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updated: 8/23/2014 11:03 PM

Renteria goes by what he sees, likes results

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  • Chris Coghlan hits a 3-run triple in the second inning Saturday to give the Cubs a 4-2 lead before the rain hit at Wrigley Field.

      Chris Coghlan hits a 3-run triple in the second inning Saturday to give the Cubs a 4-2 lead before the rain hit at Wrigley Field.
    Associated Press

 
 

With apologies to the "Peanuts" comic strip, sometimes you just have to tell your statistics to shut up.

That's what Cubs manager Rick Renteria did Saturday both before and during a three-hour, nine-minute rain delay. The good, old-fashioned managing-by-the-gut approach paid off for the Cubs in a 7-2 victory over the Baltimore Orioles at rain-soaked Wrigley Field.

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Delays this past week at the old ballpark totaled nine hours and 40 minutes, so maybe everybody was just a bit punchy.

Renteria saw that his left fielder, Chris Coghlan, was 0-for-14 lifetime against Orioles starting pitcher Bud Norris. No worries. Coghlan started and hit a 3-run triple in the second inning to help rally the Cubs from a 2-0 deficit into a 4-2 lead.

It worked with pitcher Justin Grimm, too.

After Kyle Hendricks pitched 2 innings before the rains hit, Renteria made the surprise choice of going with Grimm, who has been more of a late-inning short guy, over long man Carlos Villanueva.

All Grimm did was pitch a season-high 3⅓ innings of hitless ball to get the win and improve to 4-2. The best was how Grimm heard about his surprise assignment from pitching coach Chris Bosio.

"It was right before, actually," Grimm said of the resumption of play. "I was sitting in the locker room watching the Little League World Series game. Bosio came up and said, 'Hendricks, you're down, and Grimm, you're in.' My heart just started beating really fast. All right, here we go."

Renteria, who has been a by-the-book guy to the point of tediousness in his first year as a big-league manager, shrugged off the devil-may-care approach of Saturday.

"I know people try to point to two different schools -- numbers and gut and old school and blah, blah, blah," he said. "You take a balanced approach to what you do. You've got to trust what your eyes are telling you, too.

"It just worked out. It could have easily not worked out, and it would have been the same thing: 'What were the factors that you used to make the decisions you were making?'

"It worked out, and the guys did a really nice job up and down through the lineup. We're very happy the way we played these last couple days. Actually, the whole homestand we've been competing, and against a pretty good club."

The Cubs (57-72) won their second straight over Baltimore (73-54), the leaders of the American League East. They got home run No. 7 from Javier Baez, who launched a line drive to the opposite field in right for a seventh-inning solo shot.

They also got 3 hits from No. 7 hitter Arismendy Alcantara and 2 hits and 2 RBI from No. 8 hitter Logan Watkins.

And then there was Coghlan, who playfully feigned ignorance over Norris having his number.

"He has?" Coghlan asked. "What's his numbers? Just for whatever reason, he's a good pitcher. Yeah, guys were reminding me. I guess they had it on the stat sheet. But it was good to be able to get that (triple). Big situation.

"He (Renteria) is the man. I didn't know what was going to happen, so I appreciate him having faith in me."

bmiles@dailyherald.com

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