The Cubs were blown out by the Mets on Thursday, but they had a chance to bounce back in the series opener with the Reds on a beautiful Friday afternoon at Wrigley Field. Instead, Chicago was incredibly sloppy and got dominated by the opposing starter in a second consecutive lopsided defeat.
Justin Steele did not have it Friday and Cincinnati jumped on him in the very first inning. Spencer Steer tripled in a run and Tyler Stephenson singled him home. A 2-0 lead was more than enough for Hunter Greene, who dominated over six hitless innings while striking out 11.
The Reds added another run in the 3rd inning on a Nick Senzel single and rallied for three more in the 4th, including a second RBI single from Stephenson. The road team eventually built up a 9-0 advantage.
When the Reds grabbed the lead early, they put their ace in a position to take the game over and that is just what he did.
Why the Cubs Lost
They were a total mess in this game from the very beginning. This one had a bad starting pitching performance, defensive misplays all over the field, and a complete no-show from the offense.
Stats That Matter
- Steele had his worst outing of the year against a middling Cincinnati lineup, just one of those days: 3.2 IP, 6 R, 5 ER, 10 H, 4 K, and 0 BB.
- No Cubs hitter reached base more than once Friday.
Chicago has been outscored 19-1 the last two days. Their slump is now almost a month long and there are very few signs they are close to breaking out of it. At some point you have to start asking whether this just what this team is David Ross and company are running out of time to turn things around.