Spring Training Game Five – Cubs (ss) 2, Royals (ss) 3
WP – David Huff (1-1) LP – Andury Acevedo (0-1, BS 1) Save – Malcom Culver (1)
Addison Russell hit his second home run of the spring, a two-run shot in the fifth. Jason Hammel and Clayton Richard put zeros on the board in the first four innings. But Andury Acevedo stumbled in the sixth and was charged with three runs as the Cubs lost Monday afternoon to the Royals in Mesa.
The Cubs offense managed just five hits. Addison Russell (1-for-3 with a home run and two RBI) launched a two-run homer in the fifth that broke a scoreless tie. Dan Vogelbach (1-for-3 with a walk and a run score) was on board and scored the Cubs other run. Shane Victorino (1-for-2) and Matt Clark (2-for-3 with a walk) collected the Cubs other three hits.
Jason Hammel made his Spring Training debut on Monday and had a good outing. Hammel issued a walk to the first batter he faced before settling in and completing two scoreless innings on Monday at Sloan Park. Hammel surrendered one hit and a walk with a strikeout but no runs in two innings of work.
Clayton Richard was very impressive Monday in relief of Hammel. Richard faced the minimum in two innings of work. Richard actually hit Reymond Fuentes with two down in the third. But with Alex Gordon at the plate, Richard picked off Fuentes from first base to end the inning.
Clayton Richard went out in the fourth and struck out the side in order … Alex Gordon, Eric Hosmer and Salvador Perez. Richard struck out four of the six batters he faced Monday in Mesa.
Hector Rondon made his spring debut. And it was a rather quick fifth inning for the Cubs’ closer. Rondon picked up three outs on three groundballs.
The Royals scored all three runs in the sixth inning off Andury Acevedo and minor leaguer Michael Wagner. Acevedo gave up a leadoff single and issued a two-out walk to Fuentes. After striking out Alex Gordon, Eric Hosmer doubled to left with two down and tied the game at two.
Joe Maddon went to his pen for minor leaguer Michael Wagner with the go ahead run at second base. Salvador Perez singled to center and gave the Royals the lead for good.
Willson Contreras threw out the speedy Terrance Gore trying to swipe second to end the sixth inning.
Carl Edwards Jr. hit a batter, Clint Barmes, in his inning of work, the only baserunner he allowed. Jean Machi and Felix Pena put zeros on the board in the eighth and ninth innings.
Joe Maddon emptied his bench in the sixth inning. Willson Contreras, Matt Clark and Dan Vogelbach walked to load the bases but Kris Negron was unable to at least tie the game. The Cubs managed only one hit from the fifth inning on.
Tommy La Stella left Monday’s game in Mesa in the second inning with right calf soreness/tightness. The Cubs have not provided any further updates on his status.
With Monday’s loss in Mesa, the Cubs slipped to 1-4 in Cactus League play this spring.
The Cubs host the Dodgers on Tuesday afternoon (2:05pm CST). Kyle Hendricks is scheduled to make his first start, second appearance of the spring, against Clayton Kershaw.