MIAMI – It’s not against the Brewers or the Dodgers or the Braves, but it’s an effort that most fans would envision from the Cubs team in a best-case scenario in 2019.
One of the pitchers re-signed this past offseason was superb. One of the utility players picked up played a major part in a strong offensive effort.
Oh, and Javy was, well, Javy.
All of these came together to produce an impressive effort against the struggling Marlins on Wednesday night in a 6-0 win in Miami that gives the Cubs their first series sweep of the year. From the starting pitching to the hitters to the bullpen, it all worked like it was supposed to in 2019.
Cole Hamels sparked the performance with a third-consecutive strong start, failing to allow a run in seven innings of work. For a third-straight game, he didn’t yield a walk and struck out a season-high eight batters to keep the Marlins at bay.
A familiar face and a new one helped to propel the Cubs’ offense behind Hamels, starting with Daniel Descalso, who kicked off the scoring with an RBI single to center in the second. He knocked in two in the third on an RBI double, giving the utility player four hits and four RBIs in the series.
That big third inning would net four runs with Javier Baez and Jason Heyward each knocking in a run before Descalso’s double. As he has been most of the season, Baez wasn’t done on the evening, and put the exclamation point on the effort with his sixth homer of the year in the 8th inning.
The shortstop, who also dazzled with a few plays in the field, collected eight hits, four RBI, and two homers in three games in Miami in continuing his strong start to the season.
With their first sweep of the year, the Cubs improve to 8-9 on the season as they get a day off Thursday before a six-game homestand against the Diamondbacks and Dodgers. They enter that stretch after playing their best baseball of the season to date and a game that showed their potential from the mound to the plate.