Adrian Sampson makes game-turning defensive play in Cubs’ win

BALTIMORE – Cubs pitcher Adrian Sampson checked over his right shoulder as he crashed the bunt up the first-base line and spotted the Orioles’ Austin Hays closing in on home plate.

Sampson wouldn’t have enough time to transfer the ball from his glove to his hand. So, he scooped up the ball and flipped it to catcher Willson Contreras all in one motion to get the out at the plate.

In the Cubs’ 3-2 win over the Orioles on Thursday, Sampson threw 5 2/3 shutout innings and recorded six strikeouts. But the highlight of his outing was a play with his glove, not his arm.

The play at the plate in the fifth inning swung the momentum from the Orioles to the Cubs. Baltimore had started to string some hits together against Sampson. Hays doubled, and Rougned Odor moved him to third base with a dribbling infield single – the kind of base hit that could have been deflating.

With one out, in a scoreless ballgame, Orioles runners stood on the corners. Jorge Mateo laid down a sacrifice bunt in a patch of grass that only Sampson could reach in time. And Sampson delivered.

After a review confirmed the out call at home, Sampson induced a pop-out in foul territory to end the fifth inning.

In the top of the sixth, Contreras launched a solo homer the opposite way to break the scoreless tie.

Contreras hit another home run two innings later, making the game Contreras’ 10th multi-homer effort as a catcher, moving him past Jody Davis into second all-time among Cubs catchers, behind Gabby Hartnett (14).

Rookie reliever Brandon Hughes was credited with his first major-league save.

Hermosillo to start rehab assignment

Cubs outfielder Michael Hermosillo was scheduled to start a rehab assignment in the Arizona Complex League on Thursday, a significant step in what’s already been a long recovery from a left quad strain. He was penciled in as the designated hitter in his first rehab game. Hermosillo, on the 60-day injured list, has been sidelined by the injury since early May.

Read More

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.