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The Chicago Cubs expect the final month of their overachieving season to be a grind.
Apparently ready for the challenge, the Cubs try to build on a impressive comeback victory Wednesday against the visiting Cincinnati Reds.
Following a 2-4 trip and Monday’s 13-6 thrashing at the hands of the lowly Reds, Chicago (75-56) trailed three different times Tuesday before rookie Kyle Schwarber’s two-run, go-ahead homer in the seventh led to a 5-4 victory.
Kyle Schwarber hit the go-ahead home run in the seventh inning as the Cubs trailed three different times before taking the lead for good. It was Schwarber’s 13th home run of the season. The Reds took a 1-0 lead in the first inning as starter Dan Haren gave up his major league-leading 30th home run, this one to Joey Votto. The Cubs tied it in the fourth on a Kris Bryant two-out RBI single, but the Reds scored single runs in the fifth and sixth innings to retake the lead. The Cubs tied it again with another Bryant RBI single followed by Miguel Montero’s base hit to bring home another run. But Eugenio Suarez led off the seventh with a wind-aided home run to give the Reds a 4-3 lead until Schwarber’s heroics put the Cubs in front for good.
The key to the game might have been getting Reds starterAnthony DeSclafani’s pitch count up, as he was throwing well until tiring in the sixth. It allowed the Cubs to get into a mediocre Reds bullpen early enough to come back from several deficits. There’s just too many good hitters to hold the Cubs down when they get that deep into a pen.
Schwarber, Bryant and Montero carried the day on offense as Anthony Rizzocontinued a mini-slump. Bryant had three hits and just missed a home run in his final at-bat while Schwarber’s walk in the fourth inning might have sent him going in the right direction, as he singled and homered in his next two at-bats. Walks get a lot of hitters out of their slumps.
It’s a good win considering the Cubs could just have easily lost the game. They instead picked one game up on Pittsburgh while awaiting the outcome of the Giants score. It was the Cubs’ 75th victory of the season.
A day after making some risky decisions Joe Maddon pulled another head scratcher when he double-switched Addison Russell out of the game with a 2-1 deficit in the sixth inning in favor of Tommy La Stella and Javier Baez, who was making his season debut. Baez took over at shortstop, while La Stella played second base after pinch hitting for the pitcher’s spot the inning before. Russell has 34 extra-base hits coming into the game while La Stella and Baez combined for one. The move did lower the pitcher’s spot in the order but by just one place. Russell didn’t appear injured in leaving the game.
What’s next: The series finale takes place Wednesday afternoon when Jason Hammel (7-6, 3.42) takes on Raisel Iglesias (3-6, 3.92).
ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED BY:.espn.go.com