The Chicago Cubs gave a disappointing offensive effort on Friday night versus the Cincinnati Reds. Although starting pitcher Yu Darvish was able to go six innings with nine strikeouts, the Cubs notched only five hits and ultimately lost 5-2.
Nick Castellanos continued his hot hitting with a solo home run in the first off of Reds starter Trevor Bauer and the Cubs took an early 1-0 lead.
Darvish struck out the side in the bottom half of the first, with Jesse Winker, Joey Votto, and Eugenio Suárez set down in order.
The Reds pulled ahead of the Cubs 4-1 with a home run each in the second, fourth, and sixth innings. Aristides Aquino drove in two runs with a homer in the second, Suárez hit a one-run shot in the fourth, and Votto hit a one-run homer in the sixth.
Tony Kemp pinch hit in Darvish’s spot in the seventh inning with two outs after a strikeout from Kyle Schwarber and a ground out from Victor Caratini. Kemp was called out on strikes for the third out.
Steve Cishek entered the game in relief of Darvish in the bottom of the seventh. Darvish went six innings with four hits, four runs (all earned), no walks, and nine strikeouts. Cishek faced Aquino in leadoff, who grounded out back to the pitcher to first. Nick Senzel singled, and José Peraza hit an RBI single after a ground out from Tucker Barnhart. The inning ended on a strikeout from pinch-hitter Brian O’Grady and the Reds now leading 5-1.
The Reds sent Michael Lorenzen to the mound in the eighth inning and he immediately walked Jason Heyward and Castellanos. Kris Bryant singled to load the bases, and Lorenzen was then pulled in favor of Amir Garrett. Garrett hit Anthony Rizzo with a pitch to bring in a run and lessen the Reds’ lead to 5-2. Javier Báez grounded into a force out, with Castellanos out at home. The Cubs would score no further runs, with Ian Happ striking out swinging and Schwarber grounding out to first.
Derek Holland replaced Cishek in the bottom of the eighth and faced pinch-hitter Philip Ervin, who lined out to center field. Votto grounded out and Suárez struck out swinging to end the inning.
Caratini led off the bottom of the ninth against new Reds pitcher Raisel Iglesias and grounded out, second to first. Jonathan Lucroy pinch hit and was called out on strikes for the second out. It was up to Heyward to keep the hope alive, and he came through with a double. Unfortunately, Castellanos popped up to first to end the game.