Just hours after he was recalled from the minor leagues, Jake Arrieta put together one of the best starts of his entire MLB career.
The right-hander threw 7 shutout innings against the high-powered St. Louis Cardinals, and in the process, led the lowly Cubs to a 7-0 victory. In his 7 frames, Arrieta allowed only 2 hits and 2 walks while striking out a batter per inning. With the performance, he lowered his ERA to a sparkling 0.69 with the Cubs, and for the season, his previously dismal ERA is now a more respectable 4.91.
Of course, the Cubs offense also produced a great deal against St. Louis starter Jake Westbrook. The team held a 6-0 lead before Westbrook departed in the 7th inning, and even Arrieta contributed an RBI thanks to a successful sacrifice bunt. From there, Arrieta handed the baton off to James Russell (who churned out a 1-2-3 inning in the 8th) and Blake Parker for the finishing touches on a win.
In the grand scheme, a shutdown performance from a Cubs pitcher, when they are 53-68 in August, isn’t exactly front page news. However, Arrieta has the pedigree of a big-time prospect in his favor, and if this represents his true “ceiling”, he could be a part of the future plans of the Cubs.