CHICAGO (AP) — Shin-Soo Choo hit a tiebreaking two-run single in the 11th inning and J.J. Hoover provided terrific relief work on his 26th birthday, helping the Cincinnati Reds beat the Chicago Cubs 6-4 on Tuesday night.
With no outs and the bases loaded, Choo jumped on the first pitch he got from Eduardo Sanchez (0-1) and lined it into the gap in right-center. Ryan Ludwick and Devin Mesoraco came around to score.
Sanchez walked the first two batters of the inning and Cesar Izturis reached on an error by third baseman Donnie Murphy to set up Choo’s clutch swing.
Nate Schierholtz, Dioner Navarro and Murphy homered for Chicago, which was shut out in each of its previous three home games. Schierholtz’s two-run drive in the second snapped a franchise record home scoreless stretch at 33 innings.
Hoover (3-5) allowed one hit in 2 1-3 innings, running his scoreless streak to 21 games and 24 2-3 innings. Aroldis Chapman finished for his 29th save in 33 chances, closing out Cincinnati’s sixth win in seven games.
David DeJesus had a leadoff single in the 10th for the Cubs, but Junior Lake popped up a sacrifice attempt and Hoover turned Anthony Rizzo’s comebacker into an inning-ending double play.
The Reds scored two in the first and two more in the third, with Brandon Phillips at the center of each rally. He lined an RBI single to center on the 10th pitch of his at-bat in the first. He added another single against Jeff Samardzija in the third and then swiped second on the back half of a double steal with Joey Votto.
Votto scored on a wild pitch and Xavier Paul followed with a slow bouncer up the middle that the Cubs were unable to turn into a double play, allowing Phillips to come home for a 4-2 lead.
The Cubs responded with solo shots by Navarro and Murphy. Navarro led off the fourth with a drive just past the foul pole in right for his career-high 10th homer, and Murphy tied it with another leadoff shot in the seventh.
The three homers allowed matched a career high for Bailey, who gave up six hits and walked three in 6 1-3 innings. He had won each of his previous two starts.
Samardzija yielded six hits and walked four in six innings, extending his winless stretch to five games. The right-hander was coming off a disastrous outing at Philadelphia, when he gave up nine runs and 11 hits in just 3 1-3 innings in a 12-1 loss.
The unseasonably cool night at Wrigley Field began with the Cubs holding a pregame ceremony to honor Hall of Famer Ernie Banks, who will receive the Presidential Medal of Freedom in a November ceremony at the White House. It’s America’s highest civilian honor for contributions to society.
Fellow Hall of Famer Billy Williams paid tribute to his longtime friend with team chairman Tom Ricketts standing nearby, and the 82-year-old Banks waved to the crowd as it saluted “Mr. Cub” with a long ovation.
“It’s amazing,” Banks said. “It means everything to me. Life if is just wonderful. When you do things to help people and share things then it comes back to you. I just worked hard and to try to do my best, loved the players, love Wrigley Field, love all the players.”
Banks joins an impressive list of baseball players to receive the honor, including Joe DiMaggio, Jackie Robinson, Ted Williams, Hank Aaron, Roberto Clemente, Frank Robinson, Buck O’Neil and Stan Musial.
NOTES: It was Ludwick’s second appearance since he tore cartilage in his right shoulder while sliding headfirst into third base on opening day. … It looks as if Jorge Soler, one of Chicago’s top prospects, could be done for the season. The Cuban outfielder is sidelined with a stress fracture in his left leg. “Fall league’s still very much a possibility,” president of baseball operations Theo Epstein said. “Minor league season is looking like it might not happen at this point.” The 21-year-old Soler signed a nine-year, $30 million contract with the Cubs last year. … RHP Jake Arrieta, who was acquired in a July trade with Baltimore, could be back up with the Cubs soon. “Yeah, we’re getting close to that point,” Epstein said. Arrieta is 2-2 with a 3.56 ERA in seven starts with Triple-A Iowa. … Cubs LHP Chris Rusin (2-1, 3.08 ERA) and Reds RHP Bronson Arroyo (10-9, 3.51 ERA) are scheduled to pitch on Wednesday.
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