After Saturday’s 10-1 blowout loss, the Chicago Cubs needed a win to split the series in Cincinnati and maintain a lead of at least 1 1/2 games in the Central Division. Jon Lester, who got crushed in his last start, took the hill for the Cubs in the series finale.
The Reds took an early 3-0 lead against Big Jon, while the Cubs were unable to get on the board against Reds ace Luis Castillo, that was until the 7th inning. Castillo finally ran out of gas in the 7th and Reds reliever Michael Lorenzen was unable to record the final out to end the Chicago threat, giving up a go-ahead three-run blast to Kris Bryant (Box Score).
Why the Cubs Won
The Cubs stayed patient against Reds’ ace Luis Castillo, who threw a very good game but finally showed cracks in the 7th inning. Their patience paid off when they registered two hits and scored a run in the 7th, driving Castillo out of the game.
Stats that Matter
- Lester had a nice bounce back game: 5.0 IP, 5 H, 3 R, 3 BB, 7 K
- Pedro Strop recorded his 10th save of the year in his second appearance since returning from the IL.
- Ian Happ provided insurance with his fourth home run of 2019 in the 8th inning against Amir Garrett. He is hitting .300/.391/.650 with an OPS of 1.041 in 46 PA since his call up.
Today’s victory allowed the Cubs to split the series in Cincinnati and avoid yet another road series loss. This win gives them a little bit of breathing room, but not much.
The Cubs head to Pennsylvania for the next leg of their ten-game road trip, with three games in Philadelphia following on off-day on Monday. José Quintana (10-7, 4.23 ERA) will take the mound for the Northsiders at 6:05 PM CT. The game can be seen on NBC Sports Chicago and MLB Network (out-of-market only), and heard on 670 The Score.