Chicago Cubs Score and Recap (4/30/19): Cubs 6, Mariners 5 – Cubs Play Long Ball to Take Opener in Seattle
The Mariners hosted the Cubs for the first time since 2013 on Tuesday night. Kris Bryant served as designated hitter due to hamstring tightness while David Bote got the start at third base. Cole Hamels took the mound against Felix Hernandez in a battle of veteran pitchers.
Going into the game, the key to success for Hamels was to limit his walks, having issued six free passes in a no-decision in his last start. When Hamels got into a few jams in the 4th and 6th innings, it wasn’t the walks that hurt him but the six hits and the two errors by the defense behind him.
It was shaky at times, but the bullpen limited the Mariners to one more run while the Cubs sluggers took care of the rest. Three home runs were responsible for five of the six Cubs runs, and the long ball twice helped the Cubs erase a one-run deficit. (Box Score)
Why the Cubs Won
When Brandon Kintzler gave up a home run to Edwin Encarnacion, it was the MLB-leading 60th home run of the season for the Mariners. But the Cubs beat them at their own game with home runs from Daniel Descalso, Anthony Rizzo, and Kyle Schwarber. The Mariners developed some threats late, but the Cubs turned some key double plays to limit the damage.
After walking the first batter he faced, Hamels settled in until the 4th inning when he walked two and the defense committed back-to-back errors resulting in two unearned runs.
After Edwin Encarnacion gave the Mariners a 5-4 lead on a long home run off Brandon Kintzler, the Cubs would once again erase a deficit in the top of the 8th. Willson Contreras ripped a double with two outs, and Kyle Schwarber followed with a towering 440 ft home run to right to put the Cubs up for good.
Though the Mariners got the first two men on to start the ninth, Steve Cishek would earn the save to complete 1.1 innings of solid relief work on the night.
Stats That Matter
- Hamels: 5.1 IP, 7 K, 3 BB, 6 H, 2 ER
- Descalso hit the first leadoff home run for the Cubs this season, his second overall.
- Anthony Rizzo went 2 for 3 with a home run, hit by pitch, walk, and his first stolen base of the season
- Kris Bryant only had one hit on the evening, a double to left, but he made hard contact all night. On the double, two lineouts, and a flyout, KB had exit velos of 108.3 MPH, 110.6 MPH, 105.0 MPH, and 105.4 MPH. He’s heating up, folks.
With the Cardinals on a four-game winning streak, it’s important for the Cubs not to lose too much ground before meeting the Redbirds at Wrigley later this week. The Mariners are a tough opponent, so taking at least one of two games is huge. The Cubs finish the month of April at 15-12, a great finish considering they began the season at 1-6.
Jon Lester will get the start Wednesday for the second and final game of the series. First pitch is set for 5:40PM CDT. You can listen on 670 The Score or watch on WGN.