Results tagged ‘ Jake Arrieta ’

1/15 Rizzo: “We’re going to win NL Central”

Anthony Rizzo sent a message to the rest of the National League Central: The Cubs intend to win the division.

“It’s going to happen this year,” Rizzo said Thursday during a Cubs Caravan stop at an elementary school. “[Get to the playoffs] is what we’re going to do. We’re going to play, we’re going to win the NL Central. You guys will quote me on that. We should be the team — with all due respect to every other team, they’re just as good talent wise — but we’re going to do some things this year and that’s what we’re expecting, that’s what we’re going to put our sights on and we’re not going to accept anything less.”

Flashback to Sept. 28 when the Cubs wrapped up the regular season at 73-89 with a win over the Brewers, and Rizzo said the same thing. But he sounded more convinced Thursday now that Joe Maddon is the manager and Jon Lester is in the rotation.

“[The] 2014 [season] is over with, and 2013 is over with, and 2012. This is it,” Rizzo said. “I was saying this to my family that when everything was going down getting Lester and Maddon and signing those guys, that for the rest of my career, I should be on a contending team now. That’s exciting. The expectations now are set this year and every year on out.”

Rizzo’s prediction didn’t surprise teammate Jake Arrieta.

“I don’t think it’s out of reach at all,” Arrieta said about getting to the playoffs. “I expect the guys on our ballclub to have that same sort of mindset, especially starting with a clean slate, a fresh season, a lot of new faces. Optimism is a good thing to have. I think everybody’s excited and ready to get started.”

Rizzo said the fact that Maddon has battled in the tough American League East will help the Cubs. Plus, the players can learn from Lester’s and catcher David Ross’s postseason experience. The Cubs should head into 2015 better prepared.

“I’ve never been [to the World Series], Starlin [Castro] has never been there,” Rizzo said. “[Lester and Ross] are going to help us with everything. That’s what’s great with how our roster is shaping up is we’ll have a lot of knowledge, a lot of youth, and a lot of talent.”

Rizzo’s prediction is tame compared to the movie, “Back to the Future 2,” which predicted the Cubs will win World Series this year.

“They’re smart,” Rizzo said. “‘Back to the Future’ said we’re going to win in 2015. We’re going to be a fun team and I’m going to say it now, our goal is to make the playoffs, and once you make the playoffs, the ultimate goal is the World Series. That’s our goal every single year.”

Said Arrieta: “We’ll do our best to make sure that happens.”

– Carrie Muskat

11/13 Arrieta gets Cy Young votes

Cubs pitcher Jake Arrieta received three fifth-place votes in National League Cy Young voting by the Baseball Writers Association of America. Arrieta was tied with the Braves’ Craig Kimbrel and the Nationals’ Stephen Strasburg for ninth place. The Dodgers’ Clayton Kershaw was a unanimous winner.

9/24 Cubs 3, Cardinals 1

In three starts this season, Jake Arrieta has taken a no-hitter into the seventh inning. In his last start of the year on Wednesday, the right-hander flirted briefly with a no-no and, more importantly, helped himself with his bat.

Arrieta smacked a two-run triple to spark the Cubs to a 3-1 victory over the Cardinals, and take the series against the National League Central leaders. St. Louis maintained a 1 1/2 game lead in the division over Pittsburgh, which also lost Wednesday.

Arrieta struck out 10 over seven innings, giving up one unearned run on two hits. He’s had the edge against the Cardinals, holding them to three earned runs over 22 1/3 innings for a 1.21 ERA.

Luis Valbuena doubled to lead off the Chicago fourth against John Lackey, and two outs later, Logan Watkins was intentionally walked. Arrieta then delivered, lining the ball into the gap in right center for the first triple by a Cubs pitcher since Chris Rusin did so, Aug. 21, 2012. It was Arrieta’s 10th career hit in 64 at-bats.

The Cardinals had runners at first and third with one out in the fifth, and tallied on a throwing error by catcher Welington Castillo.

A crowd of 33,292 attended the Cubs last home game of the season at Wrigley Field.

9/24 Cubs lineup

It’s the last home game at Wrigley Field Wednesday, and Jake Arrieta makes his final start of the 2014 season. Here’s the lineup:

Coghlan LF
Baez SS
Rizzo 1B
Soler RF
Valbuena 3B
Castillo C
Lake CF
Watkins 2B
Arrieta P

If you’re coming to the game, you might want to arrive early. Players will be giving fans autographed baseballs during pre-game ceremonies.

9/17 Extra bases

* With 67 wins, the Cubs have surpassed their 66-win total from last season. They have 11 games remaining, and all but one is against a team in contention for the playoffs. The Cubs also are 37-36 at Wrigley Field.

* Jake Arrieta is the fourth Cubs pitcher in the last 100 years to give up one or no hits with at least 13 strikeouts in a complete game shutout. He joins Lou Warneke (1934), Frank Castillo (1995) and Kerry Wood (1998 and 2001).

According to baseball historian Ed Hartig, Arrieta is the first Cubs pitcher since 1950 to take no-hitters into the seventh inning three times in a season.

* Looking ahead to the Cubs four-game series against the Dodgers, here are the pitching matchups:

Thursday: Tsuyoshi Wada vs. Zack Greinke
Friday: Edwin Jackson vs. Clayton Kershaw
Saturday: Felix Doubront vs. Roberto Hernandez
Sunday: Jacob Turner vs. Dan Haren

9/16 Cubs 7, Reds 0

Jake Arrieta threw a one-hit complete game shutout in the Cubs’ 7-0 win over the Reds Tuesday night. Brandon Phillips broke up Arrieta’s no-hit bid with a one-out double to left-center field in the eighth inning. It was Arrieta’s first complete game and shutout. He struck out a career-high 13 batters. Arrieta is the first Cubs pitcher to toss a complete-game, one-hit shutout since Jon Lieber on May 24, 2001 vs. the Reds. He’s the first Cubs hurler to toss a complete-game shutout since Jeff Samardzija on May 27 of last year at the White Sox. This was the second time this year Arrieta took a no-no into the eighth, and third time he’s done so into the seventh.

* Chris Coghlan hit a three-run double to highlight a five-run sixth. He’s now 14-for-38 in his last 10 games versus the Reds. He tied a season-high with three RBI (previously done, August 23 vs. Baltimore). Coghlan recorded his 24th multi-hit effort of the year with a bases-clearing double in the fifth.

* Jorge Soler had two hits, including his fifth home run. He’s hit safely in 13 of his first 14 big league games, going 19-for-51 (.373) with 11 extra base hits (6 2B, 5 HR). Soler belted his first-career homer at Wrigley, a solo shot to left field in the seventh inning.

* Luis Valbuena has hit safely in six of his last seven games at Wrigley.

* Chris Valaika (0-for-3, R, BB, RBI) gave the Cubs a 2-0 lead when he recorded a RBI with a bases-loaded walk in the sixth inning. Matt Szczur (0-for-3, R, BB, RBI) followed Valaika’s bases-loaded walk with one of his own to pick up his fourth RBI of the campaign.

* The Cubs recorded back-to-back shutouts for the first time since blanking the Brewers in two-straight games Sept. 10-11, 2010.

* The Cubs are 37-36 in 73 games at Wrigley Field this season compared to a 28-44 home mark though 72 contests last season.

9/16 Extra bases

* Anthony Rizzo did not start Tuesday as part of the Cubs’ plan to ease him back into games while Arismendy Alcantara was sidelined with a sore right wrist injured when he crashed into the outfield wall Monday night. Alcantara’s status was day to day.

Rizzo, who had been sidelined since Aug. 26 because of a low back strain, made his first start in 18 games on Monday night
and hit a walk-off home run in the ninth. The Cubs had considered having Rizzo only play seven innings Monday since it was his first game action in 18 games, but went ahead and had him stay for nine. It worked.

“I would say I plan on giving him every other day [off] and will increase his playing time to two days in a row, maybe three,” Cubs manager Rick Renteria said. “I have to let it play itself out first.”

* Alcantara had an MRI on his right wrist and was wearing a brace on Tuesday. He slammed into the brick wall in right center catching Kristopher Negron’s ball in the eighth inning. The Reds had a runner on and two out, and there was no score in the game.

“Somebody was saying somebody forgot to tell him there’s a brick wall behind the ivy,” Renteria said of Alcantara. “That’s a game-saving play. He gave tremendous effort, [ran a] great line, very smooth, explosive action and got to it and was able to make the catch.”

It was an exceptional play for Alcantara who has primarily played in the infield.

“His immersion into center field was a pretty easy transition, in terms of chasing balls down, reading balls off the bat,” Renteria said. “He’s continued to learn where to throw the ball, how aggressive to be with certain plays. He’s continued to improve. That’s a testament to him because he’s taken on a lot.”

* Edwin Jackson, sidelined with a strained right lat, will make his first start since Aug. 20 on Friday when the Cubs play host to the Dodgers at Wrigley Field. Jackson threw an extended side session as a tune-up. Rookie Eric Jokisch will be available to piggyback because Jackson was not expected to go deep in the game.

– Carrie Muskat

9/16 Cubs lineup

Anthony Rizzo, who came back after an 18-game break because of low back problems, was not in the lineup Tuesday night for the Cubs in Game 2 of their three-game series against the Reds. According to the Cubs, this was a planned off day to ease him back into games. Here’s the lineup:

Coghlan LF
Baez SS
Valbuena 3B
Soler RF
Castillo C
Valaika 1B
Watkins 2B
Szczur CF
Arrieta P

Rizzo and manager Rick Renteria did caution that they would take it easy with the first baseman, who played for the first time since Aug. 26 on Monday. Rizzo delivered a walk-off home run in the ninth in the 1-0 win over the Reds.

9/2 Cubs lineup

Jake Arrieta gets the start Tuesday night as the Cubs play host to the Brewers at Wrigley Field. Here’s the lineup:

Coghlan LF
Baez 2B
Castro SS
Valbuena 3B
Soler RF
Castillo C
Alcantara CF
Valaika 1B
Arrieta P

8/28 Reds 7, Cubs 2

* Jake Arrieta did not have his command, or ability to stop the Reds running game Thursday. Cincinnati collected six hits and drew four walks off Arrieta, and then stole six bases over four innings.

“I was bad at controlling the running game today,” Arrieta said. “That’s my fault, not giving Baker any opportunity to throw those guys out. Putting them in scoring position sets them up for some of those hits.”

Five of the Reds runs came with two outs, and he couldn’t get the strikeout in big situations when needed.

“Arrieta, we knew, was going to be very hard to score on,” Reds manager Bryan Price said. “So I felt we needed to create some scoring opportunities by running. He’s a little bit slower and more deliberate to the plate, and we were able to take advantage of that.”

Said manager Rick Renteria: “He just didn’t have his ‘Jake like’ command today.”

* With the loss, the Cubs are 20-34 against NL Central teams, and 5-11 against the Reds.

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