Cubs relievers alternate between LF, mound
MILWAUKEE — One pitcher called it a “little terrifying,” while the other said it was “tough to see” in the outfield as the Chicago Cubs used two relievers to play left field and pitch in bottom of the eighth inning against the Brewers on Wednesday.
After right-hander Steve Cishek gave up a base hit to Orlando Arcia to lead off the inning, Cishek went to left field in favor of left-hander Brian Duensing who came in to face lefty pinch-hitter Eric Thames. After Thames struck out, Cishek returned to the mound, to pitch to the right-handed hitting Lorenzo Cain, while Duensing went to left.
“It was a little terrifying,” Duensing said after the 1-0 loss. “A lot of praying going on out there … Something I’ve never done before. Not that it was a box but something I can check off.”
The two weren’t done switching positions as Cishek got Cain to ground out, allowing Duensing to face lefty Christian Yelich, who flied out.
“If it does go extra innings you have to save some pitchers there and those two guys, I talked to them about doing this before. It just popped,” manager Joe Maddon explained. “The way their batting order set up it just played out perfectly. You can’t always do it but it worked out today.”
Neither pitcher got a fly ball as by the time Yelich came up to face Duensing, Maddon sent Willson Contreras to left. That move paid off also, considering Yelich hit a ball slicing away from Contreras, who still made the catch. Both pitchers say they would have made the grab as well.
“Was hoping one day it would happen,” Cishek said of playing the outfield. “I don’t know who gave me the (sun) glasses — I don’t want to throw anyone under the bus — but they were prescription glasses. They made me nervous. It was tough to see out there.”
June 13, 2018 at 04:03PM