Waubonsie Valley High School graduate Michael Bowden is now a member of the Cubs, and he made his debut with his new team Tuesday night against the St. Louis Cardinals.
Bowden worked a scoreless ninth inning in the Cubs' 3-2 victory in 10 innings. The right-hander entered with the Cubs trailing 2-1, and he was shaky to say the least. Bowden retired his first two hitters, then gave up a double to Shane Robinson and issued back-to-back walks to Daniel Descalso and Rafael Furcal to load the bases. The count went full on Skip Schumaker before the St. Louis second baseman lined out to shortstop allowing Bowden to escape trouble.
Believe it or not, Bowden almost ended up with the win. Bryan LaHair's solo home run in the ninth inning got the Cubs even at 2-2, and the North Siders had runners at first and third with two outs before St. Louis got out of the inning. Would have been a good story had the Cubs won in the ninth and handed the local boy a victory in his first outing with his childhood favorite team.
After throwing 29 pitches (only 13 for strikes), you can understand why Cubs manager Dale Sveum wasn't going to trust Bowden for the 10th. He put in left-hander James Russell, who worked a scoreless frame and earned the win when Alfonso Soriano singled home Tony Campana with the game-winning run in the bottom of the 10th.
With the victory, the Cubs have won two straight over the Cardinals. It's the first series win of the season for the North Siders.