Cubs take some consolation from Hoerner's heads-up play
Maybe this wasn't such a good outing for the Cubs, but they took some joy in turning a soft line drive into a double play on Sunday.
It happened in the eighth inning with the score still 1-0. With a runner on first, Avisail Garcia lifted a soft liner that second baseman Nico Hoerner let fall to the ground. Hoerner then nailed Garcia at first base and tagged out the runner, Omar Narvaez, in a rundown.
According to Hoerner and manager David Ross, the key to the whole thing was shortstop Javy Baez noticing Garcia wasn't running hard to first and relaying that news to Hoerner.
"That was a total group effort," Hoerner said. "That does not happen if he's not yelling in my ear. Pop ups, especially on a day like this at Wrigley, your head is definitely on the ball, not on the runner. So great communication and that was a big play for us for sure. That was fun."
And maybe it is a little ironic, since Baez has been criticized a few times for not running hard on a pop up or fly ball, including earlier this week. But hey, live and learn, right?
"(Hoerner) is such a smart baseball player," Ross said. "Javy's screaming at him, 'He's not running, he's not running.' I think it's great communication between the middle infielders. Awareness, knowing that you're in the grass, the ball's not going to take that big of a hop.
"There's just a sense of being a great baseball player and his IQ is extremely high. You love that type of stuff. That baseball mentality and the having communication between the middle infielders. That's one that really makes you smile and I'll hold onto that one."