Heroes: Carlos Pena (home run) Kosuke Fukudome (double) each contributed three hits and bookended a dramatic two-run ninth inning rally off Cincinnati closer Francisco Cordero (2-1) to lead the Cubs (15-17), as Pat Hughes described it, "to their most gratifying victory of the season."
Cubs relievers have not allowed a run in their last 17 2/3 innings over nine games.
I remember fondly throughout my childhood the February day in which my father would bring home a stack of baseball preview magazines.
I would devour those things and have continued the practice into adulthood. All of that reading material has helped me get through those final few weeks without baseball, but I learned long ago that such publications should not be believed as gospel.
The acquisition of pitcher Matt Garza by the Cubs, along with two minor leaguers, from the Tampa Bay Devil Rays in exchange for five prospects - that include right-handed pitcher Chris Archer, outfielders Brandon Guyer and Sam Fuld, shortstop Hak-Ju Lee, and catcher Robinson Chirinos - is a brilliant and gutsy move by general manager Jim Hendry.
Hero: Kosuke Fukudome entered the game with just one hit in 16 lifetime at-bats against Cincinnati starter Bronson Arroyo (14-8), but went 2-for-3 with a two-run homer Saturday.
Hero: Rookie reliever Marcos Mateo had his best of his eight major league outings, striking out all three hitters he faced, in the bottom of the eighth.
Hero: Tom Gorzelanny (6-6) was a tough-luck loser after allowing three runs - all earned - on four hits over seven innings. The left-hander struck out five and walked four.
Hero: Geovany Soto went 3-for-5, scored three times, and knocked in five. Soto hit a three-run homer in the seventh inning off former Cubs right-hander LaTroy Hawkins.
Hero: WGN-TV production chief Bob Vorwald should be proud of Friday's Cubs telecast which included stunning overhead shots of Wrigley Field and the surrounding area on a gorgeous, sunny day. It looked absolutely fabulous in HD. The Cubs' disgraceful effort did not do the telecast justice.