Cubs swept by Brewers after struggling at the plate


by - Associate Editor -
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Kyle Hendricks's quality start was wasted due to a lackluster offensive performance from the Cubs' batters.
Kyle Hendricks's quality start was wasted due to a lackluster offensive performance from the Cubs' batters.

CHICAGO – Five Chicago base runners were left stranded in scoring position as part of the Cubs' defeat at the hands of the Milwaukee Brewers on Sunday. Offering starting pitcher Kyle Hendricks little run support, the Cubs lost 3-1 to the Brew Crew to suffer their first sweep since May.

Losing their third straight game at Wrigley Field, the Cubs wasted an early lead, as well as a solid four-hit, seven-strikeout showing from Hendricks. Chicago catcher Rene Rivera, who has proven to be surprisingly valuable during Willson Contreras's absence, was the lone Cub to experience substantial success at the dish on the day, as the veteran backstop went 2-3 and collected his 30th RBI of the season on a double to deep right in the second inning. Scoring Ian Happ, the double put the Cubs up 1-0 but would serve as the one and only example of offensive excitement for the North Siders in the contest.

Brewers left fielder Ryan Braun incited Milwaukee with a gutsy bunt single in the top of the fourth. Not usually one to practice small ball, Braun was in rare form today, as he also stole second base in the fourth inning. Later scoring on an RBI grounder from catcher Stephen Vogt, Braun practically single-handedly knotted the game up at one.

A pair of two-out grounders cost the Cubs in the fourth and fifth frames, which made the two-run homer hit by Milwaukee third baseman Travis Shaw in the sixth inning rather detrimental. Hendricks's lone blunder, the blast by Shaw provided the Brewers with a 3-1 lead that they did not relinquish.

Hendricks took the loss to become 6-5 overall, and Brewers starter Zach Davies, who gave up just one run in seven innings pitched, received the win to move to 17-8 overall. As a result of being swept in a three-game series at home, the Cubs (77-66) saw their lead over the Brewers (75-68) in the National League Central decrease to two games. Chicago will assuredly look to use its upcoming three-game affair with the lowly New York Mets (63-80) at the Friendly Confines to regain some breathing room.

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