Chicago Cubs’ pitching staff can’t hold back Seattle Mariner bats after rally giving up four runs in the 9th in 8-6, loss.
It was a chance for the Chicago Cubs pitching staff to make a statement. Both Mike Montgomery and Brett Anderson saw time on the mound, but neither separated themselves for the final rotation spot. Wade Davis and Brian Duensing struggled, putting the offense behind. They could not keep up.
Montgomery took the mound in Sloan park, starting for the Chicago Cubs as they face the Seattle Mariners. The first inning was rather clean, allowing a hit, two soft grounders, and striking out Danny Valencia to end the inning. Anthony Rizzo homered to right-center in the bottom of the inning to give the Cubs an opening lead. It was the first home run of the Spring for Rizzo.
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On the second pitch in the top of the second, Mike Zunino nailed his third Spring home run to left field. After another single, Montgomery was able to get out of the inning. His final line was 2.0 innings pitched, 3 hits, 1 run, and 1 strikeout.
Seattle would score a run in each of the next three innings. Two of those game at the expense of Anderson, who gave up five hits in two innings pitched. Wade Davis made his second appearance of the Spring in the fifth inning, with similar results to his last outing. While he was able to complete the inning, he allowed two hits and one run.
Offense comes to life
The Mariners held a 4-1 going into the bottom of the fifth inning, when Taylor Davis and Jon Jay knocked in two more runs for the Cubs. Davis, again, singled in Willson Contreras in the bottom of the seventh, tying the game at 4-4. The Cubs would then take the lead in the eighth as Jacob Hannemann singled home Eloy Jimenez.
But the wheels fell off for the Chicago Cubs in the top of the ninth. Newly acquired reliever Brian Duensing was called upon to close out the game, but was tagged with the loss. A lead off double by Ben Gamel lead to a run batted-in by Boog Powell. Then a single, stolen base, throwing error, another steal, a balk, and a single ended the day for Duensing, who allowed four runs in 0.1 innings pitched.
The Chicago Cubs travel to Peoria, Arizona, as part of a home-and-home series against the Mariners. Seattle sends Chris Heston to the mound, whom has yet to allow a run in four innings of work this Spring. Manager Joe Maddon has not announced who will start for the Cubs on Friday. Game time is set for 2:10 Central Time and will be available on MLB.com.