Chicago Cubs News

Chicago Cubs News: Rizzo, Hammel lead Cubs to series victory over Reds

Apr 24, 2016; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Chicago Cubs pitcher Jake Arrieta (49) stands on the field with first baseman Anthony Rizzo (middle) after the Cubs defeated the Cincinnati Reds 9-0 at Great American Ball Park. Mandatory Credit: David Kohl-USA TODAY Sports
Apr 24, 2016; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Chicago Cubs pitcher Jake Arrieta (49) stands on the field with first baseman Anthony Rizzo (middle) after the Cubs defeated the Cincinnati Reds 9-0 at Great American Ball Park. Mandatory Credit: David Kohl-USA TODAY Sports /
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Following another series win over the Cincinnati Reds, the Chicago Cubs will return to Wrigley Field for their second homestand of the season. They’ll end the month of April with three games against the Milwaukee Brewers and two of three against the Atlanta Braves.

It’s been a wild ride thus far. Starting out the year with a two-game sweep over the Los Angeles Angels that led to another series claimed in Arizona and at home with the Reds in town. There are a handful of players who stood out this week including Kris Bryant, Addison Russell, David Ross, Jason Hammel, Jake Arrieta and first baseman Anthony Rizzo.

On the same night that ace right-hander Arrieta was putting together his second career no-hitter, Bryant was swinging with nothing but power behind his bat. Having a two-run homer to open things up only to crush a grand slam later on in the game which busted things wide open for the Cubs.

Now, after Hammel worked through six scoreless innings over the Reds, the Cubbies sit at the top of the National League Central Division with a record of 14-5.

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Rizzo, who was in a slump to begin the year, has started to find his groove. He nearly had himself a two home run game back in St. Louis but was robbed of a two-run homer by center fielder Randal Grichuk. Rizzo later responded with a no-doubter.

For the second time in his young career, Anthony has reached eight home runs with at least 20 RBI. The first time came during the 2013 campaign where he finished the month of April with those exact numbers. He currently sits with eight big flies and 21 runs batted in with plenty of time for him to eclipse those stats as he’s primed for what could be an MVP season.

Those eight home runs to begin the year put him at 108 in his career. So far this year, only one of those home runs was recorded at Wrigley Field. Hopefully, he’s able to add a little more during that three-game series and help his team build on to their lead in the division. It’s early but it sure feels great to see them sitting at the top of the pack ahead of the St. Louis Cardinals and Pittsburgh Pirates.

Here are a few stories you may have missed over the weekend:

RECAP: Cubs offense returns; Hammel strong again

Cubs: North Siders on fire to start season

Cubs: Facts and stats from Arrieta’s no-no

Red Sox win 7-5 against Astros in extras‘ – BoSox Injection

Reds Week in Review: April 24, 2016‘ – Blog Red Machine

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