Derrek Lee must be reading LB
In what must be the 7th or 8th freak occurrence surrounding the Cubs this season, just days after LB comes out and questions Lee's recent form, he responds in kind, clubbing 2 HRs including the game-winning, come-from-behind 2-run HR in the 9th inning. Jose Mesa, a powerful closer who hadn't blown a save in over a year, decided to pitch to him with 1st base open, and after trying to muscle him with a fastball inside, Lee picked it up and sent it soaring into deep left-center field.
It was amazing, considering the relative frustration the Cubs had endured up to that point - despite out-hitting the Pirates 13-7, they trailed 3-2, leaving 10 men on base and 4 runners in scoring position with 2 outs.
In the 9th, after a Jerry Hairston Jr. double (2-5, 2 R), Lee came to the plate and the rest is history.
We can't win like this all the time - as TheHawk and I talked after the game, he made a good point: the Cubs need to start winning by playing solid games from start to finish, as we can't rely on these come-from-behind, last-gasp wins in the dying innings.
I'll take it for now, however, as it brings the Cubs to 17-20 and tied for 3rd with Pittsburgh in the NL Central. It isn't as bad as it sounds - the Phillies beat the Cardinals again last night 7-5, leading the season series 3-1 and outscoring them 35-19 throughout (we should be studying those tapes! Or trade for Bobby Abreu...)
Small fact before I depart:
The Cubs are currently 7-9 in 1-run games so far this season.