[July 29, 2014]CHICAGO -- Unlike many of the
players making their way from the minor leagues to the Chicago Cubs,
Tsuyoshi Wada is no youngster.
At 33, he is the second-oldest player on the Cubs' active roster,
but picking up a first major league win is special at any age.
Wada pitched seven strong innings in his third career start to help
the Cubs snap a two-game losing streak with a 4-1 victory over the
Colorado Rockies on Monday.
He received the customary postgame beer shower.
"I very much appreciate that the Cubs used me again after that
outing I had against San Diego; it wasn't very good," Wada said
through a translator. "Obviously, I'm happy about the first win."
Wada (1-1) allowed just one run on five hits and a walk while
striking out six. He gave up the run in the sixth -- on an single by
third baseman Nolan Arenado -- but then came back to work a
It was a far cry from his outing last Wednesday, when he allowed
five runs on five hits and four walks in four-plus innings.
"He commanded the zone," Chicago manager Rick Renteria said. "He
executed pitches and got some big outs when he needed to. He did a
nice job and gave us some innings.
"I thought he had a really good mix of pitches. He was using his
fastball effectively, obviously, and his secondary pitches were
The left-hander exited with a 2-1 lead before the Cubs added two
insurance runs in the eighth inning.
Cubs first baseman Anthony Rizzo went 1-for-4 with two runs batted
in, and third baseman/center fielder Emilio Bonifacio added two hits
and two runs.
Hector Rondon pitched the ninth to pick up his 13th save in 16
Colorado starter Yohan Flande (0-3) gave up two runs on four hits in
6 2/3 innings. The left-hander struck out eight and walked just one,
but it wasn't enough for the Rockies to avoid a second straight
"He got us deep in the game, and that's what we needed tonight,"
Rockies manager Walt Weiss said. "We needed some length from him
because the bullpen is a little beat up right now. He did his part.
He did a heck of a job."
The Cubs have not faced many left-handers this season, and Flande
kept them off balance and off the bases through the first three
Bonifacio led off the fourth inning with a single. Second baseman
Arismendy Alcantara followed with a double to put runners at second
Rizzo hit a soft grounder to second with the infield back, scoring
Bonifacio for the game's first run. After shortstop Starlin Castro
was walked intentionally, right fielder Justin Ruggiano hit a
sacrifice fly to right that was deep enough to score the speedy
Alcantara for a 2-0 lead.
Wada, meanwhile, cruised through the first four innings. He struck out the
side in the first inning and allowed just one baserunner before center
fielder Junior Lake lost a routine fly ball by left fielder Brandon
Barnes in the twilight sky for a gift double with one out in the fifth.
Wada, though, got out of the inning without further damage.
"Because it was the second time in Wrigley Field, I was more
comfortable," he said.
Due to his age, Wada isn't likely to be in the Cubs' plans going
forward. Then again, the organization isn't in a position to turn away
effective pitchers, so he was asked if he thinks he has a future in
"It's not like I'm looking at the big picture right now," he said. "I'm
taking it game by game and not thinking about too far ahead."
Wada pitched in Japan's Pacific League from 2003-11, going 107-61 with a
3.13 ERA in 210 games (207 starts). He underwent Tommy John surgery in
2012, then spent 2013 with the Baltimore Orioles' Triple-A Norfolk
NOTES: Rockies SS Troy Tulowitzki was in Philadelphia on Monday for a
dry needling procedure on his left hip. Basically, tiny needles are
stuck into the area of the injury to spark light blood flow and (the
hope is) promote healing. How effective it was won't be known for some
time, so Tulowitzki's return date is uncertain. "I don't think that
picture's any clearer," manager Walt Weiss said. ... INF Josh Rutledge
was in the Rockies' original lineup but was scratched when he became
ill. ... The Cubs sent INF Darwin Barney, who was designated for
assignment last week, to the Los Angeles Dodgers for a player to be
named. ... Rockies 1B Justin Morneau (neck strain) made a rehab start
Monday for Triple-A Colorado Springs, and he will be eligible to come
off the disabled list Tuesday. "It's possible that he could be with us
tomorrow," Weiss said before the game. "It just depends on how it goes