CINCINNATI -- The Cincinnati Reds sent nine batters to the plate in both the first and seventh innings, scoring four runs in each while rolling to a 9-1 win over the Chicago Cubs in the first game of their day-night doubleheader at Great American Ball Park.
How it happened: The Reds needed just 16 pitches to score four runs before right-handed pitcher Kyle Hendricks logged his first out six batters into the game. The first two Reds batters hit sharp grounders to the backhand of shortstop Addison Russell, normally Chicago’s second baseman, and were rewarded with infield hits. Joey Votto loaded the bases with a single and Todd Frazier and Eugenio Suarez hit back-to-back two-run doubles. Hendricks, who had allowed just one earned run in 26 innings over his previous four games, set his career high with nine strikeouts. Votto homered in the fifth and singled off newest Cub Yoervis Medina with two outs to start a four-run rally in the seventh.
What it means: Forget David Price. If the Cubs are going after any pitcher as the July 31 non-waiver trade deadline nears, it should be Mike Leake, if just to keep from facing him. The Cincinnati right-hander, who was 4-0 with a 3.36 earned-run average over his last 10 starts against Chicago, throttled the Cubs on Wednesday, limiting them to four hits with no walks and six strikeouts in eight innings.
Key moment: With Chris Coghlan on third base and Kyle Schwarber on first after his obligatory RBI single, and with one out in the third inning, Anthony Rizzo grounded into a 6-3 double play to end the threat. Leake retired the next 15 Cubs batters before being relieved by Burke Badenhop.
What’s next: The Cubs swept their first doubleheader of the season on July 7 against St. Louis, but the best they can hope for in their second is a split as they play the makeup of the game postponed by rain on April 25. RHP Dallas Beeler, who was recalled as the 26th man Major League Baseball allows to be added to the roster for doubleheaders, starts for Chicago against LHP Tony Cingrani.