CHICAGO – The first weekend of baseball in 2020 came with a little more pressure than usual since there is little time for players to get acclimated to play.
While an opening weekend can usually be taken in perspective in a 162-game season, there is a little more consequence when the season is only 60 games. There is not a lot of time to get questions answered if a team wants to make a run for the playoffs.
In the end, the Cubs got more positive feedback then negative, especially when it comes to their third starter of the season.
Tyler Chatwood, whose struggled to find consistency in a starting role since joining the club in 2018, delivered a strong performance over six innings against the Brewers Sunday at Wrigley Field. He kept his walks down and struck out eight batters, allowing just one earned run and three hits over his time on the mound.
Meanwhile, the Cubs’ offense backed him up, coming up with 11 hits and three homers in a 9-1 victory over Milwaukee. It gives David Ross’ team their first series win of 2020 and a healthy amount of positives as they move on to face the Reds starting on Monday.
Mostly a reliever in 2019, with just five starts in his 38 appearances, Chatwood started fast by holding the Brewers without a hit in the first four innings while striking out six with just one walk. Milwaukee was able to get a trio of hits and a run over the next two innings.
Before that, the Cubs had built a 5-0 lead that included four runs in the fourth inning. Willson Contreras, Nico Hoerner, Victor Caratini, and Ian Happ all had RBIs in that innings, but the offense wasn’t done.
Contreras hit his first home run of 2020 in the seventh inning and his solo shot was followed by one from Ian Happ then Anthony Rizzo in the eighth inning.
All were part of a positive day for the Cubs as they began a shortened 2020 season.