CHICAGO –– Remorse never crossed John Lackey’s mind Friday as he reflected on whether he contributed to his ejection in the fifth inning of an 8-2 victory over the Cardinals.
But then how do you acknowledge something you don’t understand?
“Not really, no,” Lackey said in the Wrigley Field interview room when asked if he had any regrets. “It was a pretty big spot right there and it cost me a big-league win and those don’t grow on trees.”
A seven-run sixth inning that led to a fourth straight victory almost overshadowed Lackey letting his team down on a day hitting again bailed the Cubs out of a crisis of their own making.
In the fifth inning of a 1-1 game with playoff implications, Lackey threw a 2-2 breaking pitch to Cardinals pitcher Carlos Martinez that caught the outside corner of the strike zone. They could see it was a strike from the Gateway Arch in St. Louis. Even Martinez started walking away like someone who had just struck out.
Home plate umpire Jordan Baker called the pitch a ball.
“A big spot and huge game and he missed the pitch,” Lackey said.
It indeed was an embarrassingly bad call the…