Friday, April 8, 2016

Rizzo knocks in 6, but Cubs lose Schwarber

Anthony Rizzo had three hits Thursday and tied his career-high with six RBIs to lift the Cubs to a 14-6 victory over the D-backs at Chase Field.
Rizzo had a single, triple, home run and also walked -- one of 10 free passes the Cubs took in the game.
The D-backs jumped on Cubs starter John Lackey (1-0) for three runs in the first, but the Cubs came right back with a pair of their own in the second off D-backs pitcher Rubby De La Rosa. The teams traded a pair of two-run innings in the third, but while Lackey was able to settle in, the Cubs delivered a knockout blow with a five-run fourth inning highlighted by Rizzo's two-run triple.
It was not all good news for the Cubs as they watched left fielder Kyle Schwarber sprain his left ankle in an outfield collision in the second inning.
"We had great at-bats," Cubs manager Joe Maddon said. "You look at the numbers and the hits, but it's because the at-bats are being worked so well. We're not chasing out of the zone, we're making pitchers come over the plate up and down the lineup. That's the beauty of the whole group right now."
Rizzo matched a career-high with six RBIs, hitting a three-run homer in the ninth, whileDexter Fowler and Addison Russell each added two RBIs.
"You get the lead against a good team, exciting game and continually give it up, it's tough," D-backs manager Chip Hale said of his team's two wasted leads in the game.
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Schwarber sprains ankle: Schwarber had to be carted off the field after he collided with Fowler chasing Jean Segura's ball in the left center field gap in the second inning. Schwarber was being evaluated for a left ankle sprain. Initial X-rays were negative, and the Cubs will know about the severity of his injuries after he undergoes an MRI on his left knee Friday. More >
Segura stays hot: A hot spring has carried over into the regular season for Segura. After hitting .469 this spring, Segura had eight hits in his first 16 at-bats this year including a pair of homers in his first two at-bats Thursday. Segura's first homer went over the wall in right, while his second was an inside-the-park one on a drive to the gap in left-center.
"I hit two homers, but we lost," Segura said. "It's not a good feeling for me."
New guy: Lackey's Cubs career didn't start well as Segura launched the first pitch from the right-hander, a 92 mph fastball, over the right field fence for a leadoff home run. Lackey, who had given up six runs in three previous starts against the D-backs, was charged with six runs and scattered eight hits over six innings and struck out four.
"I felt great physically," Lackey said. "Moving forward, I like my chances if I feel that good physically. [The D-backs] were swinging quite a bit. The story's about the [Cubs] offense. These guys are swinging. Fourteen runs, play a tight defense, and I'll take care of the rest."More >
Rough start: De La Rosa gave up seven runs (six earned) in 3 1/3 innings in continuing what has been a tough start to the year for the team's starters. Arizona starters have allowed 23 earned runs in 20 ⅓ innings so far this season with only Patrick Corbin able to last seven innings.
"The command wasn't there," Hale said. "It's the same story we've had with our starters."More >
Heads up: Rizzo showed his speed and some smart baserunning. In the third, Kris Bryantpopped up to catcher Welington Castillo, who made the catch while falling backward. Rizzo was on first and broke for second, and was safe on Castillo's throwing error. In the fourth, Rizzo sped around the bases when he tripled to right, driving in two. Bryant then smacked the ball to third baseman Jake Lamb, who threw wildly to first. Rizzo broke for home and scored. In the ninth, all Rizzo had to do was make good contact on a slider and he had his second homer of the season.
QUOTABLE
"It's fun to watch. They grind out at-bats, and when they get in their counts, they do damage." -- Lackey on the Cubs lineup, which has scored 29 runs in the first three games.
REPLAY REVIEW
In the Chicago fourth, Bryant was called out at second base trying to advance on an errant throw by Lamb. The Cubs challenged the call, and after review, it was overturned and Bryant was safe.
Cubs: Jason Hammel makes his season debut on Friday. The right-hander revamped his offseason program in hopes of being stronger in the second half as well as more effective. The key is fastball command for him. The game will be broadcast on WGN TV and 670 AM, starting at 8:40 p.m. CT.
D-backs: Robbie Ray gets his first start of the year Friday night as the D-backs play host to the Cubs again. Ray won the No. 5 spot in the rotation after beating out Archie Bradley, Zack Godley and Tyler Wagner this spring.

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