Joc Pederson’s Chicago Cubs had their petty fun torturing the Los Angeles Dodgers this week, recording a three-game sweep at Wrigley Field, which marked the first time Los Angeles has been swept in a series of any length since early 2019.
This wasn’t your average, run-of-the-mill sweep, either. Every game was uniquely painful.
Tuesday’s doubleheader opened with Clayton Kershaw getting smacked and removed in the first inning, while the nightcap featured a game-tying Max Muncy shot off Craig Kimbrel in the seventh, a two-run lead in the eighth and … no victory.
And Wednesday? Wednesday was a rerun of Game 2’s shenanigans.
The Dodgers held a 3-2 lead entering the bottom of the eighth, but Blake Treinen couldn’t hold down the fort, as Pederson scored the tying run on a Javier Baez grounder.
In the 10th, with the aid of the automatic runner, Los Angeles took another lead … only to see Kenley Jansen serve up the tying run once more, which scored on a Joc Pederson shot to deep right.
Pederson flipped his bat with authority as the ball nestled itself … into the webbing of Mookie Betts’ glove. Clearly, the ex-Dodger was extremely ready to toss his bat against his former team, and certainly believe he had added a walk-off dinger to his resumé.
Former Dodgers OF Joc Pederson (and current Cub) bat-flipped a fly out to right.
Was there a message behind this madness? Who knows, but plenty of emotion was certainly involved for the 29-year-old Pederson, who was both squeezed out of Los Angeles this offseason and has struggled and battled injuries since joining the Cubs.
Naturally, Pederson’s return to the diamond came this week of all weeks, and though it seemed like the worst-case scenario for both parties entering the series, the lefty masher came out on top of his former team, bat flip misjudgment excluded.
There’s no doubt Pederson wore his emotions on his sleeve for Wednesday’s contest, and it might’ve made him a little jumpy — or, as the Cubs put it, Pederson was a “mood” throughout the week.
Now that this horrifying series is over, the Dodgers travel to … Anaheim, where they’ll encounter the best player in baseball and an inter-state rival looking to nip at their heels.
Maybe the day off will do them good, because when you’re losing, it truly feels like everyone is your juiced-up enemy.