Game One Hundred Twenty – Cubs 4, Reds 5
WP – Aroldis Chapman (5-4) LP – Shawn Camp (3-6) Save – None
The Cubs battled back and tied the game at four in the eighth but were unable to score another run. Brett Jackson (1-for-3 with a double and a walk) doubled off Aroldis Chapman with one out in the ninth and was thrown out trying to steal third. The game went to the bottom of the ninth tied at four.
The game ended after just two pitches. Xavier Paul pulled Shawn Camp’s first pitch into the right field corner for a leadoff triple and Ryan Hanigan lifted the first pitch into left center past the drawn-in outfield. Paul scored … game over.
Chris Volstad ran his winless streak to 24 games, tied for the sixth longest winless streak in the Live Ball Era. The “one big inning” hurt Volstad once again. The Reds scored three runs in the fourth inning with Mat Latos driving in the third run of the inning. Volstad retired the last eight batters he faced and was taken off the hook for the loss in the eighth.
Chris Volstad threw 98 pitches, 62 for strikes, and allowed four runs on seven hits with a walk and four strikeouts in six innings.
Michael Bowden and Jeff Beliveau kept the Reds off the board for two innings and gave the offense a chance to pull one out.
David DeJesus (3-for-4 with a double, a RBI and two runs scored) had another good game. DeJesus doubled in the Cubs’ first run in the third and scored the tying run in the eighth. Alfonso Soriano (1-for-3 with two RBI and a sac fly) gave himself up twice and drove in a pair of runs. Starlin Castro (1-for-4 with a RBI) plated a run in the Cubs two-run sixth inning and Luis Valbuena (1-for-3 with a double and a walk) reached twice in four at bats.
The Cubs could not take advantage of three Reds’ errors and lost another game they had a chance to win. The Cubs were not charged with any errors Sunday but they committed more mistakes than the Reds … bad baserunning (three costly mistakes), throwing to the wrong base and failing to bunt runners into scoring position. The Cubs finished the game 3-for-8 with runners in scoring position and left four on base in a one-run loss.
To the Cubs credit they never quit Sunday afternoon but in the end too many mental mistakes likely cost them a game.
With Sunday’s loss (9-11 on Sundays), the Cubs dropped to 26 games under .500 with a 47-73 record …
The Reds jumped on Chris Volstad and out to an early lead in the bottom of the first. Zack Cozart reached out and drove a 1-2 pitch just out of the reach of Darwin Barney and into right field. Drew Stubbs flied out to right for the first out. Brandon Phillips hit a slow chopper toward the hole at short. Valbuena cut in front of Castro, threw to second and forced Cozart. Phillips just beat Barney’s throw to first. Volstad missed on a 3-2 pitch to Ryan Ludwick and issued a two-out walk. Phillips took off for third on Volstad’s first pitch to Jay Bruce. Phillips made it easily without a throw … Valbuena was in the shift. Volstad missed with his second offering to Bruce then got away with a mistake. Volstad’s 2-0 pitch was right down the middle. Bruce pounded a single into right, Phillips scored and the Reds took a 1-0 lead. Todd Frazier hit a weak grounder to Barney for the third out … 20 pitches for Volstad in the first, 12 for strikes.
The Cubs did nothing in the second. Latos threw only 25 pitches, 16 for strikes, in the first two innings and not a single ball was hit out of the infield.
Chris Volstad kept the Reds off the board in the second. Ryan Hanigan reached on a one-out single to center (0-2 pitch) but that was all. Mat Latos struck out swinging and Zack Cozart grounded out to short for the third out. Volstad tossed 37 pitches, 24 for strikes, in the first two innings.
After two, the Cubs trailed 1-0.
Steve Clevenger worked a walk to start the third. Chris Volstad sacrificed Clevenger to second and nearly beat out Hanigan’s throw to first. Hanigan bobbled then kicked Volstad’s bunt that hit on the plate and popped high into the air. David DeJesus drove a 2-1 pitch into the gap in left center. The ball hit the track and hopped over the wall in left center. Clevenger scored on the ground rule double and knotted the game at one. Darwin Barney looked at strike three and Valbuena flied out to left to end the inning.
Chris Volstad set down the side in order in the third … 49 pitches for Volstad after three, 32 for strikes.
Alfonso Soriano led off the fourth with the Cubs’ second hit of the game, a single to left center. Starlin Castro lined out to right. Soriano then broke too soon after a 0-1 offering to Bryan LaHair. Latos stepped off and threw to second to nail Soriano. LaHair hit a routine fly into right center for the third out.
The Reds broke the game open in the fourth inning.
Jay Bruce reached on an infield single to start the fourth. Bruce hit a 1-0 pitch off the end of his bat. The Cubs were in the shift and Volstad had the only play. Volstad picked up the ball and made a wild, off balance throw to first that had no chance of getting Bruce. Volstad did not get the call on a 2-2 pitch to Frazier and the floodgates opened. Todd Frazier singled to left on a 3-2 pitch. Bruce was running and made it easily to third. Wilson Valdez pulled the first pitch into left center. Bruce scored easily as Soriano did an excellent job of cutting the ball off … but Soriano threw toward third, instead of second. Soriano had no shot at Frazier and the mental mistake allowed Valdez to advance into scoring position.
Ryan Hanigan lined a 1-0 pitch into right. DeJesus caught the ball, Frazier tagged and scored and Valdez moved up ninety feet as well. Volstad then hung a breaking ball to Mat Latos and the Reds’ pitcher drove the 1-0 offering into right field. Valdez scored, 4-1 Reds. Cozart flied out to left and Stubbs popped out to right to end the inning. Volstad needed 71 pitches to get through four innings, 45 for strikes.
After four, the Cubs trailed 4-1.
The Cubs did nothing in the fifth … and had only one run on two hits with a pair of walks against Latos in their first five at bats.
Chris Volstad set down the side in order in the fifth. Volstad needed 82 pitches, 53 for strikes, to get through five innings.
David DeJesus led off the sixth with the Cubs’ third hit of the game … a single to right on a 3-2 pitch. Darwin Barney pulled Latos’ first pitch toward third. What should have been an around the horn double play turned into an error for Valdez. The Reds’ third baseman bobbled the ball then threw late to second. Luis Valbuena hit a 1-0 pitch back up the middle. Cozart stopped the ball from getting into the outfield but had no play.
Alfonso Soriano stepped in with the bases loaded and no outs. Soriano drove a 1-0 pitch into center. DeJesus tagged after Stubbs caught the ball and scored the Cubs’ second run. Starlin Castro pounded a 1-0 pitch into center. Barney scored and cut the Reds lead to 4-3. Bryan LaHair smacked a 1-2 pitch back up the middle. Cozart was shading him toward the bag, fielded the ball, flipped to Phillips … who caught the ball with his barehand and threw a strike to Frazier to complete the 6-4-3 inning ending double play.
Chris Volstad retired the side in order in the sixth … 98 pitches for Volstad, 62 for strikes.
Brett Jackson led off the seventh with a walk. Steve Clevenger bunted the ball too hard, and did not hustle down the line. The Reds turned a 5-6-3 double play. Anthony Rizzo hit for Volstad and grounded out to second for the third out.
Michael Bowden took over in the seventh and retired Mat Latos on a grounder to short. Zack Cozart singled to right (0-2 pitch) but was erased when Stubbs rapped into a 6-4-3 double play.
After seven, the Cubs trailed 4-3.
David DeJesus led off the eighth with his third hit of the game. DeJesus pounded a 2-2 pitch back up the middle. Cozart made a diving stop but could not get anything on the throw and DeJesus reached on the infield single. Darwin Barney could not check his swing on a 0-2 inside pitch and went around for the first out. Luis Valbuena pulled a 0-1 pitch to deep right. Jay Bruce appeared to haul the ball in but the ball went off the top of his glove and rolled to the wall. DeJesus stopped at third on Bruce’s two-base error. Alfonso Soriano grounded Latos’ first pitch toward third. With the infield back, DeJesus broke and scored the tying run and Valdez threw out Soriano at first. Starlin Castro grounded a 3-2 pitch toward short. Cozart fielded the roller but his throw to first was high and to the homeplate side of the bag. Castro was called safe. Todd Frazier saw Valbuena round third too far … and threw a strike to Valdez and nailed Valbuena to end the inning.
Michael Bowden started the eighth and retired Brandon Phillips on a tap back to the mound. Bowden then walked Ryan Ludwick and Sveum went to his pen for lefty Jeff Beliveau.
Jeff Beliveau struck out Jay Bruce swinging and Todd Frazier looped a 1-2 pitch to Barney to end the inning.
The game went to the ninth tied at four.
Aroldis Chapman struck out the overmatched Bryan LaHair swinging for the first out. Brett Jackson drove Chapman’s first pitch (99 mph fastball) over Ludwick’s head in left. The ball one-hopped the wall and Jackson ended up at second with a double. Jackson took off for third on a 1-1 pitch to Steve Clevenger. Hanigan caught the 99 mph fastball that Clevenger swung through and threw a strike to Valdez. Jackson was tagged out and Clevenger went down swinging on the next pitch to end the inning.
Xavier Paul hit for Wilson Valdez and pulled Shawn Camp’s first pitch into the right field corner. Paul motored around the bases and ended up at third. The coaching staff pulled the infield and outfield in. Ryan Hanigan pulled Camp’s first pitch into left center and over the head of Brett Jackson … game over.
The Cubs open a three-game series Monday night in Milwaukee. Justin Germano is scheduled to face Mark Rogers in game one.
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