Cubs-Cardinals 2015 series recaps

The Cardinals have the season series edge 11-8, but the Cubs won four of six games in September.

At Cubs, April 5, 7-8: split 1-1, 1 rained out.

The Cardinals spoiled opening day at Wrigley Field, scoring three runs on eight hits off the Cubs' new $155 million pitcher Jon Lester on the way to a 3-0 triumph. Adam Wainwright earned one of his two victories this season before tearing his Achilles. A forecast of rain and cold postponed the second game, but Jake Arrieta pitched seven shutout innings in a 2-0 Cubs victory the next night to provide new manager Joe Maddon with his first North Side victory. Maddon didn't break out the champagne, saying, "That's for the end of the year…when you actually get somewhere."

At Cardinals, May 4-7: Cardinals won 3, Cubs won 1.

The Cubs jumped to a good start in the series opener, scoring five runs in the first inning, but the Cardinals scored four runs in the seventh off Cubs relievers Pedro Strop and Zac Rosscup to win it 10-9. The Cardinals extended their winning streak to eight games with a 7-4 victory in the second game — another loss notched against the Cubs bullpen. But the Cubs snapped the streak behind Anthony Rizzo's three RBIs in a 6-5 victory the next day. Arrieta suffered back-to-back losses for the only time this season, giving up all five runs in the 5-1 loss in the finale.

At Cardinals, June 26-28: Cardinals won 3.

The only sweep of the year went to the Cardinals, who walked off in the opener when Peter Bourjos scored on Mike Baxter's throwing error to the plate with the bases loaded in the 10th inning. Cubs right-hander Donn Roach took the loss in the second game in his only appearance of the year when he gave up four earned runs in the 8-1 setback. The Cardinals improved to a whopping 51-24 with the 4-1 triumph in the finale, the Cubs' fifth straight loss.

At Cubs, July 6-8: Split 2-2.

Lester's duel with former Red Sox teammate and good friend John Lackey highlighted the opener. Lester recorded his first career hit, but Lackey earned the victory thanks to a late surge from his teammates in a 6-0 victory. The Cubs notched their first doubleheader sweep at Wrigley Field since 2003 the next day, starting with a 7-4 victory driven by Rizzo's two-run homer and Chris Denorfia's three RBIs. The Cubs used a three-run seventh for a 5-3 victory in the nightcap. Jhonny Peralta's two-out, two-run homer on a 1-2 pitch from Strop in the ninth inning gave the Cardinals a 6-5 victory in the finale, which included ejections of Cardinals manager Mike Matheny and catcher Yadier Molina.

At Cardinals, Sept. 7-9: Cubs won 2, Cardinals won 1.

Dexter Fowler and Addison Russell each homered and had three RBIs apiece to fuel the Cubs' 9-0 victory in the opener. Rizzo's 100th career homer and Starlin Castro's three-run shot helped the Cubs to an 8-5 victory in the second game. The Cardinals avoided the sweep, using a three-run eighth inning against the Cubs bullpen to negate Lester's solid start. Stephen Piscotty's two-run double pushed the Cardinals ahead for a 4-3 victory.

At Cubs, Sept. 18-20: Cubs won 2, Cardinals won 1.

Castro hit two homers and matched a career high with six RBIs to help kick off the series with an 8-3 Cubs victory. Dan Haren hit Matt Holliday in the helmet with a pitch in the fifth inning, and Cardinals reliever Matt Belisle hit Rizzo in the back of his leg in the seventh. Maddon, angry at what he believed was retaliation, stated in a postgame rant, "We don't start stuff, but we will stop stuff." Cubs pitchers hit three batters in the next game, resulting in the ejection of Maddon and Hector Rondon. Russell capped the Cubs' 5-4 victory with a diving stop and flip to second base for the final out. The Cardinals got the last (regular-season) laugh with a 4-3 victory, but Molina injured his thumb on a key eighth-inning play at the plate.

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