Rapid Reaction: Brewers 6, Cubs 5
July, 30, 2013
By Jesse Rogers
CHICAGO -- Here’s a quick look at the Chicago Cubs' 6-5 loss to the Milwaukee Brewers in Game 1 of their doubleheader on Tuesday afternoon at Wrigley Field:
How it happened: Cody Ransom flew out with the tying and winning runs on base in the ninth. Milwaukee took the lead for good with a four-run seventh inning as James Russell couldn’t hold a lead given to him by starter Carlos Villanueva. Russell’s first pitch to Khris Davis left the park to right field with two men on, tying the game at 5-5. A couple of batters later the Brewers moved in front when Jean Segura doubled home Norichika Aoki. The Cubs exploded for five runs in the fifth inning after Milwaukee starter Yovani Gallardo had to leave the game in the middle of an at-bat against Darwin Barney with the bases loaded. Gallardo strained his left hamstring on a pitch. Barney promptly singled off reliever John Axford as did Welington Castillo, Villanueva and David DeJesus. The Cubs led 5-2 after five but the lead evaporated in the seventh.
What it means: The Cubs offense only woke up thanks to some good fortune with Axford entering the game cold. Other than that fifth inning the Cubs haven’t scored a run since the seventh inning on Sunday in San Francisco. Junior Lake went 0-for-5, steadily having worse at-bats after hitting the ball hard his first two times up. The Cubs are getting their hits -- just not with men on base. They had 12 total in Game 1 but only in the fifth did they get one with a runner in scoring position. Russell followed Pedro Strop's mediocre performance on Monday as a taxed bullpen is starting to show some holes.
Outside the box: Anthony Rizzo was on base four times with two walks and two hits while Castillo had three hits and a base on balls. Villanueva pitched his longest (6.1 IP) stint since returning to a starting role.
What’s next: Newly acquired right-hander Jake Arrieta makes his Cubs debut in the nightcap of the doubleheader as he’ll face Tyler Thornburg of the Brewers.