It appears the patterns of recent years are reappearing early in the simulated season for the Chicago Cubs (1-2). After jumping ahead on Opening Day, the offense went cold and the bullpen blew the lead. On Saturday, the Cubs scored 12 runs in total and never had a doubt. But on Sunday, the offense proved to be inconsistent in a 2-0 loss to the Milwaukee Brewers (2-1), via MLB The Show 20.
Jon Lester started for the Cubs and was shaky in his five innings despite keeping Milwaukee more or less in check. The lefty allowed six hits and two walks, striking out just two batters, but only one run came across the plate against him.
The scoring opened in the bottom of the 5th when Lester walked second baseman Eric Sogard with two outs. Next up was Christian Yelich, who hit an RBI double. That was all the Brewers would need, but they added one more run for good measure. It came in the 6th inning against right-hander Dan Winkler, who was charged with one hit, one run, and two walks in two-thirds of an inning before being bailed out by Rowan Wick.
Brewers starter Adrian Houser was in control of the game, throwing eight shutout innings at the Cubs. Houser allowed six hits and one walk, striking out four batters. He even got into the action on offense, notching the two-out RBI single against Winkler.
Craig Counsell pulled Houser after eight, electing to go to closer Josh Hader for the 9th inning. The Cubs may have felt like seeing anyone but Houser was a blessing, but it didn’t really play out that way. Hader made quick work of the final inning, striking out all three batters he faced and closing out the easy 2-0 win.
Taking the rubber match in the series moves the Brewers to 2-1, while the Cubs fall to 1-2 early in the simulation season. The good news for Chicago is that they come home to Wrigley Field on Monday to start a three-game series with the Pittsburgh Pirates. Following the Pirates on the six-game homestand will be three against the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Winning Pitcher – Houser (1-0)
Losing Pitcher – Lester (0-1)
Save – Hader (2)
Home Runs – none
Brewers – 2-1
Reds – 2-1
Cubs – 1-2
Cardinals – 1-2
Pirates – 1-2