CHICAGO -- As the eighth inning began at Wrigley Field here Sunday night, you could just imagine members of the Giants and Mets organizations shouting at their televisions as Cubs manager Joe Maddon experimented a little with his bullpen matchups against the Cardinals rather than just going for the jugular.
Instead, Maddon seemed intent on finding out what right-hander Justin Grimm was capable of, and at one point in the inning, after the Cardinals started to rally, Grimm was throwing curveball after curveball with the tying run at third -- and catcher Willson Contreras smothered them all.
In the end, the Cardinals lost and fell back to a half-game down in the NL wild-card race. There was some momentary relief for the Giants and Mets in the intense three-team race that has developed for the two wild-card spots.
The wild-card watch continues Monday as some big series begin:
Indians at Tigers (four games)