Chicago Cubs

The Cubs had the most unconventional way to try to slow down Joey Votto and it did not work

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USA TODAY

The Cubs had the most unconventional way to try to slow down Joey Votto and it did not work

Joey Votto has reached base at least *twice* in 19 straight games.

NINETEEN. STRAIGHT. GAMES. 

He is absolutely on fire and the best way to slow him down would be to simply not show up to the ballpark.

But since the Cubs are in a pennant race and in the midst of a four-game set against Votto's Reds, they don't have the luxury of not showing up.

So how do you get Votto out?

Joe Maddon and his coaching staff went full 12-inch softball, moving Kris Bryant to left-center field, giving the Cubs four outfielders in Votto's fifth inning at-bat. We've seen plenty of infield shifts in baseball over the last few years, but an outfield shift? That's a rarity.

Kyle Schwarber played left-left, Bryant in left-center, Jon Jay in right-center and Jason Heyward in right-right.

Here's photographic evidence:

And what does Votto do?

Grounds one just inside the first-base line and pulls up for a double. He went up against four outfielders and still wound up with an extra-base hit. Of course, even if the Cubs had four infielders, that ball still would've wound up as a double.

Votto is hitting .316 on the season with a .446 on-base percentage, 31 homers and 83 RBI.

Just another day of fun at the ole ballpark for this guy:

The Cardinals set off fireworks for a Kris Bryant home run

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AP

The Cardinals set off fireworks for a Kris Bryant home run

There may be a sleeper cell Cubs fan working the fireworks at Busch Stadium.

Kris Bryant homered in the second inning of the Cubs-Cardinals game on Monday and surprisingly fireworks went off in St. Louis. Bryant made it 5-0 and he was almost at second base when the bang of a set of fireworks was audible on the CSN broadcast.

"And somebody set off some fireworks," play-by-play announcer Len Kasper said.

Jim Deshaies also chimed in on the broadcast with a crack about a Cubs spy.

"There's a mole." Deshaies said. "There's a Cubs spy in the fireworks department here."

A Cubs win eliminates the Cardinals from contention in the NL Central so this is just insult to injury.

Say cheese: Addison Russell smothered in nachos, delivers new batch to fan

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USA TODAY

Say cheese: Addison Russell smothered in nachos, delivers new batch to fan

Addison Russell went from shortstop to waiter on Monday night. 

During the second inning of the series opener between the Cubs and Cardinals, Russell went headfirst into the stands to attempt a Jeter-esque catch, but wound up only with a chip on his shoulder. 

It was such an amazing sequence that you have to see the frame-by-frame version: 

In a classy move, Russell then delivered a brand new plate of nachos to the fan: 

Hope that fan tipped 20 percent.