Game Sixty – Cubs 4, Reds 3
WP – Jason Motte (3-1) LP – Tony Cingrani (0-3) Save – None
Kris Bryant started the ninth with a hustle double to left center. Miguel Montero was hit by a pitch and set the stage for Starlin Castro. Castro ripped a 1-0 pitch into center. Bryant scored and the Cubs improved to 16-11 in one-run games this season.
The Cubs found a way to win a game Saturday night that had a rain delay (two hours, 48 minutes) that lasted longer than the nine innings took to play (two hours, 39 minutes).
The Cubs built a 3-1 lead by the end of the fifth inning when the game was put into a rain delay. Kris Bryant (3-for-4 with two doubles and three runs scored), who was in the middle of all the scoring Saturday night, singled to start the second inning and extended his hitting streak to 10 games. Miguel Montero (2-for-3 with a home run, two RBI and a HBP) lifted Mike Leake’s first pitch out to center. The ball landed in the basket and the Cubs took an early lead.
Starlin Castro (1-for-4 with two RBI) hit a grounder to short. But instead of turning a double play, Eugenio Suarez threw to the plate. Bryant was called out but replays showed otherwise and the call was overturned.
Kris Bryant’s baserunning played a huge part in Saturday’s win. Bryant did not assume anything on the bases and two of the three runs he scored were due to him playing the game the right way.
The Cubs pounded out nine hits but no walks Saturday night. Dexter Fowler (1-for-4 with a double), Chris Coghlan (1-for-3 with a HBP) and Mike Baxter (2-for-3) collected hits in the win.
Kyle Hendricks was in the middle of a very good outing before the rains came and delayed the game. Hendricks pounded the strike zone after finding a rhythm in the first inning with Miguel Montero. Hendricks needed only 28 pitches to get through three innings and 23 of those were for strikes.
Kyle Hendricks made one mistake in his rain-shortened outing. Joey Votto hit a homer to left with one out in the fourth inning. Hendricks allowed one run on four hits with no walks and seven strikeouts. Hendricks threw 57 pitches, 43 for strikes, in five innings. And Hendricks became the first Cubs’ pitcher to drop down a sac bunt this season. Hendricks bunted Mike Baxter into scoring position in the second inning.
James Russell took the mound when the game restarted in the top of the sixth. And two batters later, the Reds tied the game on a two-run homer by Eugenio Suarez. Joe Maddon lifted Russell after he gave up a hit to Joey Votto.
Justin Grimm, Travis Wood and Pedro Strop each tossed a scoreless inning in relief of Russell.
Jason Motte pitched out of a big jam in the ninth to pick up the win. A bad hop single opened the door for the Reds with two outs. But with runners on second and third, Skip Schumaker grounded out to Addison Russell to end the inning.
Saturday was a good night for the Cubs’ defense. Addison Russell and Kris Bryant made two excellent plays in the first inning and set the tone for the night. Anthony Rizzo caught Todd Frazier in a rundown between third and home to end the fourth. The Cubs played a clean game.
With Saturday’s win, the Cubs improved to 33-27 on the season.
Kris Bryant led off the second inning of a 0-0 game with a single to left. Bryant extended his hitting streak to 10 games with the base knock. Miguel Montero drove Mike Leake’s first pitch to deep center. The ball landed in the basket just to the left of straight away center. And the Cubs took a 2-0 lead. Castro popped out to center.
Mike Baxter worked a full count before reaching on a single to left. Kyle Hendricks bunted him to second base, the first sacrifice bunt from a Cubs’ pitcher this season. Addison Russell flied out to right (2-1 pitch) to end the inning.
The Cubs lead 2-0 after two innings.
Joey Votto cut the Cubs lead in half with one out in the fourth. Votto went opposite field with a 2-1 pitch from Hendricks. And Votto’s solo shot made it a 2-1 game. Todd Frazier followed with a double down the left field line on a 0-2 pitch. Hendricks struck out Jay Bruce swinging.
Kris Negron rolled a 3-2 pitch toward short. Starlin Castro charged, fielded the ball cleanly and made a strong throw to first. Negron just beat out the play. Anthony Rizzo was aware of Frazier rounding third and threw across the diamond. Frazier was trying to take advantage of the Cubs, as the Reds have done for years. Frazier was caught in a rundown, eventually tagged out by Rizzo (6-3-5-2-5-3) to end the inning. Hendricks made 51 pitches, 37 for strikes, in the first four innings.
Kris Bryant led off the Cubs’ fourth with a rocket off the vines in left. Bryant stopped at second with a double and went to third when Miguel Montero singled to the hole at second. Negron made a nice diving stop and kept the run from scoring.
Starlin Castro rolled over a 1-0 pitch and hit a tailor made double play ball to short. Eugenio Suarez fielded the ball and threw home instead. Barnhart caught the ball and tagged Bryant for the out. Maddon asked for the umps to take a look. And the call was overturned after three minutes and 55 seconds, Bryant scored and the Cubs took a 3-1 lead.
Mike Baxter grounded into a 4-6-3 double play. With Montero at third, Hendricks grounded out to short to end the inning.
After four complete, the Cubs led 3-1.
As the rain started coming down at Wrigley, Hendricks sat the side down in order in the fifth … 57 pitches for Hendricks after five, 43 for strikes.
The second review of the game did not go the Cubs way in the bottom of the fifth. Chris Coghlan appeared to reach on an infield single to first with two outs. After another lengthy delay, the call was reversed and the inning came to an end.
The game was placed in a rain delay after the last out in the fifth with the Cubs leading 3-1.
After a two-hour and 48-minute rain delay the Reds came out swinging against James Russell … and tied the game two batters into the resumption of play.
Skip Schumaker singled to left and Eugenio Suarez smacked a home run into the bleachers in left center. Russell gave up a single to Joey Votto and Joe Maddon went and got him.
Justin Grimm struck out Todd Frazier. A wild pitch allowed Votto to take second with Bruce at the plate. Grimm walked Jay Bruce. Negron popped out to Fowler in right center and Grimm struck out Barnhart to end the inning.
The Cubs did nothing against Manny Parra in the home half … the game went to the seventh all tied at three.
Pedro Strop put a zero on the board in the eighth on his 30th birthday and as the rain increased in the bottom of the eighth, the Cubs were not able to score despite two doubles and an infield single.
Addison Russell led off the eighth with a double to left. Dexter Fowler bunted through Ryan Mattheus’ first pitch. Tucker Barnhart threw to second. And Russell was tagged out. He slipped on the wet infield dirt and created quite the divot. Fowler blooped a double to left two pitches later.
Chris Coghlan grounded out to second and Fowler advanced to third on the play. But Votto had his foot off the bag when he received the throw from Negron. The umps reviewed the call and it was overturned. With runners on first and third with one out, Bryan Price left Mattheus in to pitch to Rizzo. And the gamble paid off. Anthony Rizzo grounded into a 4-6-3 double play to end the inning.
The game went to the ninth tied at three.
Jason Motte made quick work of Negron (flyout to center) and Barnhart (swinging strikeout) to start the inning. Pinch-hitter Chris Dominguez grounded a 0-1 pitch to short. The ball hit the divot Russell created and hopped over Castro into left field. Motte went 3-2 on Hamilton before he singled to center. Dominguez went to third with two outs. Hamilton swiped second but Motte retired his old teammate, Skip Schumaker on a grounder to second to end the inning.
Kris Bryant led off the bottom of the ninth with a hustle double to left center off lefty Tony Cingrani. Miguel Montero was hit by the first pitch he saw. And Castro stepped in with two on and no outs.
Starlin Castro laced a 1-0 pitch into center. Bryant rounded third and slid in safe with the winning run.
The Cubs wrap up the four-game series with the Reds in primetime … Jon Lester versus Anthony DeSclafani on ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball (7:08pm CDT).