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Anthony Rizzo sparks rally as Cubs beat Reds in extras

Anthony Rizzo sparks rally as Cubs beat Reds in extras

CINCINNATI (AP) -- With another dramatic homer, the Cubs showed they are still masters of the big comeback.

Anthony Rizzo tied it with a two-out, three-run homer in the ninth, and Kris Bryant hit a sacrifice fly in the 11th inning on Friday night, rallying the Chicago Cubs to a 6-5 victory over the Cincinnati Reds, a team they've dominated the last few years.


The Cubs won for the 19th time in their last 23 games against the Reds and for the 16th time in their last 20 games at Great American Ball Park.

This one felt very familiar.

The Cubs swept to their World Series championship with one late comeback after another, including the 10-inning Game 7 victory in Cleveland. This week, they've pulled out three wins by overcoming a three-run deficit each time.

"That's what we always say: Comeback kids," Rizzo said. "In the ninth, we're saying, 'Here's the comeback.' That's our cliche motto, but it's true."

Chicago stranded a pair of runners in the sixth, seventh and eighth innings before breaking through in the ninth against Michael Lorenzen. Miguel Montero singled, Kyle Schwarber doubled, and Rizzo hit the Cubs' third homer of the game.

Lorenzen left a pitch up and in, right where Rizzo was looking for it .

"He's Anthony Rizzo for a reason," Lorenzen said. "Stuff like this happens. What separates you is how you handle it."

Bryant's sacrifice fly off Robert Stephenson (0-1) sent the Cubs to another pulsating win.

"I don't know," manager Joe Maddon said. "It's so entertaining, isn't it?"

Carl Edwards Jr. (1-0) retired the side in the 10th, and Wade Davis got the three outs for his fourth save in as many chances.

Tim Adleman lasted six innings in his first start this season and doubled home a pair of runs off left-hander Jon Lester, helping the Reds take a 5-2 lead. Adleman moved into Cincinnati's injury-depleted rotation and drove in as many runs as he allowed. He gave up solo homers by Jason Heyward and Javier Baez in six innings.

It was a breakout game offensively for the Reds, who had managed only four hits in their previous two games and one run in 26 innings. Plus, Lester hadn't allowed more than one run in any of his three starts this season.

Adam Duvall hit the first homer allowed by Lester in the fifth inning. Lester gave up five runs in 5 2/3 innings.

Cubs Talk Podcast: This will be the toughest championship for any team to win

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USA TODAY

Cubs Talk Podcast: This will be the toughest championship for any team to win

In the most unprecedented season in MLB history, teams must go through a tough shortened season in possibly the most difficult run in baseball history.

David Kaplan and Gordon Wittenmyer discuss the level of difficulty for teams to win a championship this year, plus the anniversary of the Ryan Dempster trade and the details that surrounded it. Later, Kaplan interviews Joan Ryan, author of the book "Intangiblesm" about the importance of team chemistry in difficult times.

(1:51) - Is coronavirus testing for the Cubs improving?

(7:10) - Yu Darvish speaks on the playing in the pandemic

(11:30) - Ryan Dempster trade anniversary

(19:15) - Joan Ryan interview

Click to download the MyTeams App for the latest Cubs news and analysis.

(20:40) - Importance of team chemistry in winning

(26:00) - Analytics vs. chemistry

Listen here or below.

Cubs Talk Podcast

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How Cubs pitcher Kyle Hendricks strengthened his case to start Opening Day

How Cubs pitcher Kyle Hendricks strengthened his case to start Opening Day

The Cubs haven’t yet announced their Opening Day starter, but Kyle Hendricks made a strong case for himself Tuesday night.

Tuesday’s intrasquad scrimmage was the closest the Cubs have had come to a real game all Summer Camp. An MLB umpiring crew joined the team on the field. The Cubs played eight innings, two more than they’d reached before. And Hendricks was dominant.

The right-hander threw over six scoreless innings. With the flexibility of an intrasquad setting, Kyle Schwarber’s fly out to right was the third, but not the final, out of the sixth.  News rippled through the field that they were staying out for one more batter.

Click to download the MyTeams App for the latest Cubs news and analysis.

Hendricks had thrown 66 pitches – a number the Cubs could work with on opening day – but even an extra batter didn’t mar his outing. Jason Heyward grounded out to first base.

Cubs pitching coach Tommy Hottovy has put extra emphasis on in-game recovery during this three-week Summer camp.

“Obviously we want to get the pitch count ramped up,” Hottovy said this week, “but getting those up and downs too is equally important to see how your body recovers in between innings and how you feel.”

In that area, Hendricks has progressed further than any other Cubs pitcher.

Yu Darvish started for the opposite team Tuesday and is the other obvious candidate to start on Opening Day. But Darvish threw less than four innings and gave up a home run to Willson Contreras—it was the catcher’s third homer of Summer Camp. Darvish also walked two batters, including leadoff hitter Kris Bryant in the first inning.

Still, nothing is decided.

“We might have a pending test in two days and have to shuffle our entire schedule and rotation,” Hottovy said Monday. “A lot of this is going to be how we get through this next week healthy, with the testing protocols in place. And then we can start really lining up what we want to do when it starts.”

The Cubs open the season against the Brewers at Wrigley Field on July 24.

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