Dempster the clear Game 1 Goat for Cubs
He saved his worst for last.
After a solid consistent starting pitcher with the lowest ERA on the staff (outside of Harden), Ryan Dempster walked 7, yes 7, Dodger batters in only 5 innings. Folks, unless you have Albert Pujols, Alex Rodriguez, Jimmy Rollins, and Manny Ramirez all in your lineup, walking 7 batters is a death sentence in any game-much less a playoff game.
The grand slam by James Loney all but sealed the Cubs' fate for yet another year. The Cubs have lost the home-field advantage they worked all summer to achieve. In the blink of an eye-gone. Could it be that Cub fans put too much pressure on Cubs' teams? That when it comes to October, the pressure is just too great to overcome? The Tampa Bay Rays, for example, are nearly pressure-free.
Back in May or June, a 4-2 deficit would have been no big deal. But tonight a 2-run deficit felt like a 10-run deficit. If the weight of the world wasn't on the Cubs' shoulders prior to tonight, it is now. If Derek Lowe could throw 100 sliders to Alfonso Soriano and 100 times he would swing and miss-at the same pitch.
If it doesn't happen this year-when does it happen exactly?
The answer? It doesn't.
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