CHICAGO – At this place, with this pitcher, in this situation, it seemed as close to a lock as it could be.
Kyle Hendricks, who threw an 81-pitch complete game against the Cardinals back in May, was back on the mound to face them at Wrigley Field Sunday night. The Cubs came into the contest having won their first five games of the season at home against St. Louis, including two this weekend at the Friendly Confines.
Sounds like the perfect scenario for a win, and it played out exactly that way.
Hendricks was once again strong on the mound, surrendering only one run over seven innings, while the surging Kyle Schwarber kicked in two more RBI in a 5-1 victory.
In the process, the Cubs continue a very promising trend when it comes to their division rivals.
So far this season, the team has played six games against St. Louis in Chicago and has managed to win all of them. The Cubs impressively swept the Cardinals back in May thanks to a complete game gem from Hendricks on May 3rd, a four-run comeback the next day that was aided by a grand slam from catcher Taylor Davis along with a Javier Baez go-ahead homer.
On that Sunday night, the Cubs scored 13 runs with Kris Bryant hitting a grand slam of his own in an eight-run victory.
Not even a sweep at the hands of the Cardinals in St. Louis last weekend could stop their home momentum against their division rivals – and things played out similarly. Cole Hamels started the series with a great pitching performance on Friday in a 3-1 Cubs win, and the team once again rallied from four runs down to win Saturday thanks to nine unanswered runs.
Sunday was another decisive victory with Hendricks and Schwarber leading the way in a four-run triumph that brought out the brooms for a second time this year against St. Louis at home.
If you go back to last season, the Cubs actually have posted a seven-game winning streak against the Cardinals at Wrigley Field, having beaten them in the regular season finale last September. In 2018 the Cubs were 5-4 against St. Louis at Wrigley Field.
Neither team will be seeing much of each other until the final weeks of the season, as each team heads their separate ways for the next three months. The Cardinals make their final trip to Wrigley Field for 2019 on September 19th for a four-game series that finishes up regular season play at the Friendly Confines. A week later, the teams will complete the regular season with a three-game set at Busch Stadium.
Much will happen between now and then, but for now all the Cardinals see when they look at Wrigley Field is a collection of brooms this season.