Published May 06, 2013
| Sports Network
Historic Wrigley Field gets its fair share of visitors each year, but the ballpark is in the midst of a stretch it hasn't seen in nearly 53 years.
With Monday's makeup game against Texas, Chicago continues a span of hosting three different teams in three straight days, though the Rangers will have a very familiar look to Cubs starter Scott Feldman.
The Cubs were scheduled to host the Rangers for three straight games from April 16-18, but the middle contest of that set was postponed due to the forecast of heavy rain. Chicago then won the finale the following day to even the set at a game a piece.
With the Rangers coming to town one day after the Cubs concluded a three-game set with the Cincinnati Reds, and Tuesday marking the start of two straight versus the St. Louis Cardinals, Wrigley Field will play host to three different teams in three straight days for the first time since Aug. 21-23, 1960.
The Cubs played a doubleheader with the Giants, hosted the Reds the following day and then began a series with the Pittsburgh Pirates to cap that stretch.
Another result of this makeup is that the 30-year-old Feldman will get a chance to face his former club for the first time.
A 2003 draft pick by the Rangers, Feldman often served as a valuable long reliever for Texas and also made 101 starts in his 204 career appearances with the club. He made 21 starts in 29 appearances with Texas last season, going 6-11 with a 5.09 earned run average before signing with the Cubs as a free agent.
Feldman never threw a complete game with the Rangers, but finally achieved the feat for the first time on Wednesday in a win over the San Diego Padres. Feldman scattered a pair of runs as two of the three hits he allowed were solo homers. He gave up one to Jedd Gyorko to begin the eighth inning and yielded another to Chase Headley with one out in the ninth.
However, the righty got a ground out and then notched his career-high 12th strikeout of the game to finish off the contest, which also featured an RBI double by Feldman in the second.
"It's something I've been wanting to do for a while," Feldman said of getting a complete game. "It always seemed like my pitch count got up or I got taken out before that could happen. I think originally the plan was for me to throw eight. I went back and asked (manager Dale Sveum) if I could get a crack at a (complete game). I'm thankful he let me go back out there to try to get it and didn't take me out after I gave up that home run to Headley."
Feldman is 2-3 on the season with a 3.34 ERA.
The Cubs homestand got pushed to 10 games with this makeup contest and they are 2-5 on the residency after getting swept in three-games by the Reds. Sunday's 7-4 setback was Chicago's fourth in a row overall.
Alfonso Soriano, who hit two homers in Saturday's loss, swatted a two-run double for Chicago and David DeJesus went 2-for-5 with a run scored.
Edwin Jackson was tagged for four runs and eight hits through five innings to remain winless at 0-5 in 2013.
"I felt pretty good today, couldn't avoid the big inning," Jackson said.
Texas got a big hit in Sunday's 4-3 win over the Boston Red Sox as Adrian Beltre knocked home the game-winner with a two-out single in the bottom of the ninth to score Elvis Andrus from second. That gave the Rangers a big three- game sweep of the AL East leaders.
"It's three games. We're not going to get overwhelmed by winning three," Rangers manager Ron Washington said of the sweep.
Still, Washington's club is 20-11 on the season, tied with the Red Sox and Cardinals for the best record in baseball. It also matches Texas' best 31-game start in club history, accomplished in 1996 and 2012.
Nelson Cruz and Mitch Moreland both hit homers in Sunday's win to help Texas come back from an early hole as ace Yu Darvish allowed just three hits, but two were early homers. Darvish was otherwise solid in a seven-inning no- decision, matching a personal best with 14 strikeouts while throwing a career- high 127 pitches.
Ian Kinsler went 1-for-4 in the win and is hitting .417 over an 11-game hitting streak.
Texas rookie Nick Tepesch will face a team from the National League for the first time as he makes his sixth career start this evening.
The 24-year-old is 2-2 with a 3.54 ERA and is coming off a rough outing versus the Chicago White Sox on Wednesday. In taking a loss, Tepesch gave up a career-high five runs on eight hits over 6 2/3 innings. He was touched for a pair of homers in that deciding seventh frame of a 5-2 setback.
"I made a few bad pitches, but that's part of the game," the right-handed Tepesch said. "You learn from those mistakes."