Of all the things I might have predicted for this weekend’s Cubs/Brewers series in Milwaukee, “Alec Mills throws a no-hitter” was very, very low on the list.
But that’s exactly what he did. And this feat was accomplished almost 12 years to the day since Carlos Zambrano threw one in Miller Park (September 14, 2008) — but not against the Brewers, instead against the Astros! — and the Cubs emphatically won the series with a 12-0 thrashing of their division rivals.
Mills was dominant all afternoon. He walked three, struck out five and induced a lot of weak contact, with 10 ground ball outs and several infield popups. He threw a career-high 114 pitches (74 strikes) and recorded his first MLB complete game and shutout. That’s very similar to the style of Kyle Hendricks, “The Professor,” whose approach is similar to Mills’. We’ve called Mills the “Adjunct Professor,” but after a game like this, I think he should be promoted to “Associate Professor.”
Beyond Mills’ outstanding performance, the Cubs offense opened up in varied ways Sunday afternoon, helped along by some Brewers errors, both physical and mental.
The game went scoreless through three innings, and in fact Brewers starter Adrian Houser also no-hit the Cubs through three. After a one-out walk in the fourth, Javier Baez reached on Milwaukee’s first error, and Jason Heyward then put the Cubs on the board with this double [VIDEO].
Now runners are on second and third, and Jason Kipnis hit a ground ball to second. Error number two! [VIDEO]
There’s still only one out, with runners now on first and third. This Victor Caratini bloop single made it 3-0 [VIDEO].
David Bote was hit by a pitch to load the bases, and you know how bad the Cubs have been this year with three runners on. Ian Happ helped them come out of the bases-juiced slump [VIDEO].
The Cubs plated five runs all told in the fourth, all of them unearned due to the two errors.
Schwarber walked, again, leading off the inning. Baez doubled him to third, and one out later Kipnis hit a fly ball to center, scoring one run… oh, wait, Baez showed off his baseball smarts again! [VIDEO]
Schwarber scored, and when Eric Sogard messed around with the ball, looking around as if to throw to second (thinking, perhaps, Baez had left early), Baez just took off for the plate. Time had not been called, so the run counted, though Brewers manager Craig Counsell got himself tossed arguing the play. You couldn’t tell behind his mask, but Counsell looked pretty upset. (It’s his own player he should be upset at, probably.)
Now it’s 7-0 — Kipnis getting two RBI on the sac fly — but the Cubs weren’t done scoring off reliever J.P. Feyereisen. He walked Victor Caratini and Bote made it 9-0 [VIDEO].
The Cubs added runs in the seventh (RBI double by Caratini) and ninth (groundout by Caratini, sac fly by Bote) to make it 12-0.
And then came the bottom of the ninth. Mills got Jacob Nottingham on a foul popup, struck out Tyrone Taylor and then up stepped Jace Peterson [VIDEO].
It’s the 16th no-hitter in Cubs history (13th since the pitching distance was set at 60 feet, six inches in 1893, 12th since 1900) and the first since Jake Arrieta’s second no-no against the Reds, April 21, 2016. I don’t think I need to remind you what else happened for the Cubs in 2016. I will have a complete rundown of all Cubs no-hitters here tomorrow morning at 8 a.m. CT. And, for good measure:
This is the first season in MLB history where both the White Sox and Cubs each threw a no-hitter
I’m so happy for Mills, who has worked hard to nail down a spot in the Cubs rotation and now has a spot in the record books. Great for him, and great for the team, as the Cubs improve to 28-20 and take the weekend series in Milwaukee.
The Cubs will have Monday off and then open a two-game series against the Indians at Wrigley Field Tuesday evening at 7:15. Yu Darvish will face Carlos Carrasco, and TV coverage will be via Marquee Sports Network.
Chicago Cubs, Milwaukee Brewers, Alec Mills, Jason Heyward, No-hitter
Actu monde – US – Cubs 12, Brewers 0: Alec Mills throws a no-hitter!