Game Ninety-One – Cubs 4, Reds 5
WP – Ryan Mattheus (1-1) LP – Justin Grimm (1-3, BS 1) Save – Aroldis Chapman (19)
The Cubs took a 4-3 lead into the sixth inning. A two-out walk to Todd Frazier put the tying run on base and Jay Bruce launched the Reds third home run of the game, a 456-foot blast out to right that put the Reds ahead for good. The Cubs wasted chances in the seventh and eighth innings and dropped the opener in Cincinnati on Monday night.
Once again the Cubs could not come up with the big hit when they needed it. The Cubs were 2-for-11 with runners in scoring position and left nine men on base. Brandon Phillips took a hit away from Jorge Soler in the seventh that would have tied the game and Kyle Schwarber (1-for-4 with a walk and a run scored) smoked a ball to right with the bases loaded in the second inning, but there were other scoring opportunities the Cubs did not cash in. And at the Great American Launching Pad no lead is safe.
Anthony Rizzo (0-for-3 with a sac fly RBI and a walk) gave the Cubs an early lead with a sac fly in the first inning that plated Dexter Fowler (2-for-3 with two walks and a run scored). The Cubs put a crooked number on the board in the fifth. The Cubs scored three runs on a Kris Bryant (1-for-5 with a double, a walk, a RBI and a run scored) ground rule double and a two-out double by Jorge Soler (1-for-4 with a double and two RBI).
Addison Russell (2-for-3 with a walk and a run scored) looked a lot more confident Monday night at the plate than he has in a while. Russell recorded his first multi-hit game in almost a month (June 24).
Clayton Richard had a solid outing. Richard made four mistakes and it cost him and the Cubs three runs. Richard served up solo home runs to Todd Frazier and Marlon Byrd. Richard walked Joey Votto to start the third inning and he scored on a wild pitch.
Clayton Richard turned the game over to Justin Grimm with the bases empty and two outs in the sixth … and the Cubs led 4-3 at the time he made his way to the dugout. Richard received a no decision after allowing three runs on four hits (two home runs), a walk, a wild pitch and a strikeout. Richard made 70 pitches, 45 for strikes, in 5 2/3 innings.
Justin Grimm issued the walk to Todd Frazier, served up the home run to Jay Bruce and took the loss.
Neil Ramirez struggled with his command in the seventh and left with runners on the corners and one out. Travis Wood did an excellent job of pitching out of the jam. Wood struck out Billy Hamilton and got Brandon Phillips to ground out to Bryant for the third out.
Rafael Soriano made his Cubs’ debut in the eighth … and it was a shaky debut at best. Soriano issued a walk to Joey Votto and gave up a ground rule double to center to Jay Bruce but he wiggled out of the jam without allowing the Reds to tack on. Soriano’s lack of velocity (low-90s fastball) was rather concerning.
With Monday’s loss, the Cubs slipped to 49-42 on the season.
Dexter Fowler led off the game with a single to center on a 3-1 pitch. Kyle Schwarber lined a 1-1 pitch into right for a single and the Cubs had runners on first and second with no outs. Kris Bryant rolled Michael Lorenzen’s first pitch to the hole at short. Suarez fielded the ball cleanly and forced Schwarber at second base. Bryant beat Phillips’ throw to first.
Anthony Rizzo stepped in with runners on the corners and lifted a 1-0 pitch to center. Hamilton caught the ball. Fowler tagged and scored … 1-0 Cubs. Bryant also tagged up and he advanced to second on the play. Jorge Soler was caught looking at a 3-2 pitch to end the inning. Michael Lorenzen threw 19 pitches in the first inning, 10 for strikes.
Clayton Richard retired Brandon Phillips on a grounder to short and Joey Votto on a grounder to Rizzo for the first two outs. Todd Frazier smoked Richard’s first pitch over the wall in center and tied the game at one. Jay Bruce popped out to Rizzo to end the inning. Richard made 15 pitches in the opening inning, 10 for strikes.
And after one complete, the game was tied at one.
The Cubs could not cash in on Michael Lorenzen’s command issues in the second inning. Clayton Richard walked with two outs and jogged to second on a single to center by Addison Russell. Dexter Fowler took a borderline 3-2 pitch for ball four and loaded the bases with two outs.
Kyle Schwarber hit a bullet to right (1-2) but Jay Bruce did not have to move and the Cubs left the bases loaded in the second inning. Michael Lorenzen needed 48 pitches, 25 for strikes, to complete two innings.
Clayton Richard set the Reds down in order in the second.
The Cubs and Reds were knotted at one after two innings.
Joey Votto walked to start the Reds’ fourth as Richard started struggling with his command. Todd Frazier singled to left (2-2 pitch) and put two on with no outs for Bruce. Richard fell behind the Reds’ right fielder 2-0. Bruce pulled the third pitch toward the hole at second. Rizzo picked the ball and started a 3-6-1 double play. Votto stopped at third.
Richard’s first pitch to Byrd hit well in front of the plate and skipped past Schwarber. Votto scored, 2-1 Reds. Marlon Byrd drove a 2-0 pitch out to deep right. And his solo shot gave the Reds a 3-1 lead. Suarez grounded out to short to end the inning. Richard made 57 pitches, 35 for strikes, in the first four innings.
The Reds led 3-1 after four innings.
Addison Russell started the fifth with a single to right (1-2 pitch). Dexter Fowler pulled a 1-2 pitch into right center. Russell went to third but Billy Hamilton threw a strike to Suarez covering second base and Fowler was tagged out … it really wasn’t close. Kyle Schwarber walked and put runners on first and third with one down.
Kris Bryant drove a 2-2 pitch to right center. The ball hit on the track and hopped into the stands. Russell scored on the ground rule double, 3-2 Reds. With runners on second and third and one out, Rizzo struck out swinging (0-2 pitch).
Jorge Soler picked up Rizzo. Soler lashed a 1-2 pitch from Lorenzen down the first baseline. The ball rolled toward the corner and both Schwarber and Bryant scored, 4-3 Cubs. Soler slid in safe at second with a double. Chris Coghlan lined out to Frazier at third base to end the inning.
Clayton Richard retired the Reds in order in the fifth … 65 pitches for Richard after five, 41 for strikes.
The Cubs led 4-3 after five innings.
Ryan Mattheus replaced Michael Lorenzen for the sixth inning. Mattheus set the Cubs down in order.
Brandon Phillips singled to left off Richard to start the sixth. Maddon left Richard in to face Votto. Richard got the ground ball and the Cubs turned a 4-6-3 double play. Maddon made the slow walk and called in Justin Grimm to face Frazier.
Justin Grimm did not throw strikes and walked Frazier, just cannot walk batters at the Great American Launching Pad. Jay Bruce obliterated a 1-1 pitch from Grimm. The ball traveled 456 feet and the Reds took a 5-4 lead. Byrd struck out swinging to end the inning.
The Reds led by one after six innings, 5-4.
And that was the final score. The Cubs put two runners on in the seventh and wasted a leadoff double by Chris Coghlan in the eighth before Aroldis Chapman made quick work of Schwarber, Bryant and Rizzo (13 pitches) in the ninth inning.
Jason Hammel will look to put the Cubs back in the win column on Tuesday night (6:10pm CDT) against Reds’ rookie right hander Raisel Iglesias.