Adbert Alzolay took the mound against the Brewers for the second time in six days. He came sprinting out of the gate with a 1-2-3 opening frame, needing only eight pitches to retire the side. Through five innings he faced the minimum with six punch outs, one hit allowed, and no walks on 53 pitches (37 strikes). However, in the 6th inning, the Brewers broke through for six runs, three of which were charged to Alzolay who was given the hook by manager David Ross after 68 pitches.
The Cubs’ offense broke through in the 4th inning when Kris Bryant sent a line drive over the wall in left-center. If there’s been a silver lining for the Cubs on offense, it’s been Bryant’s solid start to the season. Tonight, he went 2-4 with an RBI, raising his average to .265.
After six innings, the Cubs had struck out an astounding 10 times, left seven men on base, and recorded only two hits. Javier Baez added two runs on a two-out double in the bottom of the ninth, forcing Craig Counsel to bring in Josh Hader to close the door. The Cubs have now been outscored 21-6 in their last three contests. (Box Score)
Why the Cubs Won/Lost
No offense (again) and a big six-run inning for Milwaukee in the 6th lead to tonight’s loss.
Alzolay was cruising through five before finally running into trouble in the 6th inning when he allowed the first three batters to reach safely, loading the bases with no outs. After getting a ground-out, Alzoloay was pulled by manager David Ross in favor of Andrew Chafin.
The inning completely unraveled from there, as Chafin allowed a bases-clearing double off the bat of Luis Urias who later scored on a wild pitch. After being intentionally walked, Avisail Garcia touched home when Jackie Bradley Jr. sent a triple down the left field line. For good measure, Keston Hiura added an RBI single off the end of his bat and the Brewers suddenly enjoyed a 6-1 lead.
Stats That Matter
- The Cubs offense has the 4th lowest in-zone contact percentage in the majors (84.9)
- They also lead the league in “swing and miss percentage” (32.6)
- This year, Kris Bryant has the highest 1st pitch swing percentage of his career (44.4)
You can only put so much pressure on your pitching staff before they’re bound to fold. The Cubs’ offense has been atrocious and that’s putting it lightly. David Ross needs to find a solution soon.
In game two of the series, Kyle Hendricks (0-1, 3.00 ERA) squares off against Brandon Woodruff (0-0, 2.45 ERA) for the second time this year. First pitch is scheduled for 6:40pm CT on Marquee and 670 The Score.