The Chicago Cubs (16-11) took another early lead and Yu Darvish made it stand up for the first six innings on Saturday. But the bullpen couldn’t help Darvish out, ultimately completing a 10-6 loss to the Philadelphia Phillies (18-9), via MLB The Show 20.
Jason Heyward was the key man on offense for the Cubs, driving in four runs with a 2-for-4 day. Kris Bryant reached on a single to start the bottom of the 1st and was followed by a fielder’s choice groundout by Anthony Rizzo, a strikeout of Javier Báez, and a walk by Kyle Schwarber. That set up Heyward against Phillies starter Zack Wheeler, and the Cubs right fielder continued his hot start to the season by crushing a three-run homer to right field.
The Phillies responded in the 3rd inning against Darvish when Andrew McCutchen hit a two-out double and their right fielder, some guy named Bryce Harper, hit a two-run home run to center. Heyward helped get one run back in the bottom half with an RBI single to drive home Schwarber and put the Cubs ahead 4-2. That’s where the score would stay until the 7th inning.
Wheeler ended up throwing six innings for Philadelphia with four earned runs, five hits, two walks, and seven strikeouts. Darvish was impressive for his first six innings, allowing just the two runs on three hits and one walk. David Ross sent Darvish, who had been extremely efficient to that point in the game, back out for the 7th inning. That’s where things quickly unraveled for the Cubs.
Scott Kingery started the inning with a single, after which Jean Segura grounded a ball to Rizzo that appeared to be an easy double-play. But as Rizzo turned and threw to second base, the ball slipped out of his hand and went past Báez over toward left field. Schwarber was able to retrieve the ball quickly and hold the runners at second and third, but they’d both come around to score on an RBI double by McCutchen.
With the game now tied and the go-ahead run at second, Ross pulled Darvish in favor of left-handed reliever Danny Hultzen. Harper was up next and Hultzen got him to strike out swinging, but Rhys Hoskins then hit an RBI single to give the Phillies a 5-4 lead. Didi Gregorius then reached on a fielding error by catcher Victor Caratini.
Ross went to Rowan Wick, who responded by walking J.T. Realmuto to load the bases. Next up was Jay Bruce, who lined the first pitch he saw into right field for a three-run triple. Suddenly, the Phillies were ahead by a score of 8-4.
David Bote added a two-run double to help the cause in the 8th, but the Phillies kept adding on as well. In total, Philadelphia scored five runs – four earned – in 2 2/3 innings against the Cubs’ bullpen combination of Hultzen, Wick, Ryan Tepera, and Kyle Ryan. Chicago went into the bottom of the 9th down 10-6 and could not muster a rally against left-hander Jose Alvarez.
Notes: Darvish went 1-for-2 in the game and is now batting .363 (4-for-11) on the season … After a stellar 2019 season with the Cubs after coming over from the San Diego Padres, Wick has struggled badly so far in 2020, posting a 5.78 ERA in 9 1/3 innings … After losing their first two series of the season, the Cubs have won five of their last six series, including their two-game split with the Baltimore Orioles. A win on Sunday will make it six of their last seven.
Heyward – 2-for-4, HR, 4 RBI
Bryant – 2-for-4, 2B, BB
Bote – 1-for-4, 2 RBI
Schwarber – 1-for-3, BB, 2B, 2 R
McCutchen – 4-for-5, 3 2B, 2 R, 2 RBI
Harper – 1-for-4, HR, 2 RBI
Kingery – 2-for-5, HR, RBI
Bruce – 2-for-5, 3 RBI
Winning Pitcher – Wheeler (3-2)
Losing Pitcher – Darvish (4-2)
Save – none
Home Runs – Heyward (6), Harper (5), Kingery (4)