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Sunday, April 19, 2015

Cubs Take Division Lead by Winning Series from Mets

The Mets came to Wrigley with a slim, half game lead over the Cubs, but lost four of five. Four of the games were very close, with the first two going to extra innings The Cubs now lead the Mets in the NL East by 2.5 games.

Game One: Cubs 7, Mets 6, (10 innings)

W: Jenkins (9-7)
L: Folkers (1-1)

The Cubs find themselves down 5-4 in the bottom of the ninth after the Mets explode for four runs in the top of the eighth off Cubs ace Fergie Jenkins, punctuated by Tommie Agee's 10th homer. But the Cubbies rally for the tying run off Mets reliever Rich Folkers in the bottom of the ninth, on a Johnny Callison double down the right field line and RBI single by Ernie Banks. The Mets' Art Shamsky hits his second homer of the day in the top of the 10th to give NY a 6-5 lead.

But then, in the bottom of the 10th, with Folkers still in, Paul Popovich doubles and Billy Williams follows with a two run homer. He leads the league with 28 round trippers. Jenkins goes all the way to win his 9th.

Game Two: Cubs 2, Mets 1 (11 innings)
W: Aguirre (1-2)
L: Cardwell (0-3)

The Mets' Ray Sadecki and the Cubs' Joe Decker hook up in a pitching duel, tied at one after nine. But in the bottom of the 11th, Don Cardwell hits Ernie Banks and allows a single from Cleo James with two outs. The next batter, Jack Hiatt, scorches a double down the left field line to finally win it. Both teams recorded 10 strikeouts, with the Cubs' Jim Hickman hitting the only longball, his 12th of the year.

Game Three: Mets 9, Cubs 1
W: Ryan (6-2)
L: Reynolds (0-1)

The Ryan Express comes in and blows away the Cubs in a complete game, with young Nolan striking out six and only allowing five hits to move to 6-2. The Cubs start youngster Archie Reynolds, who doesn't fare well and and is gone in the fifth after surrendering eight runs. Wayne Garrett provides the big bat for the Mets, hitting a grand slam and driving in six while going three for four.

Game Four: Cubs 5, Mets 4

W: Hands (11-5)
L: Seaver (9-6)
S: Regan (3)

A premier pitching matchup between Tom Seaver and Bill Hands in the second game of a doubleheader. Seaver, however, is not sharp, walking four and allowing six runs in seven innings. Billy Williams, having a magnificent season, scorches Seaver for a two run homer in the seventh to lead to an early shower for Tom Terrific. Hands is also not superb, giving up five runs and 12 hits in eight innings but giving the Cubs some needed length in innings pitched. Phil Regan shuts down the Mets in the ninth for his third save. Don Kessinger and Williams both drive in two, while the Mets are led again by Garrett, who goes three for three.

Game Five: Cubs 11, Mets 0
W: Holtzman (10-5)
L: Koosman (4-5)

The Cubs accent their series win by blowing out the Mets in the fifth series game. The game is closer than the score indicates, with the Mets' Jerry Koosman only allowing four runs in his six innings of work and leaving with a 4-0 deficit. But Mets reliever Rich Folkers is again blasted, this time for seven runs total in the seventh and eighth innings. Ernie Banks hits two more homers and now has 12, while Ron Santo knocks his 11th. Kenny Holtzman goes all the way for the Cubs to record his 10th win. 

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