A great 1998 season for the Cubs. Sammy Sosa had his amazing chase at the home run record with Mark McGwire. Mark McGwire got the home run record, however Sosa receivedthe NL MVP award and the playoff spot. It was Kerry Wood's rookie year, the same year he struck out 20 Astros hitters and won the NL Rookie of the Year. The Cubs rotation also included Kevin Tapani, who won 19 games for the team and Steve Trachsel who picked up
15 win for the 1998 Cubs. Manager, Jim Riggleman led a team with other great players like Mark Grace, Mickey Morandini, Henry Rodriguez and closer, Rod Beck to the Cubs first playoff appearance since the 1989 Cubs team.
Cubs needed to defeat the Giants to earn a playoff spot as the 2 teams tied for wild card spot. The Cubs win that game, however the Atlanta Braves and a strong starting rotation sweep the Cubs 3 games to 0.
September 28, 1998
Wild Card Playoff Game
Cubs & Giants meet at Wrigley Field for wild card play in game. Cubs win 5-3. Gary Gaetti hits 2-run HR
September 30, 1998
NLDS, Game 1
At Turner Field, the Atlanta Braves and John Schmoltz defeat the Cubs in Game 1 of the NLDS. Schmoltz and 2 relief pitcher’s allowed just 5 Cubs hits. Tyler Houston accounted for the only Cubs run with a home run. Braves defeat Cubs 7 to 1 to take a 1 game to 0 Series lead.
October 1, 1998
NLDS, Game 2
A pitcher’s duel between the Braves, Tom Glavine and the Cubs, Kevin Tapani has the Cubs with a 1-0 lead going into the ninth inning. But Javy Lopez hits a home run to tie the game at 1-1. Chipper Jones wins the game in the 10th inning with a walk-off single off the Cubs, Terry Mulholland. Braves lead the Series 2 games to 0 going back to Wrigley Field for a Greg Maddux vs Kerry Wood matchup.
October 3, 1998
NLDS, Game 3
Kerry Wood and Greg Maddux have a great pitcher’s duel going as the Braves managed just one run off Wood when Maddux doubled and scored on a passed ball. The Braves took control of the game after Wood left the game and Terry Mulholland and Rod Beck were brought in the game. Eddie Perez has the big hit with a 7th inning Grand Slam off Beck to help seal the Braves victory and the Series clincher. The Braves sweep the Cubs and end their 1998 season.