Tom Gorzelanny had a golden opportunity to continue to showcase his stuff for a 2010 starting rotation spot. He was going up against the 1st place Reds in a hostile environment facing a lineup that loves to rake in its home park. It was the perfect time to show that he can pitch on the big stage against one of the more productive lineups in the National League today, but Gorzelanny cracked under the spotlight, giving up 6 ER on 7 hits (including 3 home runs) over his 5 innings of work. Maybe he just had an off-night, but he clearly showed that he is still simply a back-of-the-rotation starter on your average-to-bad major league ballclub. Gorzelanny walked 2 and struck out 1 and fell to 7-8 on the season with a 3.98 ERA. The ERA is still under 4.00 (a stat I like), but with his 1.46 WHIP, he gives too many teams too many chances throughout an outing. And eventually, that usually comes back to haunt you like it did last night. Jay Bruce stroked 3 home runs on the night (2 off of Gorzelanny) and Chris Valaika stroked the other homer off of Gorzelanny.
The Cubs offense left a lot to be desired as well. The team only managed 6 hits off of Johnny Cueto and a Reds reliever. They didn’t draw a single walk on the night. Xavier Nady and Marlon Byrd each had 2 hits for the Cubs. Tyler Colvin drove in the only Cubs run with a double in the 4th inning. Blake DeWitt had the only other Cubs hit in the lead-off spot.
So, the Cubs 3-game winning streak has ended, and now it’s back to reality after winning 3 games in a row over the Nationals. Sure the Nationals have a better record than the Cubs in 2010, but are they really that much better of a team? Probably not. But the Reds are one of the best teams in the NL this year, and it’s clear that the Cubs cannot compete at their level. Randy Wells will give it a shot tonight as he takes on Bronson Arroyo in Game 2 of the series tonight at the Great American Ballpark.