Game Recap: Astros 2, Cubs 1 - memo to Cubs; it's hard to win games when you don't score runs
(Box score graphic to be added later, after I restart my computer)
The Cubs initiated the second half last night with a brilliant, 2 Step Plan. Step 1 was to suppress the Astros offense through top-notch pitching, and Step 2 was to dominate them through an offense akin to the thunder of gods. Unfortunately, the Cubs left the thunder in the clubhouse.
Ted Lilly continues to give solid performances, and last night was no exception. He went 7 innings last night, on 104 pitches, and gave up only 6 hits and 2 walks while striking out 6. Unfortunately, Lilly was not perfect, and he gave up a solo shot to Carlos Lee. The Cubs have had a very tough run of luck with Lee, and yet they still pitch to him. Considering that Tejada has been offensively average this year, it may make more sense in the rest of this series to pitch around Lee to get to Miguel, even though Tejada went 3 for 4 last night, including 2 for 3 against Lilly.
The big problem was that, offensively, the Cubs looked as though they'd had a pep talk from Dusty Baker before the start of the game. They weren't patient at the plate - Moehler needed only 87 pitches to get through the 7th inning - and the Cubs drew only 1 walk while getting 4 hits.
The good news is that Dusty's shadow is fleeting these days, and I have a feeling that the Cubs will bounce back and do what they've done well all year - get walks, make clutch hits, and score lots of runs.
And now, a lovely photoshop mocking the Astros.