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Cubs’ big third inning leads to split-squad win over Brewers

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9. Final. 5. 76. 10

Cubs post seven runs in the third and Edwin Jackson looked sharp in three solid innings for the Cubs

The Cubs got off to a fast start and never looked back in a nice split-squad win over division rival Milwaukee Brewers, 10-5.

Taking a one run lead into the top of the third inning, the Cubs sent 12 batters to the plate and scored seven runs on seven hits while forcing the Brewers to make two pitching changes.  The big hits in the inning were by Mike Olt and Welington Castillo.

Olt drove in Arismendy Alcantara and Starlin Castro with a hard single to center.  That was his only hit in four at-bats while he struck out twice.

Castillo drove in Ryan Sweeney and Olt with a double to deep left.  Castillo would finish the day going 3-4 with 3 RBI’s and a run scored.

Matt Szczur had another nice game for the Cubs hitting his third home run of the spring and scoring a pair.  

Edwin Jackson started the game and had his best showing yet – pitching three strong innings while only allowing one hit and striking out two and walking two – earning himself the win.

Pedro Strop relieved Jackson in the fourth and gave up a rare home run to Adam Lind then a double to former Cub Aramis Ramirez.  He would shake that off and then strikeout the next two to end his day.   

What Stood Out:

The third inning’s hit parade that brought in seven runs was very impressive.  Even more impressive was that it was done without hitting a single home run.  They moved runners around the bases with solid contact hitting and waiting for their pitch.  This performance is exactly what Cubs manager Joe Maddon loves to see.

Castillo continues his outstanding spring with the bat – now batting .412 this spring.  His value is going up every game with the Cubs.

Also with the hitting – the Cubs would strikeout seven times while walking five.

Edwin Jackson did a great job keeping him in the running for the fifth spot in the rotation.  More outings like this could win that job.

Strop and Hector Rondon both looked good in their respective single innings of work.  Both gave up runs but Rondon’s would be unearned due to a throwing error that he would commit on a bunt single he fielded – allowing a run to score.

What’s Next:

Travis Wood (0-0, 3.60) and the Cubs (4-8) will host Johnny Cueto (0-1, 1.80) and the Cincinnati Reds (5-6).  Wood will look to keep his name atop of the list of candidates for the fifth starter’s job for the Cubs against his former team who he pitched two years with. The game time is scheduled for 3:05 CT.

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