CINCINNATI (AP) — Cubs star Kris Bryant exited after being hit in the left hand by a pitch, and lefty Anthony Rizzo wound up playing third base as Chicago beat the Cincinnati Reds, 13-9, Tuesday night for their seventh win in nine games.
The defending World Series champion Cubs moved a season-high 10 games over .500. This victory came with a late offensive surge, with the Cubs scoring nine runs in the last three innings.
Bryant was taken out as a precaution after being plunked in the ninth. X-rays after the game were negative, according to reports.
Minus the NL MVP and ahead 13-6, manager Joe Maddon shifted Rizzo across the diamond from first base to make his first career appearance at third — a rare spot for a left-hander. Rizzo didn’t get any plays at the new position.
The Cubs rallied in the seventh after loading the bases with two outs. Baez fell behind 0-2 against left-hander Wandy Peralta (3-4), worked the count full, fouled off a pitch and then singled to right for a pair of runs that tied it 6-6, his bat shattering on impact.
Zobrist was originally in the lineup, but had trouble getting a rental car in Nashville on his way to the ballpark after a day off and didn’t arrive until close to game time. His timing at the plate was better — he followed Baez’s single with a pinch-hit, two-run double.
Chicago sent nine batters to the plate for five more runs in the eighth against Blake Wood, with Zobrist driving in another run.
The surge preserved John Lackey’s streak of no losses since the All-Star break. He gave up six runs in five innings, including the first of Eugenio Suarez’s two homers and Scooter Gennett’s solo shot. The right-hander is 5-0 in his last seven starts.
Hector Rondon (4-1) escaped a bases-loaded threat in the sixth.
Reds starter Homer Bailey left after only three innings because he felt irritation in the back of his pitching shoulder. Bailey missed the first half of the season while recovering from elbow surgery.
Cubs: C Willson Contreras ran before the game and felt good, but manager Joe Maddon doesn’t want to push him too fast as he recovers from a strained right hamstring that landed him on the DL on Aug. 11. He said there’s no target date for his return.
Reds: RH Scott Feldman had surgery to clean out his right knee and will miss the rest of the season. He’s been on the DL twice in the second half of the season because of the knee.
Cubs: LH Mike Montgomery (3-6) moves back into the rotation, replacing the injured Jon Lester. It’ll be his ninth start of the season and his third consecutive appearance against Cincinnati. On Aug. 17, he threw 4 1/3 shutout relief innings.
Reds: RH Asher Wojciechowski (3-2) makes his eighth start and second career appearance against the Cubs. He’s 2-2 as a starter with a 7.39 ERA.
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