Emotions were running high at Wrigley Field Friday as Kris Bryant made his return to Chicago Friday afternoon. The reception was heartfelt and the former MVP shed tears during a pregame ceremony that included a tribute video and the presentation of gifts from the front office. As for the actual game, the Giants took care of business and cooled off the red-hot Cubs.
Kyle Hendricks appeared to be highly motivated against his former teammate, striking Bryant out twice on nasty changeups. Hendricks was much sharper than he had been recently, allowing just a lone run on a LaMonte Wade Jr. bloop single in the top of the 6th.
The Cubs’ entire offense consisted of two hits from Frank Schwindel, including a solo home run in the bottom of the 4th inning. Trevor Megill did not look good when he took over in the 7th, giving up a long two-run bomb to left by Evan Longoria to put the Giants ahead 3-1.
Michael Rucker took over later in the frame and allowed his own two-run homer to Brandon Belt that increased the advantage to 5-1. San Francisco would add one more and take a very easy 6-1 victory. (Box score)
Why the Cubs Lost
The Giants’ bullpen game was very effective, keeping the Cubs lineup totally in check.
San Francisco was very happy to see Hendricks’ day come to an end. They immediately jumped all over the Cubs ‘pen in the 7th and put up four runs.
Stats That Matter
- It was the Professor’s best start in over a month: 6 IP, 1 R, 4 H, 4 K, and 2 BB.
- Bryant walked and scored a run in the 8th inning to end his emotional day.
- Schwindel also drew a walk to reach base three times on Friday.
The Cubs might not have fared so well, but fans were able to survive Bryant’s return to Wrigley, which included Tom Ricketts and Crane Kenney awkwardly posing with him in the pregame ceremony. As always, Bryant handled things with total class, not that we expected anything less. I wish him nothing but success the rest of this year and into the playoffs.