South Bend, IN - The South Bend Cubs finished their 2023 season just as they started it; With a series win against the Quad Cities River Bandits. Back on Opening Weekend in April, the Cubs swept Quad Cities, and in this second week of September, South Bend took five of
South Bend, IN - The South Bend Cubs finished their 2023 season just as they started it; With a series win against the Quad Cities River Bandits. Back on Opening Weekend in April, the Cubs swept Quad Cities, and in this second week of September, South Bend took five of six games away from their West Division rival and won the season finale by a final of 8-1.
Michael Arias got the start for the Cubs, and immediately received some run support in the bottom of the 1st inning. South Bend’s offense this week was ferocious, timely, and clutch. Especially with the 26 runs on Wednesday night.
Things started in the 1st inning with an Ezequiel Pagan double, and then Kevin Alcántara ripped a base hit past the diving River Bandits second baseman for the game’s first run. The offense continued to rake when ‘The Jaguar’ did the same exact thing in the 3rd inning, and then Moises Ballesteros got him in on a single. Ballesteros later scored on a wild pitch, and South Bend had the 3-0 advantage.
Arias left the game due to injury after 2.1 innings, but he did not allow a run, even with five walks. He did strike out five batters.
James Triantos added an RBI sacrifice fly in the 6th. Then in the 7th, Jacob Wetzel pinch-hit and double home Pagan for a 5-1 lead. Alcántara’s big day continued as well as he crushed a line drive laser home run over the right field wall, his 12th of the season.
Ed Howard produced the final Cubs run, on a sac-fly in the 8th plating Luis Verdugo. With two hits today, Verdugo finished his season on a 20-game on-base streak. Alcántara was on base for 15-in-a-row to end 2023.
On the mound out of the bullpen, Angel Gonzalez worked 1.2 scoreless innings. Derek Casey fired two frames, giving up a run. And then Yovanny Cabrera worked two scoreless and hitless innings to earn the win.
Michael McAvene recorded the final three outs, and got the help of his first baseman Liam Spence on a diving, sprawling catch in foul ground on the first base side to close it.
The Cubs finished the season with a record of 57-73, and now leave South Bend following an exciting summer in South Bend.
Thanks to all the great South Bend Cubs along the way. It was such a fun year.