D-backs Short Hops: Game 2
After opening duel, Arizona shows a potent offense
PHOENIX -- So maybe the Diamondbacks, who have embraced the notion that every game they play can be and often is close, proved that they could score some runs in their 8-4 victory over the Cubs in Game 2 of the National League Division Series -- a victory that gave them a 2-0 lead in the series.In < 25 words ...
Chris Young and Stephen Drew came up with the big hits for Arizona, and former Cub Augie Ojeda tormented his former team. Frozen moment
Young, like so many other young hitters, has had problems with strikeouts, as evidenced by the 141 he had in the regular season. But Young was patient Thursday, walking twice and holding off on chasing after a 2-2 slider just off the outside corner on the pitch that preceded his home run.
4 -- That's the number of two-out RBIs the Diamondbacks had, three on Young's home run and another on a RBI triple by Eric Byrnes.
The Diamondbacks continue to prove that youth is no deterrent to postseason success, as Young gave Arizona a 3-2 lead with a three-run home run off Chicago starter Ted Lilly in the second inning. Young also walked twice, including an unintentional, intentional free pass in the fourth inning.
In Game 1, it was Drew who gave Arizona its first run with a home run. On Thursday in Game 2, Drew, a left-handed batter, lined a 2-2 slider from lefty Lilly into the right-field corner for a two-run triple and a 6-2 lead in the fourth inning. Drew, for the second time in as many nights, also made some fine defensive plays.
Ojeda, who played for the Cubs from 2000-2003, reached base three times as he drove in a run and scored a run and played solid defense at second base. Ojeda's bunt single (see below) preceded one of the biggest hits of the game. He also helped turn a double play in the seventh inning.
Sense of October
Sure, Drew struck the big blow in the fourth inning with a two-run triple for a 6-2 lead over the Cubs, but Ojeda pushed a bunt up the first-base line and then raced past an attempted tag by Derrek Lee. Ojeda slid headfirst and touched the bag. Chicago's manager, Lou Piniella, argued, but the call stood. Three batters later, Ojeda scored on Drew's triple.
3 AB, 1 H, 1 HR, 3 RBI, 2 R, 2 BB
Comment: The speedy leadoff hitter was on base three times and got Arizona on the scoreboard with a three-run home run in the second inning.
5 2/3 IP, 4 R, 5 H, 4 BB, 8 Ks
Comment: It wasn't always pretty, as Davis allowed a two-run home run, four walks (two in his last inning) and two runs that reliever Juan Cruz allowed to score. But his curveball was nasty, a pitch that accounted for all of his strikeouts.
"That inning is huge. You know, they take the lead and a home run and it's time for us to answer back. And to throw up a four-spot in the fashion we did ... we seemed to feed off that a little bit." -- Arizona manager Bob Melvin, on the Diamondbacks' four-run second inning that came a half-inning after the Cubs jumped out to a 2-0 lead
The Diamondbacks' flight to Chicago late Thursday will certainly be an enjoyable one, as will an off-day on Friday, as Arizona takes a 2-0 lead in the best-of-five series into Game 3 on Saturday at Wrigley Field. Veteran Livan Hernandez gets the start in what could be the series-clinching game.
Corey Brock is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.