By Chris Emma–
LAKE FOREST, Ill. (CBS) — Vic Fangio tuned in just in time.
While the Bears prepare for their Week 6 matchup with the Jaguars, their defensive coordinator took a break from his work late Tuesday evening to see the final frame of the Cubs’ 6-5 comeback win against the Giants in Game 4 of the NLDS.
Continuing a tradition that dates back to last year — in which Fangio proclaimed the Cubs would win it all — he played the role of manager Wednesday. Fangio would’ve brought Giants left-hander Matt Moore back out for the ninth inning, despite his pitch count reaching 120. San Francisco had a 5-2 lead entering the ninth behind a strong effort from Moore, who went eight inning and allowed two runs.
“Steve Carlton, Nolan Ryan, Ferguson Jenkins, what did they know about pitch counts?” Fangio said on Wednesday, tongue in cheek, perhaps. “It’s a shame what’s going on in baseball.”
Fangio, who previously coached in San Francisco, watched as the Cubs scored four runs in the ninth inning off five different Giants relievers. Cubs closer Aroldis Chapman came on in the bottom of the ninth to strike out the side.
During Game on Monday 3, Chapman was called upon for a six-out save. Cubs manager Joe Maddon’s decision backfired as the Giants pulled a comeback of their own to force Tuesday’s tilt.
“A little shaky,” Fangio said of Maddon’s decision.
Fangio also called into question Buck Showalter’s decision to not pitch Orioles closer Zach Britton during the AL wild-card contest last week. Britton had an 0.53 ERA during the regular season and watched from the bullpen, unused, as the Blue Jays walked off for a 5-2 victory last Tuesday.
Of course, none of these three managers have commented on why Fangio’s Bears defense faltered in the fourth quarter of their Sunday loss to the Colts.