Reds Nine-Run 9th Crushes Cubs at HoHoKam Park
Donald Lutz slugged a three-run home run to cap a nine-run 9th, as the Cincinnati Reds drubbed the Cubs 11-1 in Cactus League action this evening at Dwight Patterson Field at HoHoKam Park in Mesa, AZ.
Jeff Samardzija got the start for the Cubs and threw five strong innings (72 pitches - 53 strikes), allowing just one run on five hits (two doubles and three singles) and no walks, with four strikeouts and 6/5 GO/FO. The Reds scored their only run off The Shark in the top of the 3rd, when pitcher Johnny Cueto singled with two outs, advanced to 2nd base on a WP, and scored on an Emmanuel Burriss RBI double.
But Reds SP Johnny Cueto was even better, shutting out the Cubs on four hits and a walk over six innings.
The Reds took a 2-0 lead in the top of the 7th, when Todd Frazier took Cubs LHP Hisanoiri Takahashi deep for a solo HR. Takahashi had struck out the side in a 1-2-3 6th before allowing the Frazier dinger (Takahashi's team leading 4th HR allowed in just 15.1 IP) in his 2nd inning of work.
Shawn Camp (pitching in a game for the second day in a row) got the final out in the 7th, and then James Russell worked a scoreless 8th.
The Reds nine-run 9th was mostly a result of Carlos Marmol's ineffectiveness, as the Cub closer surrendered six runs (three earned) on four hits and a walk without retiring a batter. It's unusual for a Spring Training crowd to boo a player from the home team, but the fans at HoHoKam Park really let Marmol have it as he left the mound. (It's Spring Training for Cubs fans, too).
The Cubs scored their only run of the evening in the bottom of the 7th off Reds RHRP Alfredo Simon. Welington Castillo led-off the frame and fisted a bloop single to RF, advanced to 2nd on a ground out, and scored on a Steve Clevenger two-out PH opposite-field double into the LF corner.
Down 2-1, the Cubs got the tying and potential go-ahead runs on base with one out against Simon in the 8th (Dan Vogelbach walked and Dave Sappelt drilled a single), but Nate Schierholtz struck out (swinging) and Jeimer Candelario (up from Minor League Camp) grounded out to end the trhreat. (Candelario also made a costly error in the top of the 9th).