For most of Tuesday night’s game on the South Side, the Cubs and Sox pitching was evenly matched. Both Mark Buehrle and Matt Garza had decent nights. Both allowed two earned runs — Buehrle on five hits over 5.1 innings with three strikeouts, and Garza on four hits and a walk over 5.0 innings with four strikeouts. And indeed, it seemed that fans were in for a traditional pitchers’ duel until the sixth inning. Both even gave up solo home runs to the opposing team’s first baseman.
Then, mother nature indicated she had different plans. The skies opened up and a torrential downpour washed over the Cell, ultimately postponing play for more than 1.5 hours. When the teams returned to the field, the bullpens were forced to take over the game. That’s where the game would ultimately turn.
The Cubs struck first after the rain delay, as Starlin Castro scored on a sac-fly by Aramis Ramirez off of Jesse Crain to tie the game at two in the top of the sixth. But one inning later, the Sox would once again take the lead. Pitching in relief for Garza, Jeff Samardzija began the bottom of the seventh inning with a double to Alexei Ramirez. This was followed by an A.J. Pierzynski single, a pop-up by Alex Rios, and then a sacrifice fly by Brent Morel to score Ramirez.
That extra run would be all the Sox would need. The Cubs had chances in the eighth inning, but, as has been the case so many times in the 2011 season, just couldn’t capitalize. Sergio Santos closed out the night with a four-out save, his thirteenth of the season.
The two teams will play the rubber match of the series on Wednesday evening. First pitch will be at 7:10 P.M., CDT.