Game Ninety-Six – Cubs 1, Brewers 6
WP – Zach Davies (7-4) LP – John Lackey (7-7) Save – None
John Lackey struggled with his command again and allowed three runs in six innings on two home runs. Mike Montgomery made his Cubs debut in the eighth inning and served up a three-run homer to lefty Kirk Nieuwenhuis, his second blast of the game. The Cubs managed just one run off Zach Davies and lost Saturday night in Miller Park.
There were very little positives from Saturday night’s loss. The Cubs allowed a bad team to blow them out. While it was only a five-run loss, at no time did it feel like the Cubs were in the game.
John Lackey’s final line might say otherwise, but his performance Saturday was anything but a quality start. Lackey missed his spots, elevated fastballs and pitched from behind in the count a majority of his outing. A better offensive team would have done more damage than the Brewers with the way he pitched.
John Lackey ended up throwing a season-high 115 pitches in six innings, 76 for strikes. All three runs Lackey allowed were on a pair of home runs, a two-run shot on the 12th pitch of the at-bat by Jonathan Lucroy in the first inning and a solo shot to center by Kirk Nieuwenhuis in the fourth. Lackey allowed five hits and two walks while striking out five in the loss.
The Brewers lit up Cubs’ pitching. All six runs the Brewers scored on Saturday night were on home runs. And the Cubs allowed a sub-.200 hitter to launch two home runs and drive in four runs. Kirk Nieuwenhuis teed off on Cubs pitching again. The second shot, a three-run homer in the eighth to left off lefty Mike Montgomery, in his first appearance with the Cubs, just added to what was already a frustrating night.
The Cubs offense basically did nothing against Brewers’ rookie right-hander Zach Davies. The Cubs managed only two hits, a double by Anthony Rizzo (1-for-4 with a double) and an infield single by Kris Bryant (1-for-4) in the first six innings against Davies. The Cubs finally put a run on the board in the seventh.
Ben Zobrist (2-for-4 with a run scored) led off the seventh with a single to right center. After Willson Contreras lined out to center, Craig Counsell went to his pen for lefty Will Smith. Jason Heyward (1-for-4) singled to center and put runners on the corners with one down.
Addison Russell (1-for-3 with a walk and a RBI) singled to center. Zobrist scored and made it a 3-1 game. With runners on first and second with one out, Javier Baez (0-for-3) struck out swinging. Matt Szczur hit for Lackey and grounded out to short to end the inning.
The Cubs scored one run on six hits, five singles and a double from Rizzo, and two walks. And the Cubs finished the game 1-for-7 with runners in scoring position while leaving six men on base.
With Saturday’s loss, the Cubs slipped to 58-38 on the season.
The Cubs offense will not get a break on Sunday afternoon. Jon Lester faces Junior Guerra in the series finale at Miller Park.