Cubs pull together, win sixth straight

Bote exits with separated left shoulder, but club continues winning ways with rout of Reds

May 29th, 2021

The Cubs can hardly afford another injury, but they were bit by the injury bug again in Saturday afternoon's 10-2 win over the Reds at Wrigley Field.

injured his left shoulder while sliding into second base in the fourth inning. He grabbed the shoulder and yelled in pain after sliding past the bag. Bote stayed on the ground for a few minutes while being checked on by the training staff, and he was eventually removed from the game and replaced by Patrick Wisdom at third base in the fifth.

• Box score

Cubs manager David Ross confirmed that Bote separated his shoulder, though he’ll go through further testing over the coming days.

“It looked like he was definitely in some pain,” said Cubs second baseman , who hit the grounder to first that resulted in Bote’s slide. “It's unfortunate to see that. David's such a great player and such a great person and works so hard each and every day, and we're hoping for the best.”

But despite Bote joining an already long list of injured Cubs players, the team keeps on winning.

Chicago pulled out its sixth win in a row, doing so with a lineup that had just four everyday players (Joc Pederson, Javier Báez, Willson Contreras and Ian Happ) in their normal positions to start the game.

The win followed a month-long trend for the Cubs, who have won 18 of 25 games in May even while having as many as 10 players on the injured list.

“There might be other teams out there who don't do that, and certainly might be down in the dumps when they're losing their guys and focus on that -- one bad thing after another,” Sogard said. “But even with those guys hurt, they're still around, they're still supporting each other. It's a close group of guys, and it's gonna help us get through this long season and help us continue to win games.”

The Cubs are doing it with a lineup that consists of players who were considered bats off the bench or who weren’t even on the team’s radar to start the year:

• Sogard has started the past four games at second following Nico Hoerner’s hamstring injury. His bases-loaded walk on Saturday brought in the go-ahead run.

• Wisdom came into the game as Bote’s replacement. He walked and scored in the sixth inning.

was called up from Triple-A in Hoerner’s place Wednesday. He hit his first home run in a Cubs uniform in the seventh.

“I've never dealt with anything like this,” Ross said. “You do feel bad for the players. It's one of those things, I guess it's part of the season, but I'm thankful for the guys that are coming up, playing hard and having success. … That's the sign of a good organization when you can get guys, pull them from the Minors, and they come up, fit right in, have good at-bats. It's a testament to their professionalism and their hard work.”

“We're all ready. We're ready for the callup, if it comes up, if it happens,” Ortega said through team translator Will Nadal. “We've seen the injuries that have happened. Everyone is ready, everyone talks, but we're just here ready for the opportunity when we're called.”

It was the kind of game where Chicago needed its less heralded players to help make something happen. Time will tell if Bote ends up on the IL and if any players will be activated in the near future. Until then, the Cubs have faith that their unsung heroes will continue to help produce wins.

“I think we noticed that in Spring Training, with really how deep the squad was and how well everyone is able to perform,” Sogard said. “Unfortunately, we have had some injuries, but you know, we have guys stepping up, guys ready, who come in and fill the job. That's why we're continuing to win.”