Cubs endure frustrating afternoon in loss to Brewers
|Wednesday, June 13, 2018 5:43 PM- -|
MILWAUKEE — For the second straight game, the Chicago Cubs were shut out by the Milwaukee Brewers. Falling 1-0 in a war of attrition at Miller Park, the Cubs (38-27) dropped the rubber match of the three-game set and fell behind the Brewers (41-27) by a game and a half in the National League Central.
Cubs starting pitcher Mike Montgomery received no hitting support for his solid start. Giving up just two hits and one walk in six innings pitched, Montgomery continued his recent uptick since being inserted into the rotation. Montgomery has accrued a 1.14 ERA in his four starts this season and has allowed one or fewer runs in nine of his 11 starts dating back to last July.
Montgomery's lone run given up came in the form of a solo home run off the bat of Brewers leadoff man Lorenzo Cain. The center fielder went 2-3 with a stolen base. Cain's eighth home run of the year, which came in the third frame, served as the sole run of the contest. The Brewers tallied a meager four hits and two walks overall.
The Cubs, on the other hand, compiled six hits and three walks but left 12 runners stranded on base. For what it is worth, the Brewers left 13 men stranded. The Brew Crew simply came up with the only big hit of the ballgame.
Brewers starting pitcher Jhoulys Chacin picked up the win to become 6-1. He struck out seven in six innings of work and was taken for four hits and three walks. The Cubs produced a couple of two-out rallies against Chacin in the early innings but failed to bring any runners home.
A frustrating afternoon for the Cubs boiled over in the eighth when the usually mild-mannered Anthony Rizzo snapped at the home-plate umpire following a questionable strike-three call. The umpire showed restraint by not ejecting Rizzo or Cubs manager Joe Maddon, who also argued the call.
Shutting out the Cubs in back-to-back games for the first time since 2006, the Brewers secured the series win and maintained their lead in the division. Interestingly, the only other time that the Brewers have beaten the Cubs by a final score of 1-0 came in a 2004 game that featured a solo home run by then-Milwaukee player and current Milwaukee manager Craig Counsell.
Brewers closer Corey Knebel collected three straight outs in the ninth, including consecutive strikeouts to end the game, and garnered his sixth save of the season. Montgomery received his first loss as a starter this year to become 2-2 overall.
With the exception of a five-run 11th inning in Monday's extra-innings win, the Cubs put together a fairly forgettable offensive showing in their three games against the Brewers. Chicago will look to right the ship in a three-game affair with the St. Louis Cardinals (36-29) at Busch Stadium this weekend.