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Big League Stew

Julio Borbon’s phantom hit-by-pitch and six other fun moments from Chicago Cubs-San Diego Padres game

David Brown
Big League Stew

The animation on a perpetual loop of Chicago Cubs batsman Julio Borbon pretending to get hit by a pitch might be better than the video. It emphasizes the momentary delay before Borbon decided to try and sell the umpire that the ball got him. Quicker next time, son. In the video, Yahoo!'s own Angela Sun likens it to a flop in basketball, but it's probably more like a faked injury in soccer.

Though he failed there, Borbon was part of other spectacular and curious events during the Cubs-San Diego Padres game Thursday that deserve some attention:

• With the Cubs clinging to a two-run lead in the eighth, Borbon made an amazing catch while bumping into the padded brick fence in the visiting team's bullpen area. After stumbling over the pitcher's mound and falling on his bottom, Borbon alertly glove-flipped the ball to Anthony Rizzo, who threw to third and nearly completed a 9-3-5 double play on Jesus Guzman.

And that wasn't even the best catch a Cubs player made on the day:

• Rizzo navigated the tarp and avoided hurting himself to make an incredible catch on a pop up in the seventh inning. So many obstacles to avoid on a baseball field.

• Rizzo made another nice catch after tracking a pop-up — this one closer fair ground, not to mention a bat and the Cubs catcher — one batter later.

• Cubs left-hander Travis Wood had a stolen base — the first of his career and a rare feat for any pitcher.

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• But these are the Cubs, and they can't have nice things. Borbon and infielder Darwin Barney let a ball drop into no-man's land for a Yonder Alonso pinch-hit single that keyed San Diego's comeback in the eighth.

• The Cubs looked slothful on defense when Kyle Blanks scored the tying run in the top of the eighth inning on a passed ball. Blanks stopped his break for home after Shawn Camp's pitch got away and caromed around behind the plate, but after catcher Wellington Castillo eased his pursuit of the ball (with his back to fair territory, he probably assumed the runner already had scored) Blanks booked it for home.

Definitely a Cubbie Occurrence there. The Padres won 4-2. Wood deserved better.

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