CHICAGO (AP) — Slumping sluggers Anthony Rizzo and Kyle Schwarber homered, rookie Ian Happ connected again and the Chicago Cubs beat Cincinnati 9-5 Tuesday night, giving manager Joe Maddon his 1,000th career win.
Maddon’s victories have come with the Angels, Rays and reigning World Series champion Cubs.
Happ hit his second homer in his third major league game and Addison Russell also went deep as Chicago returned to .500 after a lackluster road trip. NL MVP Kris Bryant added two hits in his first appearance after missing three games with an illness.
The Cubs (19-19) had dropped seven of nine, including four of their last six at division leaders Colorado and St. Louis.
Schwarber’s continued trouble in the leadoff spot and the shaky performance so far by the rotation had created some angst for a fan base expecting more of the same after Chicago’s historic crown last year, but no one seemed a bit worried around the team.
“If people want to sell low on the Cubs, sell their stock, we’ll buy,” president of baseball operations Theo Epstein said. “We still really believe in this team. We know how good we can and will be when we get it locked in.”
Willson Contreras had two hits and two RBIs, and John Lackey (4-3) pitched into the sixth inning in the opener of a 10-game homestand.
Joey Votto, Zack Cozart and Tucker Barnhart homered for the Reds on a warm and windy night at Wrigley Field. But Bronson Arroyo (3-3) was hit hard in five innings, allowing five runs and eight hits.
Schwarber was hitless in 17 at-bats before he belted a drive in the second inning that landed near the back of the bleachers in right. He singled down the third-base line in the sixth and scored on Happ’s bases-loaded walk for a 7-3 lead.
After Votto’s two-run shot got Cincinnati within two in the seventh, Russell went deep in the bottom half and Rizzo added his seventh of the season in the eighth. Rizzo went 2 for 16 on Chicago’s road trip.
The Reds will promote left-hander Amir Garrett from Triple-A Louisville to start Thursday’s series finale against the Cubs. Right-hander Lisalverto Bonilla will start Friday in the opener of three-game set at home against Colorado. Garrett is 3-2 with a 4.25 ERA in six starts with Cincinnati this year. … The Reds claimed first baseman/outfielder Peter O’Brien off waivers from Kansas City on Tuesday and optioned him to Louisville. Left-hander Brandon Finnegan, who is out with a shoulder injury, was transferred to the 60-day disabled list to make room on the 40-man roster.
Reds: Manager Bryan Price said he is hoping RHP Tim Adleman will be able to make his next start Saturday against the Rockies. Adleman left Sunday’s 8-3 loss at San Francisco with a neck strain. “We will have to monitor it to make sure we can comfortably allow him to start that game without having to go through what he went through last time,” Price said.
Cubs: OF Jason Heyward took live batting practice on the field. Heyward is on the 10-day disabled list with a sore knuckle on his right hand. … 2B Ben Zobrist (back) was out of the starting lineup, Maddon said he could have played. “His back is still not 100 percent. … I just want to be very careful with him, quite frankly,” Maddon said. … OF Jon Jay (back) pinch-hit in the seventh and lined out to center.
Right-handers Kyle Hendricks of the Cubs and Scott Feldman of the Reds face off on Wednesday night. Hendricks (2-2, 3.40 ERA) is 1-1 with a 1.52 ERA in his last four starts. Feldman (2-3, 3.59 ERA) also is pitching well, going 1-0 with a 1.13 ERA in his last two outings.
More AP baseball: https://apnews.com/tag/MLBbaseball
Jay Cohen can be reached at http://www.twitter.com/jcohenap