MLB: TJ Friedl leads Reds past Cubs, win streak at 7

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TJ Friedl belted a tiebreaking two-run homer and drove in three runs while Andrew Abbott allowed just one run over five innings to lead the Cincinnati Reds to their seventh straight win Saturday, 4-3, over the visiting Chicago Cubs.

Dansby Swanson and David Bote each had three hits for the Cubs, who stranded four runners over the final two innings and lost for the 12th time in 16 games.

Lucas Sims could not convert a rare save chance for the resting Alexis Diaz, retiring just one batter in the ninth and leaving a first-and-third situation for lefty Justin Wilson.

Wilson, who earned his first save since Sept. 22, 2019, got some help to get out of the jam. Cincinnati catcher Tyler Stephenson made a sliding catch of an Ian Happ foul pop near the first-base on-deck circle for the second out. Mike Tauchman then grounded out sharply to first for the final out.

The Cubs took an early lead when Swanson doubled home Cody Bellinger in the first.

The Reds answered in their half of the inning when Jeimer Candelario connected for a solo homer against his former team. It is Candelario’s ninth long ball of the season and his third in six games.

The Reds broke the tie in the third when Chicago’s Ben Brown (1-3) walked Jonathan India to open the inning. After a Will Benson strikeout, Friedl connected on a line-drive homer to the seats in right for his third homer of the year to give Cincinnati a 3-1 lead.

Two of Friedl’s three homers have come against Brown, who surrendered a two-run shot last Sunday in Cincinnati’s 5-2 win.

Abbott (5-5) gave up five hits and labored to get through five innings, throwing 99 pitches but still earning the win. The lefty escaped a two-out jam in his final inning when Swanson doubled, and Happ walked. Tauchman flied out to Friedl in deep center for the final out.

Yan Gomes snapped an 0-for-25 drought with an RBI double off reliever Emilio Pagan in the sixth, scoring Bote from first.

Pagan was making his first relief appearance since May 19 against the Dodgers after spending 15 days on the injured list with right triceps tightness.

The Cubs made it a one-run game in the eighth but missed a chance to tie the score after putting runners on second and third with just one out. Pete Crow-Armstrong grounded out to second, scoring Bote from third and marking the first run scored against Cincinnati reliever Fernando Cruz in 11 appearances.

Brown gave up three runs and three hits in four innings.

–Field Level Media

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