Chicago Cubs Score and Recap (Simulated Game 66): Reds 8, Cubs 5 – Reds Out-Slug Cubs in Cincy

After years of bad baseball in Cincinnati, it still feels a little weird to see the Chicago Cubs (43-23) battling the Cincinnati Reds (42-23) for first in the NL Central. The matchup has provided for some terrific games, though, and Saturday it was the Reds who came out on top thanks to a power barrage at the Great American Small Park,via MLB The Show 20.

It was a tough day for Cubs starter Yu Darvish, who allowed three homers in all. Eugenio Suárez got the party started with a two-run jack to left in the bottom of the 1st, but a Kris Bryant error meant both runs were unearned.

Chicago got to Reds starter Tyler Mahle in the 4th inning with a four-run frame, capped by an Ian Happ two-run homer to center field to tie the score. A hit batter and single put runners on the corners for Darvish, who singled to put the Cubs ahead. Bryant followed with another hit to increase the advantage to 4-2.

The Reds immediately rallied back in the bottom of the inning when catcher Tucker Barnhart ripped his own two-run shot to knot the game. Javy Báez ended Mahle’s day with a go-ahead solo blast in the 5th, which was unfortunately the end of the Cubs offense on Saturday.

Cincinnati went ahead for good in the bottom of the 5th when Suárez launched his second two-run homer of the day against Darvish to make the score 6-5. Mike Moustakas padded the lead, taking Jeremy Jeffress deep with the Reds’ fourth homer in the 7th. Joey Votto‘s run-scoring single in the 8th provided the final margin in the home team’s win.

Notes: The Cubs got some good news Saturday, announcing Jon Lester will return from back spasms and start Sunday. Ryan Tepera will be sent to AAA Iowa to make room.

Key Players:

Baez – 2-for-5, HR, RBI
Happ – 2-for-4, HR, 2 RBI
Schwarber – 1-for-3, 2 BB
Suarez – 3-for-5, 2 HR, 4 RBI
Votto – 1-for-4, RBI
Moustakas – 1-for-2, 2 BB, HR, RBI

Winning Pitcher – De Leon (4-4)
Losing Pitcher – Darvish (6-4)
Save – Iglesias (16)
Home Runs – Baez (17), Happ (15), Suarez (22), Moustakas (19), Barnhart (7)

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