The Chicago Cubs’ bullpen was unable to hold a late-inning lead, and the Tampa Bay Rays scored in the tenth on a Kevin Kiermaier RBI single off Hector Rondon to take the opening game of the weekend series.
The Cubs (56-59) looked poised to have a big first inning against Rays starter Chris Archer, but after three consecutive hits, the last an RBI single by Starlin Castro, they failed to capitalize any further.
The Rays (49-65) were able to get to Cubs starter Tsuyoshi Wada ( in the top of the third on a solo home run by Desmond Jennings.
After a Arismendy Alcantara walk in the fourth, Ryan Sweeney reached on a force attempt on a throwing error by Archer. John Baker then singled in Alcantara to give the Cubs their second lead of the game.
The Rays were able to tie the game in the seventh on a challenge by the Cubs that was upheld.
In the eighth, Matt Joyce was able to put the Rays up 3-2 with an RBI single to center off Pedro Strop.
The Cubs battled back in the ninth, as pinch-hitter Justin Ruggiano singled to start the inning. Alcantara moved him over on a sacrifice bunt, and Ryan Sweeney followed with a seeing-eye single that plated Ruggiano to tie the game 3-3 off Rays closer Brad Boxberger (3-1, 2.11).
Hector Rondon (3-4, 3.53)came in to pitch the tenth in a non-save situation, but again struggled in that spot. This time, it wasn’t a case of bad luck as the Rays rattled off three solid hits, including Kermaier’s RBI single.
The Cubs will face the Rays in game two tomorrow at 3:05 pm CT. Edwin Jackson (6-11, 5.66) will face off against Jake Odorizzi (7-9, 4.09).
Tags: Chicago Cubs