At 15-5, the Chicago Cubs are off to a hot start this season. Not even cold weather has been able to slow them down.
Tuesday night, the Cubbies hosted the Milwaukee Brewers for the first of three games at Wrigley Field, and the temperature at game time dipped to 40 degrees. And with a 16 mph wind shooting out of left center field, it felt like 34 degrees to those sitting in the friendly confines.
The NL Central-leading Cubs managed only two hits in the first 5 1/3 innings against Brewers’ righty Jimmy Nelson, who tossed 109 pitches in the contest.
In the sixth, however, the Cubs’ bats warmed up. Addison Russell slugged a two-out, two-run triple to break a 1-1 tie. An inning later, Anthony Rizzo doubled in a run to give the Cubs a 4-1 lead. Chicago gave up two runs to the Brewers in the eighth, but managed to hang on for a 4-3 victory.
The win improved the Cubs to 4-0 this season in games that had a first-pitch temperature at 48 degrees or below. Chicago has outscored their opponents 26-9 in those four games, all of which were played at Wrigley. Three of the four games, as noted below, were tangles with the Cincinnati Reds.
Date, Opponent, Temperature, Result
April 26, Brewers, 40 degrees, Cubs 4-3
April 14, Reds, 45 degrees, Cubs 8-1
April 13, Reds, 48 degrees, Cubs 9-2
April 11, Reds, 48 degrees, Cubs 5-3
The Brewers, who play their home games in cozy Miller Park where’s there’s a retractable roof, managed only four hits Tuesday night.
“It was a tough day to hit, wind blowing and really cold,” said Cubs’ starter Kyle Hendricks, who gave up only a run on two hits in five innings, but did not factor into the decision.
The two teams meet again Wednesday night for game two of the three-game series. Temperatures will be warmer, but a moderate wind will be blowing in from center field. In case you’re wondering, the Cubs are 4-2 with the wind blowing in a Wrigley this season.
Also, there’s a good chance rain could be persistent throughout the night, possibly causing delays.
By the way, Jake Arrieta is scheduled to pitch tonight for the Cubs. Perhaps the Brewers will be praying for rain.