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Chicago at Cincinnati

Chi. Cubs (85-56)000000110261
Cincinnati (63-78) «23040010x10102

Reds rookies send Cubs to sixth consecutive loss

CBSSports.com wire reports

CINCINNATI -- The first-place Cubs have lost their way.

Jay Bruce hit his first career grand slam and Joey Votto added a two-run homer Friday night, an all-rookie power display that sent the Cincinnati Reds to a 10-2 victory on a day when nothing went right for Chicago.

Manager Lou Piniella got lost on his way to the ballpark. Starter Ted Lilly lasted a season-low two innings. And the Cubs' losing streak reached a season-high six games against a team already eliminated from the race.

"That's not what we expected," Piniella said.

It's how the week has gone.

Lilly (13-9) gave up five runs, including Votto's 18th homer, before his quick exit. The left-hander has started four times against the Reds this season and lost all four.

"For one reason or another, one way or another, they've found a way to beat me," Lilly said. "A couple of games, I've thrown the ball OK. That wasn't the case tonight. That was probably my most disappointing start of the year. I had much more motivation to win this one, given the circumstances of the last few days."

Bruce hit his 16th homer off Jon Lieber for a 9-0 lead in the fourth inning, silencing the thousands of blue-shirted Cubs fans in the stands. By that point, the Cubs knew they were finished, given the way their offense has struggled in the past week.

"I know at some point we're going to break out and score runs and play like we're capable of playing," Lilly said. "I think everybody else in this clubhouse knows that, regardless what's happened the last six games."

Bruce and Votto have the most homers by any rookie duo in the NL, providing a little long-range hope for a franchise that hasn't been to the playoffs since 1995.

"We're pushing each other," Bruce said. "Hopefully, we're giving the fans something to watch and getting on a roll for next year."

Right-hander Bronson Arroyo (14-10) won his fourth straight start, allowing one run in 6 1/3 innings. Afterward, he taped the Spanish phrase for his No. 61 on the back of his jersey, making fun of Bengals receiver Chad Johnson's name change to Ocho Cinco.

"My father's Cuban, so I'm half," Arroyo said. "I was at home watching that today. It was unbelievable. He was on every talk show."

The Cubs kicked off their longest road trip at the scene of one of their best moments. They clinched the NL Central title at Great American Ball Park last season, when they won 85 games and got knocked out of the playoffs in the first round. They've had the World Series -- something they haven't won in 100 years -- in the back of their minds all season long.

Until the past week, they've played like they could very well get there. They've already won 85 games -- most in the NL -- and have been in first place since May 11.

September has been disastrous. Ace Carlos Zambrano got an injection in his sore pitching shoulder on Thursday and will miss at least one start. Right-hander Rich Harden also will miss a start because of a bothersome arm.

The Cubs can't even get to the ballpark without losing their way.

Piniella and first base coach Matt Sinatro left Chicago at 8 a.m. for a five-hour drive to Cincinnati. With Sinatro driving and Piniella napping, they missed a turnoff and wound up in northeast Ohio -- the wrong end of the state.

They stopped at a gas station, bought a map and backtracked along two-lane roads, arriving at the ballpark only two hours before the first pitch. Travel time: eight hours.

The Cubs' chances of winning went by in a blink. After Bruce's homer made it 9-0, Piniella removed his cap and shook his head a few times in disbelief. By the sixth inning, he was freely substituting for his starters, already looking ahead to the next game.

"The truth of the matter is, you've got to get it done," Piniella said. "And it's been a struggle over the past half-a-dozen games or so to put runs on the board. And when you're pitching is not good, it gets ugly like it did tonight."


  • Harden threw Friday without problem. He'll skip his scheduled start Sunday, but likely will start Wednesday in St. Louis if there is no setback.
  • Zambrano hopes to play catch on Sunday and start a game next weekend in Houston.
  • Lilly has given up a career-high 31 homers.
  • The start of the game was delayed 17 minutes by rain, which fell intermittently during the early innings.
  • It was only the second time since the Reds traded Ken Griffey Jr. and Adam Dunn that they scored 10 runs in a game.
Copyright 2015 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
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There's really not much catcher Geovany Soto can tell Ted Lilly, who yields five runs in two innings.  (AP)
There's really not much catcher Geovany Soto can tell Ted Lilly, who yields five runs in two innings. (AP)

Players of the Game

J. Bruce
AB 3
R 2
H 2
HR 1

B. Arroyo
IP 6.1
H 4
ER 1
BB 2
K 6

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Chicago Cubs
Alfonso Soriano, LF3000231 .284
Ryan Theriot, SS4000112 .308
Derrek Lee, 1B3010010 .292
    Daryle Ward, 1B1000013 .226
Aramis Ramirez, 3B3000001 .274
    Ronny Cedeno, 3B1000000 .278
Mark DeRosa, 2B3000001 .289
    Mike Fontenot, 2B1110000 .298
Jim Edmonds, CF3120100 .236
Geovany Soto, C2000013 .293
    Koyie Hill, C20210001.000
Kosuke Fukudome, RF4000012 .262
Ted Lilly, P0000000 .170
   a- Micah Hoffpauir, PH1000000 .368
    Jon Lieber, P0000000 .000
   b- Casey McGehee, PH1000010 .000
    Angel Guzman, P0000000 .000
   c- Henry Blanco, PH1000001 .279
    Kevin Hart, P0000000 .000
    Bob Howry, P0000000 .000
   d- Reed Johnson, PH1000010 .303
a-flied out for Lilly in the 3rd
b-struck out for Lieber in the 5th
c-flied out for Guzman in the 7th
d-struck out for Howry in the 9th
2B - Koyie Hill (1, Arroyo)
RBI - Koyie Hill (1)
Team LOB - 9
DP - Theriot-DeRosa-Lee
E - Aramis Ramirez (17, Misplayed grounder)
Chicago Cubs
Ted Lilly (L,13-9) 2455311 4.43
Jon Lieber 2344111 4.05
Angel Guzman 2100010 0.00
Kevin Hart 1211020 7.97
Bob Howry 1000010 5.54
IBB - B. Phillips by Ted Lilly, Votto by Jon Lieber
HBP - Dickerson (by Ted Lilly), Cabrera (by Jon Lieber)
Pitches-Strikes - Ted Lilly 42-23, Jon Lieber 32-20, Angel Guzman 23-15, Kevin Hart 26-15, Bob Howry 9-6
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Ted Lilly 3-3, Jon Lieber 2-2, Angel Guzman 2-3, Bob Howry 1-1
Batters Faced - Ted Lilly 15, Jon Lieber 10, Angel Guzman 7, Kevin Hart 5, Bob Howry 3
Cincinnati Reds
Chris Dickerson, CF-LF4110011 .329
Jeff Keppinger, SS5221011 .265
Brandon Phillips, 2B4210101 .262
Joey Votto, 1B3223210 .297
Edwin Encarnacion, 3B3001004 .249
Jay Bruce, RF3224102 .260
Jolbert Cabrera, LF3000013 .286
    Jeremy Affeldt, P0000000 .000
Ryan Hanigan, C4121001 .300
Bronson Arroyo, P2000010 .189
    Gary Majewski, P0000000 .000
    Bill Bray, P0000000 .000
   a- Corey Patterson, PH-CF1000011 .201
a-struck out for Bray in the 7th
2B - Jeff Keppinger (20, Lilly), Brandon Phillips (24, Lieber), Joey Votto (25, Guzman), Jay Bruce (14, Hart)
HR - Joey Votto (18, Lilly), Jay Bruce (16, Lieber)
SF - Edwin Encarnacion (5)
SH - Bronson Arroyo (7)
RBI - Jeff Keppinger (36), Joey Votto 3 (70), Edwin Encarnacion (60), Jay Bruce 4 (46), Ryan Hanigan (8)
2-OUT RBI - Joey Votto 2 (28), Jay Bruce 4 (22)
Team LOB - 6
E - Jay Bruce 2 (9, Dropped fly)
Cincinnati Reds
Bronson Arroyo (W,14-10) 6.1411260 4.84
Gary Majewski 0.1000200 5.40
Bill Bray 0.1000010 2.86
Jeremy Affeldt 2210030 3.61
WP - Bronson Arroyo (6)
Pitches-Strikes - Bronson Arroyo 122-73, Gary Majewski 17-7, Bill Bray 4-3, Jeremy Affeldt 36-27
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Bronson Arroyo 4-10, Jeremy Affeldt 1-2
Batters Faced - Bronson Arroyo 26, Gary Majewski 3, Bill Bray 1, Jeremy Affeldt 8
Game Information
Attendance - 31213
Game Time - 2:52
Temperature - 70
Umpires - Home - Charlie Reliford, First Base - Brian Runge, Second Base - Scott Barry, Third Base - Greg Gibson