May 25, 2013; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Chicago Cubs manager Dale Sveum (4) makes a pitching change during the sixth inning against the Cincinnati Reds at Great American Ball Park. The Reds defeated the Cubs 5-2. Mandatory Credit: Frank Victores-USA TODAY Sports

Cubs' Struggles Continue

Six.  That’s the number of losses the Cubs have had in a row.

They continued to slide in Cincinnati on Saturday afternoon as they dropped game two of the series 5-2.  The Cubs struck first in the third inning when Anthony Rizzo doubled to center field plating David DeJesus.  Alfonso Soriano followed that with a single of his own plating Rizzo.

That was all she wrote as far as runs on the scoreboard for the Cubs.  The Reds broke through in the fourth when Todd Frazier hit a sacrifice fly that scored Brandon Phillips.  The big inning came in the sixth for the Reds.  They managed to score four runs in the inning and never looked back from there.

Rizzo finally broke out of his 0 for 18 slump that had spanned over the last five games.  He went three for three with two doubles.  His three hits were also half of the teams total hits.  Nate Schierholtz had two of the other three and Alfonso Soriano had the other.  Those three were the three, four, and five batters for the Cubs.  Production from top to bottom is necessary for the Cubs to be successful.  Now, I know you’re thinking that that’s obvious, but its also the truth.

Travis Wood struggled a little bit facing the high powered Reds offense.  Wood went five and two thirds innings and gave up five earned runs.  This is the third game in a row that the Cub starting pitcher has struggled.  It started with Edwin Jackson, then it was Scott Feldman, and now Wood today.  However, the Cub bullpen was solid for a change.  Rafael Dolis and Kevin Gregg combined to throw two and a third innings and gave up no hits.

The Reds got a quality start from Homer Bailey.  Bailey went six innings, gave up five hits, and allowed two earned runs.  Then he turned it over to the bullpen which shut the door on the Cubs.  The threesome of Sam LeCure, Johnathan Broxton, and Aroldis Chapman combined to give up one hit in their three innings of work.  Chapman earned his twelfth save of the year and his second in as many games.

Ryan Hanigan might be starting to come around for the Reds.  He had two hits and drove  in a run on the afternoon.

The Cubs and the Reds will wrap up the series tomorrow afternoon as Johnny Cueto (2-0) will take on Matt Garza (0-0).  This will be Garza’s second start since returning to the starting pitching rotation.  Hopefully Garza can give the Cubs the same type of start he did last time and the bullpen can come through so the Cubs can refrain from getting swept out of Cincy like they did in Pittsburgh.  Game time is set for 12:10 CT.

Tags: Alfonso Soriano Anthony Rizzo Aroldis Chapman Brandon Phillips Chicago Cubs Cincinnati Reds David Dejesus Edwin Jackson Homer Bailey Johnathan Broxton Johnny Cueto Kevin Gregg Matt Garza Nate Schierholtz Rafael Dolis Ryan Hanigan Sam LeCure Scott Feldman Travis Wood

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