CHICAGO – The Cubs welcomed the Brewers to the Friendly Confines on Monday evening, looking to rebound from a weekend sweep at the hands of the Pittsburgh Pirates, but the Brewers would not oblige and handed the Cubs their fourth straight loss.
Ben Zobrist, who got the start at second base over Javier Baez on Monday evening cut the lead in half with an RBI single in the home half of the first inning, making it a 2-1 Milwaukee lead. The Brewers would strike right back in the top of the second inning in the form of a Jeff Bandy solo shot, the second homer allowed by Lackey in as many innings.
In the bottom of the second inning Albert Almora, who leads the team in hitting thus far, continued to stay hot with a two-RBI double to left field, plating Jason Heyward and Miguel Montero to tie the game at 3-3 after two innings. In the top of the third inning, you guessed it, the Brewers would hit their third home run in as many innings when Eric Thames hit his seventh homer of the season to put the Brewers back in front, 4-3.
The back and forth scoring would subside through the middle innings, in fact the Cubs scoring would subside for the remaining innings. In the top of the eighth inning Ryan Braun would drive in Eric Thames to make it a 5-3 game, and Braun would score on a throwing error by Willson Contreras while attempting to steal third base to make it 6-3, where it would stand when the final out was made on Monday evening.
Albert Almora: 1-4, 2B, 2 RBI
Ben Zobrist: 2-4, RBI
Ryan Braun: 3-4, HR, 2B, 3 RBI
Eric Thames: 3-4, HR, RBI, 3 R
Nothing stands out as “good” in this ballgame to me, outside of Almora continuing to hit in his limited opportunities, and maybe the fact that the bullpen only gave up one earned run today, a stark contrast from this past weekend.
The loss is the fourth in as many games, and drops the Cubs under .500, now at 6-7 on the season. John Lackey gave up three bombs, and the Cubs offense failed come up with big hits once again today. While this is likely just a rough stretch that even the best of teams go through during the course of a 162 game season, it’s definitely one that you don’t want to see in April.
The Cubs will send Brett Anderson (1-0, 0.84 ERA) to the bump to attempt to halt the four-game skid on Tuesday evening at Wrigley Field. The Brewers will call upon Jimmy Nelson (1-0, 1.38 ERA) as they look to lock up a series victory over the Cubs.
First Pitch: 7:05 pm (CT)