roll nearly far enough away from Saltalamacchia and was out by a mile. Piniella went Wellman on the umpire and was ejected, then those wonderful, adorable, huggable Cubs fans threw trash on the field and the game was delayed as the Braves had to go to the clubhouse. Soriano got the next two guys.
Andruw homered to lead off the ninth to make it 5-3. The Cubs got a one-out single from Soriano but Wickman got Derrek Lee on a grounder to end it.
The Cubs outhit the Braves 9-6 and drew four walks to the Braves’ two. But they played poorly defensively, again, and made several boneheaded plays I described above. That’s no excuse for endangering players or acting like an imbecile… Kali got a completely undeserved win out of his blown save.