Having a bad inning is one thing. Allowing an opponent to tie franchise and major-league records along the way is far more alarming. The Chicago Cubs hope to bounce back from Saturday’s nightmarish seventh inning – and avoid a sweep – as they wrap up their three-game set against the host St. Louis Cardinals on Sunday. The Cubs have struggled scoring runs in the series, but it was their inability to keep the Cardinals off the scoresheet in the seventh inning of Saturday’s game that made headlines.
The Cardinals matched the league record with seven doubles en route to a 12-run seventh frame that matched the club mark for most offense in a single inning. That accounted for all the scoring as the Cardinals remained five games behind the Cincinnati Reds for top spot in the National League Central. They send 11-game winner Lance Lynn to the mound in the series finale, hoping he’ll build off a seven-inning, 10-strikeout performance last time out. Lynn is opposed by Cubs lefty Travis Wood.
Cubs Cardinals Betting
When: 2:15 PM ET, Sunday, July 22, 2012
Where: Busch Stadium, St. Louis, Missouri
TV: 2:15 p.m. ET, WGN (Chicago), FSM (St. Louis)
PITCHING MATCHUP: Cubs LH Travis Wood (4-4, 3.92 ERA) vs. Cardinals RH Lance Lynn (11-4, 3.27)
Wood has made large strides in his first season with the Cubs, lowering his ERA and WHIP considerably while limiting opposing hitters to a .222 average. Yet, the 25-year-old has been alarmingly homer-prone – and it cost him in his last outing, as he surrendered a pair of home runs while getting tagged for eight runs over 4 2/3 innings against the Miami Marlins. That ended a personal four-game winning streak, but Wood comes into Sunday’s finale with a 2-0 record and 2.33 ERA in three career starts against St. Louis.
Three straight subpar outings have given way to back-to-back gems from Lynn, who settled for a no-decision against the Brewers six days ago despite allowing just one run on seven hits. The burly 25-year-old has been sensational against the Cubs in his career, going 2-0 with a 1.17 ERA in three appearances, including a pair of starts. Both of his victories came back in April, when he limited Chicago to just two runs in 13 1/3 innings over two starts.
1. The Cardinals hadn’t scored 12 runs in an inning since 1926, and no team in baseball had stroked seven doubles in a frame since the Boston Bees accomplished the feat in 1936.
2. Wood has been a road warrior over his career – he has a 3.43 road ERA compared to a 5.15 home mark in 50 career appearances (46 starts).
3. Lynn is tops in the National League in run support, getting 6.63 per game.