Dale Sveum said it best after the game, “That’s just men playing against boys right now.” For the second straight night the Cubs gave up six home runs to the Nationals, at least they didn’t use as many pitchers tonight as they did last night. Volstad was the one serving up long balls tonight, but at least he was able to give the Cubs some innings. Volstad’s night came to an end after five innings, he gave up five runs on nine hits while walking four and striking out two. Volstad gave up three home runs, Michael Bowden gave up one, and Blake Parker gave up two more. Bryce Harper had two home runs tonight, and Adam LaRoche hit another home run in this one, LaRoche has been amazing against the Cubs, and will continue to be awesome until someone decides to pitch him inside off the plate. I mentioned it yesterday, opponents are way too comfortable in the box against Cubs pitchers, until they go inside with a purpose balls will continue to leave the park. Speaking of comfortable at the plate, the Cubs are anything but as they were carved up by now 18 game winner Gio Gonzalez. The Cubs could only manage four hits in the 9-1 defeat, one of which was an Anthony Rizzo solo home run in the ninth inning. Dale Sveum was ejected tonight after he took exception to home plate umpire Larry Vanover “eyeballing” the Cubs bench after a couple of close calls. The Cubs will try to avoid the four game sweep tomorrow night.
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Paul Maholm’s Cubs career got off to a frustrating start for Maholm and Cubs fans alike. Luckily for all involved Maholm has taken that frustration out on his opponents in each of his last three appearances. The Dodgers were today’s victim as Maholm carved up Los Angeles over 6 innings en route to a 5-4 victory. Alfonso Soriano had a solid day at the plate going 3-for-3 with two doubles, crazy I know, and two RBI’s. David DeJesus didn’t let Soriano have all the fun at the plate as he finished the day a home run short of the cycle as he went 3-for-4 with an RBI. The Cubs of course held a one run lead as the game moved to the ninth inning, how anyone could expect anything different after yesterday’s debacle is beyond me as baseball always seems to work in mysterious ways. However unlike yesterday, Rafael Dolis was able to shut the door on the Dodgers for his second save of the season, and a big Cubs win to start the home stand. Full box score and highlights after the jump.