David Bote and Zach McKinstry each hit three-run homers, and the visiting Chicago Cubs scored six times in the sixth en route to a season-ending 15-2 victory over the Cincinnati Reds on Wednesday.
Franmil Reyes (three RBIs) clubbed a two-run homer in the eighth for one of his three hits and Bote finished with two hits and five RBIs for the Cubs (74-88), who won 12 of their final 15 games. McKinstry also had two hits and P.J. Higgins recorded three RBIs, while Adbert Alzolay (2-1) threw 2 1/3 scoreless innings of relief to earn the win for Chicago.
Meanwhile, Jake Fraley had two hits for the Reds (62-100), who, despite taking two of three from the Cubs in this series, suffered 100 losses for the second time in franchise history. Cincinnati’s 1982 club went 61-101.
In the second inning, Cincinnati starter Graham Ashcraft (5-6) issued back-to-back walks to Nico Hoerner and Higgins, then Bote drove the ball just over the fence in the right field corner for a 3-0 lead.
Cincinnati got a run back in the bottom of the second, when Jose Barrero drew a walk and eventually made his way around to score on Higgins’ passed ball. The Reds made it 3-2 an inning later when Stuart Fairchild lined a drive off center fielder Christopher Morel’s glove, resulting in a triple, and scored on rookie Spencer Steer’s two-out single off Chicago starter Adrian Sampson.
The Cubs’ right-hander didn’t make it out of the third, leaving with an apparent leg injury. Only one of the two runs Sampson allowed over those 2 2/3 innings was earned, to go with four hits and a walk.
Chicago, however, broke the game open in the sixth, highlighted by Bote’s two-run double and McKinstry’s blast, with two on, well up into the right field seats off Reds reliever Derek Law. Ashcraft’s day ended after 5 1/3 innings. He allowed seven runs, four hits and five walks while striking out four.
The Cubs added four more runs in the seventh, thanks in large part to Higgins’ two-run double.
–Field Level Media