CINCINNATI -- Ian Happ showed up in a big way, as the University of Cincinnati product hit a pair of home runs and added an RBI single to back Jacob Arrieta and lead the Cubs in a 6-2 victory.Happ smacked a two-run homer in the second and added a solo
CINCINNATI -- Ian Happ showed up in a big way, as the University of Cincinnati product hit a pair of home runs and added an RBI single to back Jacob Arrieta and lead the Cubs in a 6-2 victory.
Happ smacked a two-run homer in the second and added a solo shot in the fourth, both off Tim Adleman, for his second career multi-homer game. The rookie finished with four RBIs, tying his career high, which he's now accomplished three times.
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"He came home, his home away from home via Pittsburgh," Cubs manager Joe Maddon said of Happ. "Both balls were really well struck."
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Arrieta benefitted from an Anthony Rizzo solo home run with two outs in the seventh, his 19th. The right-hander has had success in Cincinnati, throwing his second no-hitter at Great American Ball Park in April 2016. On Sunday, he gave up a single to Joey Votto with two outs in the first, and that was it over seven innings. The right-hander struck out six and walked two. Votto's two-run single in the eighth off Koji Uehara accounted for the Reds' only runs.
Adleman, who served up three homers in his last start against the Brewers, and gave up eight over 28 innings in five June starts, exited after five innings.
"I felt pretty good about pitch execution, a lot better than I have been the last few starts," Adleman said. "It was just those two to Happ, really, and maybe one to [Javier] Baez where he hit the double. But when a guy is really tough on your lineup, especially a good lineup like ours, it makes it tough. It makes those mistakes that you make even a bigger deal than they are."
"I mean that was seven innings of one-hit ball, didn't get in trouble with a lot of bad counts or walks, didn't give us much," Reds manager Bryan Price said. "We only squared a couple, maybe two balls that we actually put on the barrel. So it's a testament to how good he was today. And we got something going a little bit against the bullpen, but too little, too late, they've extended the lead to 6-0. So we fell short."
Maddon said Arrieta's at-bats against Votto were key.
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"Jake was outstanding," Maddon said. "That was as good as we've seen Jake in a bit. You just go off Votto's at-bats. He did not have good at-bats today. That was my litmus test with him."
"You put together a list of your best five hitters in baseball and he's at the top," Arrieta said of Votto. "He puts together a good at-bat regardless of the scenario. He makes it tough on you. You've got to mix it up. You can't be predictable because a guy like that will do some damage."
The Reds were looking for their first three-game sweep of the Cubs in Cincinnati since September 1996. With the win, the Cubs ended a 20-game stretch in which they played 17 games on the road.
"Before we left [on the trip] with an inexperienced group, to say we're going to [go .500] -- two thumbs up," Maddon said. "Our hitting has been fluctuating, starting pitching has been fluctuating. That's why we're .500. I'll take it, I'm proud of our guys and the way they've fought."
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
It's Happening: With one out in the second, Willson Contreras walked and Happ followed with his 11th home run, which went 412 feet and bounced off the grassy berm in center field at Great American Ball Park. Happ made it 3-0 with a solo shot with two outs in the fourth, launching a 2-2 pitch from Adleman 409 feet to right. The rookie led the team in June with eight homers, and is now tied with Kyle Schwarber for third on the Cubs with 12. Happ's other multi-homer game was June 4 against the Cardinals.
"We have to continually look at how to get him in there," Maddon said of Happ. "He gives our lineup a different look, no question."
Double review: There were two challenges on one play in the Chicago eighth. Contreras reached safely on an error to open the inning, and Happ was called out at first on a grounder to third base. The Cubs challenged that call. Contreras ran to third on Happ's grounder, and was called safe, and the Reds challenged that ruling. After a review, both Cubs runners were called out. The call regarding Happ was confirmed, the call at third was overturned as the review showed that Contreras failed to keep his hand on the bag.
"It's big for us if we even want to talk about baseball as far as, I hate to even say, other than if we really want to enjoy the baseball in August and September. And the guys will, but you're going to enjoy it a lot more when there's a lot more on the line, the games are important, not for just the other teams you're playing, but for your own club." -- Price, on his team taking four of six games during the homestand
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Happ is the fourth Cubs player in the last 100 years with two multi-homer games in their first 45 career games, joining Kyle Schwarber, Jorge Soler and Mandy Brooks.
Votto's two-run single in the Reds' eighth was his 1,499th career hit, tying him with Ted Kluszewski for 10th all time in franchise history.
With one out in the Cubs' fifth, Kristopher Bryant singled, and tried to steal second as Anthony Rizzo struck out. Bryant was called safe but the Reds challenged the ruling, saying shortstop Zack Cozart had made the tag when Bryant popped up. After a review the call was overturned. Credit the Reds with a double play.
With one out and a runner at first in the Reds' fifth, home-plate umpire John Tumpane said Devin Mesoraco was hit by a pitch. The Cubs challenged the call, saying the ball hit the end of the bat and not the catcher. After a review, the call was overturned. Mesoraco then hit into a fielder's choice.
Cubs: After an off-day Monday, John Lackey will start Tuesday in an Interleague series against the Rays. Lackey is coming off a loss to the Nationals in which he gave up eight earned runs over 5 1/3 innings. He's had success against the Rays, posting a 13-8 record in 24 starts. He hasn't faced Tampa Bay since 2014. First pitch is scheduled for 1:20 p.m. CT.
Reds: Rookie Luis Castillo will get the start against the Rockies in Monday's 8:10 p.m. ET game as the Reds kick off a seven-game road trip before the All-Star break. Castillo didn't earn a decision in each of his first two starts, but has pitched well while posting a 3.38 ERA over 10 2/3 innings.
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Carrie Muskat has covered the Cubs since 1987, and for MLB.com since 2001. She writes a blog, Muskat Ramblings. You can follow her on Twitter @CarrieMuskat and listen to her podcast.
Jeremy Vernon is a reporter for MLB.com based in Cincinnati, and covered the Reds Sunday.