Jorge Soler, Luis Valbuena homer in Cubs loss to Reds


Despite a three-run eighth inning, the Chicago Cubs failed to rally against the Cincinnati Reds on Wednesday night, as the team saw its four-game winning streak come to a close in a 7-5 loss at the Great American Ballpark.

In the top of the second against Cincinnati right-hander Mat Latos (5-3, 3.15 ERA), third baseman Luis Valbuena and right fielder Jorge Soler, who was making his big league debut, clubbed back-to-back home runs to put the Cubs up 2-0 early on.

Cincinnati (64-69) answered back with two runs in the bottom of the inning, thanks to an RBI double Skip Schumaker and an RBI groundout Zack Cozart against Chicago right-hander Jacob Turner (4-8, 5.84 ERA), who allowed seven hits and six runs – three earned – in just 3 2/3 innings of work. Carlos Villanueva was then tapped by Ricky Renteria, tossing 2 1/3 scoreless frames of relief work.

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Schumaker added an RBI single in the bottom of the fourth and another single by speedster Billy Hamilton, followed by a Starlin Castro error, made it a 4-2 ballgame. Perennial All-Star Brandon Phillips and catcher Devin Mesocraco added singles, making it a 6-2 Cincinnati lead after four.

Javier Baez broke out of his recent cold spell to some degree with a two-run single in the top of the eighth and Soler added an RBI single to plate Baez, pulling Chicago (59-73) within one, 6-5. However, a solo blast off the bat of Chris Heisey added some cushion and Cincinnati was able to fend off the Cubs late.

Soler and leadoff man Chris Coghlan each had two hits apiece in the loss. Soler led the club with 2 RBIs and Baez struck out just once in five at-bats.