- AP Photo/Tony Dejak
- Kris Bryant’s ninth-inning grand slam off the Indians’ David Murphy, normally a DH, put the Cubs up 17, a sufficient cushion for the bullpen.
The Cubs have the most one-run victories (17) in the big leagues this year, and now they also have a perfect record in 17-run games. They slipped by the Indians in Cleveland last night, 17-0.
Kyle Schwarber has given himself a tough act to follow. In his first major-league start he had a triple and three singles. Anthony Rizzo, Addison Russell, and Chris Denorfia homered off regular pitchers, and in the ninth inning, Kris Bryant slugged a grand slam off David Murphy, who’s normally a designated hitter or an outfielder. Cubs southpaw Tsuyoshi Wada went seven innings for the win, which eclipsed the A’s 16-0 triumph over the Giants in 2005 for the largest blowout shutout in the history of interleague play.
Nearly as amazing: on the south side last night, the White Sox scored—not once but twice. Against the Pirates, the Sox stretched their scoreless streak to 30 innings before plating two in the sixth. Then they commenced a new scoreless streak, with zeroes in the seventh, eighth, and ninth to wrap up a 3-2 loss, their sixth straight. They should be able to extend the zero streak tonight, as they face Pirates right-hander Gerrit Cole, who leads NL starters in ERA (1.71) and in wins—he’s 10-2.
It was the Pirates who won the most lopsided big-league shutout since 1900—over the Cubs, at Wrigley Field, on September 16, 1975. Pittsburgh scored nine in the first and snuck out to an 18-0 lead by the fifth. Lacking a slaughter rule, the teams kept playing, and the final was 22-0. (In 2004 the Indians would beat the Yankees by that same score.) The Pirates’ Rennie Stennett became the first player since 1900 to collect seven hits in a nine-inning game—he went seven for seven, with two hits in the first and another pair in the fifth. The usually reliable starter Rick Reuschel lasted one-third of an inning, surrendering eight runs; his brother Paul mopped up with two scoreless frames. The paid attendance was 4,932; the Tribune‘s Dick Dozer wrote that most of them stuck around “to see history being made.” After Stennett’s last hit, an eighth-inning triple, he was taken out of the game, Dozer noted, “and got as big an ovation as a crowd of such slim nature can muster.”