CEDAR RAPIDS, IOWA – Friday night the Cubs were able to end a five game losing streak, their second longest of the season, with a comeback victory on the road at Perfect Game Field.
Daniel Palencia continued his incredible stretch with four scoreless innings on the mound for the Cubs, he’s hasn’t allowed a run in five of his last six outings. He faced one above the minimum, striking out five, and showcasing that sweeping slider maybe more than he has in a game all season.
Jefferson Morales for the second night in a row got the home team on the board in the fifth inning, this time with an RBI double to the gap in left-center that scored Willi Joe Garry Jr. from first base. From that moment on it was all Cubs.
The Cubs had scored first in the first three games in this series and lost all three, well the Kernels scored first on Friday and couldn’t hold on either.
Matthew Swain took the ball for the Kernels in the sixth inning and it went awry quickly. With one out Jordan Nwogu singled on a grounder up the third base line. Nwogu continued his ferocious second half with three hits and walk. Then Lance Rymel pinch-hit Pete Crow-Armstrong for Owen Caissie, PCA delivered with a line shot single to right. After Pablo Aliendo walked the bases were juiced. Casey Opitz banged a two hopper to second that looked like a potential double play ball to end the inning, but Wander Javier dropped the feed from Jake Rucker, allowing two runs to score. Kevin Made, playing for the first time since Tuesday, smoked a single to add to the lead and with two outs Fabian Pertuz snuck a dribbler through the left side of the infield to score Opitz. Pertuz tallied three hits for the second time this series.
Leading 4-1 the bullpen took over and after a lackluster effort Wednesday, the Cubs pen dominated for the second night in a row. Joe Nahas came on for Palencia and went 3.2 innings allowing just one run while punching out six, and Riley Martin went the final 1.1 scoreless to get his first save of the year with South Bend.
While this weekend won’t effect any seeding or home field advantage for next week’s playoff series between these two sides, it must be a confidence boost in the clubhouse for the Cubs to get a win, ending a five-game losing streak overall and getting a win against the Kernels after starting the year 2-7 against the first half West Division champs. It’s a win the Cubs can now build off.