6/21 Cubs 3, Astros 1

Matt Garza’s Spring Training is finally over. The Cubs right-hander, who began the year on the disabled list and didn’t make his first start until May 21, held the Astros to one run over eight plus innings in a 3-1 rain-delayed Interleague victory Friday.

Anthony Rizzo belted a monster leadoff home run in the fourth, Darwin Barney had three hits and needed a triple to complete the cycle, and Scott Hairston added a solo shot in the sixth to power the Cubs, now 7-2 against American League teams this year.

Garza set season highs in innings pitched and strikeouts, and posted his third quality start and second ina row. Among the four hits off the right-hander was a leadoff home run by Chris Carter in the seventh.

“His fastball had life and [he had] command of it, down and away, and in,” Cubs manager Dale Sveum said. “He got his ground balls. His slider got better as the game went on. He did a great job.”

Garza may have done too well. In his last two starts, he’s given up one earned run over 15 innings. There were plenty of scouts who waited out the three hour, 18 minute rain delay at the start of the game to see the Cubs pitcher in person. The Trade Deadline isn’t that far away.

“You don’t want to lose a guy who can give up one run in his last 15 innings,” Sveum said. “Obviously, it’s a business, and that’s not part of my business.”

Garza has been rumored to be dealt his entire career. This year is no different.

“I’m looking forward to the next five days,” Garza said, staying focused on the task at hand. “I think I face Milwaukee in Milwaukee and I’ll be ready.”

He was matched up for the second straight game with catcher Dioner Navarro, who was his teammate in Tampa, rather than Welington Castillo.

“[Garza] better listen to me,” Navarro said, laughing.

Navarro then complemented Castillo for the job he’s done. Bottom line, Garza is the one on the mound.

“I’ve got nothing to do with it — he’s the one pitching and he’s the one throwing the ball,” Navarro said.

Garza missed a chance for a complete game after he walked Jose Altuve to open the ninth. Kevin Gregg took over, and closed things out for his 11th save in as many opportunities.

– Carrie Muskat

9 Comments

Well that was fun!! Great game! Thanks Cubbies!

hey joey how’d garza throw to navarro? LOL… plus a hit on top of that…. man what a bad deal to let Garza choose his catcher….. you should be upset about that *rollingeyes* #sarcasm

Hey White, did Barney have three hits WITH a homer? Gosh, what production from a weak hitting GOLD GLOVE defensive marvel….and all in the lead off spot??? Wow. Go Barney!!
Did you notice that Sveum “allowed” Navarro to catch Garza? Awesome that a pitcher has success with a personal catcher. I think Maddux had the same approach. The only thing frustraing aobut this is NOT that Garza gets his catcher of choice, hey more power to him, but that Sveum continues to spew that is NOT the case and that Castillo will catch Garza. Give it up Sveum, allow and admit that Garza is more successful with Navarro than Castillo but don’t be spineless and say it’s only because Castillo caught 4 games in a row. If Sveum WANTED Castillo to catch Garza HE could have scheduled it so. He didn’t, he set up an excuse and ran with it. Garza and Navarro all the way baby!! I’m all for THAT, not Sveum’s excuses however. And GO BARNEY!! Did I say that already? Oh well, GO BARNEY! Soon HE may get the coveted 3 or 4 spot in the order…shouldn’t take much of an effort to unseat the failing Soriano.

i believe you used “every squirrel finds a nut”… so im going to use that now…

And every cat finds a rat! And when you are caught we got what? Purée of rat. Run Petrey run!

you are hallucinating again old lady….. calm down and take ur meds

you can find a way to complain about anything and then twist your words later to mean whatever you want… amazing!!!!! #childishgames

Dale S. does seem to have his favorites. I wonder how many in FO favor “him?”
We used to have a pitcher who had his fav catcher. That was appartently OK
with Dull Dale, Scuse my spelling? Yah Barney!!!!!!

Garza has done well his past two starts, given up one run in 15 innings or so. What is left unsaid here is that Garza needed two performances like that to atone for the disastrous start he had in the game prior to these last two starts. In that one, he surrendered 9 earned runs, if you all recall. So his earned run average over the three games is above 4, I`m thinking, which is pedestrian, or average for the major leagues these days.

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