Chicago Cubs Score and Recap (5/23/22): Cubs 7, Reds 4 – Happ’s Homer-coming Powers W
The Cubs haven’t played the best baseball in the NL this season, but facing a struggling Reds team can make just about anyone feel like contenders. That’s how it worked Monday night as the visitors rode some big hits to victory.
Chicago was able to take the lead in the top of the 4th inning with four runs. Seiya Suzuki doubled and came home when Ian Happ did the same. Later in the frame, Patrick Wisdom came to bat with two on and blasted a three-run homer to right to make it four straight games going deep.
Drew Smyly was cruising along with the 4-0 advantage until running into big issues in the bottom of the 6th. Tommy Pham hit a solo home run to start the scoring and Arístides Aquino followed with a two-run bomb to make it 4-3.
The Cubs wasted no time coming back in the top of the 7th thanks to the red-hot Happ. The switch-hitting outfielder crushed the first pitch he saw for a long three-run homer to restore the big lead.
Aquino hit his second home run in the 8th inning but that was all the damage the Reds would do and David Robertson closed out the win. (Box score)
Why the Cubs Won
When you hit two three-run home runs in a game, your chances of winning go up substantially. It seems like the Cubs are always hitting solo shots, so going yard with men on base was a nice change.
Luis Cessa came on in relief for the Reds with two on and two out in the 7th inning. Happ jumped on a first-pitch slider that was hanging in the zone to give his team much-needed breathing room.
Stats That Matter
- Smyly pitched pretty well but ran out of steam in his final inning: 5.2 IP, 3 R, 4 H, 5 K, and 2 BB.
- Wisdom is the first Cubs player to hit homers in four consecutive games since Anthony Rizzo in 2015.
- Happ will really become dangerous if he starts hitting home runs like he did Monday.
The Cubs lineup looks much better when the ball leaves the park, so it would be nice if they could do that more often. They should be able to keep it going against a beleaguered Reds pitching staff.
Game two of the series is Tuesday at 5:40pm CT as Marcus Stroman takes on Tyler Mahle in a game available on MLB Network (out of market only) and Marquee Sports Network.