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Cubs’ Yu Darvish caps stellar regular season with shutout against White Sox

Darvish finishes the season 8-3 with a 2.01 ERA, 14 walks and a team-leading 93 strikeouts.

AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh

Yu Darvish has been the anchor of the Cubs rotation and when they needed him most after dropping five of their last six games, he did exactly what he’s done the entire season.

Darvish benefitted from an early lead with the help of three homers from Kyle Schwarber, Willson Contreras and Javy Baez and once he got into a groove, there was no stopping him.

The Cubs’ ace tossed seven-shutout innings in his regular-season finale, allowing just three hits, walking one and striking out five.”

2020 has not only been the best season Darvish has had with the Cubs, but will likely end up being the best season of his career.

The right-hander may likely end up being the runner-up in this year’s National League Cy Young as Trevor Bauer has all but wrapped up the award, but it shouldn’t take away from his stellar season.

While manager David Ross doesn’t have a vote, he knows who he’d cast his ballot for.

“It would go to my guy, what are you talking about?,” Ross said with a big smile. “I’d give all my guys every award I could.”

Darvish finishes the regular season as the Cubs leader in strikeouts and tops among the rotation in earned runs allowed, batting average against and BB/K ratio.

Alzolay to start on Sunday

Right-hander Adbert Alzolay will start for the Cubs on Sunday, replacing left-hander Jose Quintana who was scheduled to make the start.

Alzolay impressed during his outing Tuesday as he struck out seven over four innings of relief and showcased some electric stuff against the Pirates.

“Just I don’t know that [Quintana] will be built up to stretch out, so [we’ll] let him get a look out of the pen before the postseason and then see how we can build him up,” Ross said. “We’ll continue to try to balance him getting his pitches and still being able to get some experience of coming out of the pen.”

Wisdom in, Martinez out

The Cubs selected the contract of infielder Patrick Wisdom prior to Friday’s game. Infielder Jose Martinez was optioned to alternate site South Bend in a corresponding move. To make room for Wisdom on the 40-man roster, left-hander Manny Rodriguez had his contract selected from Double-A Tennessee and placed on the 45-day injured list.

Martinez has had a run of tough luck since being acquired at the trade deadline, going 0-for-21 in 10 games this season. Wisdom was added to the Cubs’ 40-man postseason roster on Thursday.

Chatwood ramping things up, status for postseason unknown

When Tyler Chatwood injured his forearm and was placed on the injured list on Sept. 1, it looked like the right-hander’s season was almost certainly over, but Chatwood’s recovery has gone better than expected. Chatwood will throw a bullpen on Saturday.

“He’s working hard to get back,” Ross said. “He wants to help and I’ll continue to listen to trainers on that. I’ll put my head in there and watch that tomorrow for a minute. See how that goes. I still think he’s got a pretty good bit to go. His heart i isn the right place, though. I’ll tell you that.”