Lilly vs. Pineiro

Tuesday’s loss snapped Ted Lilly’s four-game winning streak against the Cardinals. His last loss to St. Louis was Aug. 20, 2007, when Joel Pineiro was on the mound — yes, the same Joel Pineiro who held the Cubs to three hits Tuesday.

“I felt like I came in second place,” said Lilly, who gave up three runs on four hits and three walks over seven innings. “I had an opportunity to try to keep up, which would’ve been a lot of fun. It’s an opportunity to do something pretty special if you get two guys going at it like that and putting up zeroes nine innings, matching each other. That’s what I would’ve liked to have done.

“I feel like ultimately, that’s what you’re supposed to do as a starting pitcher is do whatever you can to give up fewer runs than the other guy,” he said. “Unfortunately, I had my hands full.”

The Cubs didn’t take many pitches. Derrek Lee said that’s because the Cardinals’ right-hander was throwing strikes, and if they tried to be patient, they’d be down 0-2 in the count.

“When we had our meetings, we kind of knew,” Pineiro said of the Cubs. “They’re a very aggressive team. They want to try to knock the pitcher out and get him out of the game early. If you make your pitches down in the zone, they’ll be on the ground like they were today.”

The Cubs made only three fly ball outs in the game, and struck out five times. It was Pineiro’s fourth career shutout and the three hits matched his career low-hit game. He had two three-ball counts and totaled 21 first-pitch strikes.

— Carrie Muskat



How many less than 10 pitch innings did Pineiro have? Patience is a virtue. Last night, the Cubs were less than virtuous.

Three — the third inning (seven pitches); fourth (four); and sixth (eight). Pineiro needed 10 pitches to get through the eighth.

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