Yu Darvish is back. Today he went 4 1/3 innings and struck out nine Cubs with dominating stuff. Unfortunately for Yu, he was on a pitch limit, the defense behind him was sloppy, and the offense was dead, so he picked up the loss.
The one blemish on Yu's day came in the bottom of the 3rd when he made the grave mistake of walking the #8 hitter (in this case, .200 hitter Miguel Montero) to lead off the inning. Darvish struck out pitcher Jason Hammel before allowing a Tommy La Stella single to put two on.
After Kris Bryant struck out, Yu was within a pitch of getting out of the inning unscathed. However, Anthony Rizzo went down and got a 1-2 back foot slider to double in both runner to give the Cubs a lead they would never come close to relinquishing.
Before the break, when the Rangers were having struggles pitching, the team was still hitting. Now, with their ace back, a rested bullpen, and Keone Kela striking out the side in a scoreless inning in his first appearance since April, the Rangers' bats have gone quiet.
If you want to look on the bright side, at least Darvish and Kela each pitched, threw well, and got one under their belts without physical issue.
Player of the Game: In addition to Darvish's sexy stuff, Ryan Rua went 1 for 2 with a walk, stolen base, and scored the Rangers' only run on a heads up play as he scored from second base on an infield single by Elvis Andrus.
Up Next: Cole Hamels tries to end the losing streak against RHP John Lackey of the Cubs. First pitch is scheduled for 1:20 pm CT once again.