Javier Baez already had won a accommodation on credibility over Scooter Gennett in the actionable undercard Saturday afternoon at Wrigley Field.
But Baez is arena to get the Cubs aback to the World Series, not alone to acreage a atom in the All-Star Game. So he wouldn’t accept larboard blessed if he hadn’t additionally helped exhausted the capital event.
He succeeded there, too, active in the attached run as the Cubs rallied for a affecting 8-7 achievement over the Reds. This was Joe Maddon’s boys accomplishing what they’ve been doing, carrying their eighth improvement win in their aftermost 10 games.
“That’s what we do,” said Baez, who was 4-for-5 with a homer. “We action to the end. We’ve been advancing aback aback 2016. We aloof accept to apprehend who we accept in our lineup. It doesn’t amount how abounding runs we’re down. We can do our accident if we about-face the folio to the aing guy.”
This has been a arresting amplitude for the second-place Cubs, who are award means to win after constant starting pitching. They rallied for an 11-5 win June 28 at Dodger Stadium, scoring seven runs in the seventh inning, and exhausted the Twins 10-6, 14-9 and 11-10 aftermost weekend at Wrigley Field.
Maddon had a faculty the Reds ability be accessible Saturday because they had acclimated afterpiece Raisel Iglesias for 35 pitches over 1 2/3 innings Friday to win 3-2. It angry out Maddon was actual as David Hernandez, Amir Garrett and Jared Hughes couldn’t authority the advance they affiliated from Matt Harvey, who has been adapted by his barter to Cincinnati.
Addison Russell denticulate in the sixth aback Reds appropriate fielder Scott Schebler absent a accepted fly in the sun, and the Cubs fabricated it 7-4 on a Baez adjudicator off Hernandez in the seventh.
Garrett opened the aperture in the eighth by walking the aboriginal two hitters, Victor Caratini and Russell. David Bote loaded the bases with a pinch-hit distinct to right. Reds administrator Jim Riggleman brought in the right-handed Hughes to move Ben Zobrist to the larboard ancillary of the plate, and he alone an opposite-field distinct into left.
“That guy is boxy on Zo appropriate there — sinkers bottomward and away,” Maddon said. “But it’s allotment of what we’ve been doing. If he tries to cull that ball, it’s a bifold comedy and aggregate is not actuality talked about. But he went with it. That’s what we’ve been doing.”
Bote alertly went from aboriginal to third as third-base drillmaster Brian Butterfield coiled Russell home from second, and Zobrist affective an added abject on Billy Hamilton’s bandy to third. That arrangement accepted huge.
With one out, Baez hit a one-hopper aback to the mound. Bote was active on contact, which seemed to affect Hughes. He muffed the comedy and couldn’t get an out anywhere, with Bote attached the account 7-7. The Cubs went advanced aback Anthony Rizzo affected Gennett to go to his appropriate to acreage a grounder, giving him no attempt at the bowl or a bifold play.
Maddon admired a lot of things that happened, but annihilation added than Bote’s aggressiveness.
“Great baserunning by Bote,” Maddon said. “Everyone talks about hitting, but watch (Bote) on the bases. He’s outstanding.”
Baez, who was accustomed with a distinct on the brawl to the mound, accomplished with two RBIs and a baseborn base.
It had appeared Gennett would be the ambitious All-Star who helped his aggregation backpack the day. His singles in the aboriginal and third helped the Reds put Tyler Chatwood in a 7-2 hole.
The antagonism of Baez and Gennett is account acquainted because there ability not be allowance for both on the National League All-Star team, which will be called Sunday. The Braves’ Ozzie Albies is accepted to win the fan vote, and it’s cryptic if administrator Dave Roberts will booty three additional basemen.
Gennett, who had a four-homer d aftermost year, leads the NL with a .329 batting boilerplate and has 14 homers and 58 RBIs. Baez is hitting .294 with 17 homers, 63 RBIs and 17 baseborn bases (two of home) while authoritative aperture bead in the field.
Both should be headed to the July 17 All-Star Bold at Nationals Park, but they won’t apperceive until Sunday.
Baez is hopeful he’ll be selected.
“I’m abiding every amateur wants to be in the All-Star Game,” he said. “If I accept the numbers, I should go. It’s one of my goals.”
Maddon can’t brainstorm a acquisition of baseball’s best players after Baez, whose absorbing comedy reminds him of Francisco Lindor, Jose Altuve and alike Hall of Famer Roberto Alomar.
“How can you not appetite him on the All-Star team?” Maddon said. “That (kind of play) is what they’re attempting to advertise to draw adolescent admirers into the game. He has a accumulation appeal, not aloof with us but in general. People appetite to see Javy at this game.
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