Kris Bryant launched his 13th home run of the year to stake the Cubs to an early 2-0 lead. The Giants jumped all over Jake Arrieta and took a second straight ballgame from the Cubs in San Francisco.
After Willson Contreras singled to start the ballgame, Bryant immediately put the Cubs on top with his bomb to left, and the omens seemed good. When Arrieta got a double play ball in the bottom half of the inning, it seemed to be even more auspicious for the Cubs.
Alas, Arrieta struggled in the bottom of the 2nd, giving up six hits and six runs, including home runs to Steven Duggar and Alex Dickerson to put the Giants up 6-2 after two innings. Even more worrisome was the fact that Arrieta seemed to have little command of his pitches.
Despite Arrieta being pulled after just two innings, the Cubs continued fighting as Joc Pederson smacked an opposite-field bomb in the 4th that made it a 6-4. But Keegan Thompson promptly gave those right back in the bottom half of the inning as Jason Vosler and LaMonte Wade went deep for San Francisco.
The Cubs added one more on a Javier Báez groundout that scored Contreras again, but that was it for the Cubs as they did nothing after that point against the Giants’ bullpen. (Box Score)
Why the Cubs Lost
Arrieta was not good in this one, as he alternated between giving up hard contact and not being able to find the plate. Digging out from a 6-2 hole while having your pen cover six innings on the road is a tough ask.
It’s really difficult to win when the other team hits a three run home run. The Giants did just that when Dickerson launched his bomb in the midst of a six run 2nd inning off Arrieta.
Stats That Matter
- Arrieta gave up 8 earned runs in his first five starts of the season, 23 in his last six starts.
- With another home run and a walk, Bryant’s slash line for the year is now .316/.397/.607.
- Despite two solo home runs allowed by Keegan Thompson, the Cubs bullpen continued its fine work, logging six innings with eight strikeouts and no runs other than the bombs in the 3rd inning.
The Cubs came into the City by the Bay on a hot streak but have lost the first two to the NL West-leading Giants. They need to get off the schneid, but it won’t be an easy task with undefeated Kevin Gausman starting on Saturday.
The Cubs continue their four game set at Oracle Park against the Giants with a late afternoon game in San Francisco on Saturday. Kohl Stewart gets a second start for the Cubs as he takes on NL Pitcher of the Month, Gausman, for the host Giants. The game will be a 6:15 start and will be carried by FOX, although you can always listen to Pat and Ron on 670 The Score if you so desire. Cord-cutters can check out a free preview of fuboTV if you want to see whether the streaming service with Marquee is worthwhile.