Despite the World Series outcome, I’m happy for Cubbies like 22-year old shortstop Addison Russell and 2nd-year setup man Carl Edwards Jr.
Addison Russell made some outstanding plays on D that largely went unmentioned by Joe Buck throughout the entire series from the FOX Sports broadcast booth. In front of a national audience. One play Russell got to last night was during a Cleveland rally in the bottom of the 3rd. Jason Kipnis scorched a 1-hopper right at him with Carlos Santana on 1st. The squared-up baseball was heading straight toward Russell’s head. Then, it just dropped like a dumbbell to his feet.
He stayed with it and underhanded it to Javier Baez, who tried to barehand it on the pivot for the 6-4-3. They didn’t turn 2 and Baez got pinned with the 2nd of his two E-4s on the night. No out recorded on it, either. But if Russell doesn’t adjust (with the quickness) to pick it, Cleveland has men on the corners. With 1 out. Instead, Cleveland had men on 1st and 2nd with 1 out. A HUGE difference with the Cubs leading in a 2-1 ballgame.
Nevertheless, it was a helluva play.
On Edwards Jr., what can I say? Cubs’ manager Joe Maddon put him into the fire late whenever there was something brewing on the other side before fireballing lefty Aroldis Chapman got up to get loose in front of Cubs bullpen coach Lester Strode. And, Edwards Jr. kept Cleveland off the board in some tight, pressure-filled spots. I only wish Maddon would’ve left the young brother out there for the final out in the 10th.
Why? So that Carl Edwards Jr. could shake hands with his catcher Miguel Montero, who didn’t go to the mound for the 27th out when Edwards Jr.’s 1-0 pitch sailed away from the strike zone for Ball 2 on a 5-pitch walk to Cleveland’s Brandon Guyer. Maybe a more veteran catcher might’ve gotten the rookie through the 10th of a World Series Game 7 save. As the last man standin’ on the hill.
Of course, y’all know by now that I had CLEVELAND IN 7. PERIOD. If you don’t, you can find it here.
Rather than dwell on an 8-7 loss, I’ll just whip out my guitar and see if I cain’t find some notes that resonate. Because my Chicago folks have been giving me the sho’ nuff blues this morning.
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