The Cubs and Brewers played the rubber match of their opening series at a sunny Wrigley Field Sunday afternoon. The weather was about the only pleasant thing for Chicago as the road team rolled to a blowout victory.
Nico Hoerner and Dansby Swanson combined to get their team on the board in the bottom of the 1st inning. Hoerner singled, stole second, and came in to score on Swanson’s seventh hit of the season. After the Brewers tied the score in the 2nd, Patrick Wisdom took Eric Lauer deep for a go-ahead solo home run.
— Chicago Cubs (@Cubs) April 2, 2023
Jameson Taillon was a little shaky in his first start as a Cub and was also the victim of some perfectly placed fly balls that fell in for hits. The big right-hander only made it through four innings, but the damage could’ve been worse than the 3-2 deficit the Cubs faced when he came out of the game.
Milwaukee broke it wide open against Julian Merryweather in the top of the 6th. A pair of walks and a single loaded the bases for Jesse Winker, who hit a two-run single. Two more bloop singles and a sacrifice fly put the Brewers ahead 8-2.
Wisdom hit his second solo home run in the 7th inning and the Cubs were down 9-3. Chicago loaded the bases in the 8th but only got two runs out of it and they went on to drop the game by a score of 9-5. (Box score)
The Cubs had been able to stave off disaster despite a bunch of baserunners in the early innings. They did not get so lucky in the 6th and paid for the two walks in the frame.
Why the Cubs Lost
They played a pretty sloppy game and gave the Brewers way too many chances to score.
Stats That Matter
- Taillon worked a bunch of deep counts and had to leave early: 4 IP, 3 R, 7 H, 2 K, and 1 BB.
- The power-deficient Cubs could definitely use consistent pop from Wisdom.
- Adbert Alzolay was impressive in two scoreless innings Sunday.
While some of the Cubs’ struggles on Sunday were just bad luck on perfectly placed hits, this is a team with very little margin for error. Falling behind will not be a successful strategy too often for Chicago in 2023.