The 2015 season is officially underway.
Sunday night the St. Louis Cardinals and Chicago Cubs faced off at Wrigley Field in a continuation of their storied rivalry. The Cubs trotted out offseason trophy Jon Lester, while the Cardinals of course had Adam Wainwright take the ball for their squad.
On a crisp night in Chicago the flames of competition promised to (hypothetically) warm the stadium. They did just that, as the Cardinals got things started early in the first with new (and hopefully future) right fielder Jason Heyward lining a double into right and Matt Holliday immediately bringing him in with an RBI single to right.
The Cardinals struck again in the second, with Matt Carpenter singling Kolten Wong in after the second baseman had walked and then advanced on a Jon Jay single. Things were quiet until the fifth, when Carpenter and Heyward had back-to-back singles and Holliday once again stroked an RBI single to score Carpenter.
That was it for Lester, who finished with 4.1 innings pitched, eight hits, three earned runs, two walks, and six strikeouts. The Cubs’ bullpen was able to stop the bleeding, however, allowing just two hits and two walks over the final 4.2 innings.
On the flip side, things went much better for the right-hander Wainwright, who authored an excellent first start, scattering five hits over six innings and allowing zero runs and striking out six. The bullpen wrote the rest of the story, as the combo of Carlos Martinez, Jordan Walden, and Trevor Rosenthal shut the door on the Cubs in the seventh, eighth, and ninth innings, respectively. The bullpen allowed only two walks and struck out six, with Rosenthal striking out the side for his first save of the season.
Players of the game:
Jason Heyward: 3-5, two doubles, one SB, one run scored.
Adam Wainwright: six innings pitched, six strikeouts, W.
Up next: Cardinals vs. Cubs Tuesday at Wrigley Field, 8:05 ET