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#pounditSunday, May 26, 2024

Cubs pitcher had great reaction after dodging a bullet

Shota Imanaga looks to the sky

Just about everything has gone right for Chicago Cubs pitcher Shota Imanaga in his first MLB season, and even he knew he got away with one big mistake during Saturday’s game against the Miami Marlins.

Imanaga recorded his third win of the season when he led the Cubs to a 5-3 victory over Miami at Wrigley Field in Chicago, Ill. The left-hander allowed 2 earned runs on 5 hits through 6 innings. He had 5 strikeouts, one of which came on a pitch that badly missed Imanaga’s intended spot.

Imanaga had Marlins outfielder Bryan De La Cruz in a 1-2 count to begin the top of the fourth inning. De La Cruz swung and missed at an 82-mph breaking ball that was probably supposed to be down and in, but it stayed belt high and had no movement. You could tell by Imanaga’s dramatic reaction that he knew he dodged a bullet:

Imanaga, a former NPB star in Japan, signed a 4-year, $53 million contract with the Cubs in January. He has been outstanding thus far and has a 3-0 record with a 0.84 ERA and 21 strikeouts in 4 starts. De La Cruz had a great opportunity to worsen that stat line a bit, but Imanaga had luck on his side.

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