SOUTH BEND, In. - After the South Bend Cubs came back by a large deficit last night but ultimately lost, they knew it would take a massive team effort to beat the Great Lakes Loons on Sunday afternoon at Four Winds Field. South Bend quickly fell behind 6-0 after just two innings of play in game two, but they had another comeback bid in them.
Sunday’s 8-6 win was by far the biggest team effort of the year for the Cubs. Starting pitcher Riley Thompson made it through just 0.1 innings after needing over 30 pitches to get through the first five Loons batters. After he exited with three runs allowed, Fauris Guerrero gave up three more and the Loons looked to be heading to a blowout win.
South Bend’s offense never gave up. Still with the services of Chicago Cubs second baseman Ben Zobrist, they began to chip away at the lead. The first South Bend RBI of the game came courtesy of newcomer Jake Slaughter. He chopped a ball up the middle against Ryan Pepiot to cut it to a five-run deficit.
Zobrist went 0/3 in the game, but he provided the Cubs with strong big-league advice all day long. After his at-bats, Zobrist would spend a few seconds talking to the man on-deck about what the current Great Lakes pitcher was throwing.
The Cubs scored the game’s final seven runs between the 4th and 5th innings to take the lead. The comeback was made possible by the dominant work out of the bullpen from Carlos Vega. The right-hander, who just came off the injured list today, fired four shutout innings out of the bullpen and struck out five batters.
With four runs in the bottom of the 5th inning, the Cubs grabbed the lead thanks to a sharp single from Marcus Mastrobuoni. Zac Taylor picked up a hit of his own in the next sequence to make it an 8-6 game.
In the late innings, closer Brian Glowicki sealed the deal and picked up the six out save. Today’s win means the Cubs are just a 1/2 game out of first place held by Bowling Green.
South Bend will look to grab the series lead and first place tomorrow night in game three at 7:05 PM. Right-hander Peyton Remy is the expected starter for the Cubs.