The Cubs got more offense Sunday, but it still wasn't enough to pull out the victory.
The Brewers (7-18) set the tone early again and then put the Cubs (13-10) away in the eighth inning en route to a 5-3 victory in front of 33,398 fans at Wrigley Field.
The Brewers scored solo runs in the second, third and fourth innings before breaking a 3-3 tie in the eighth.
"Gotta set the tone better early," Cubs starter Jason Hammel said. "The first inning was nice. But single runs in the next three innings kinda dampens the mood a bit. I kept us in it, but it could've been a lot better."
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Hammel ended up with the minimum requirements for a quality start, tossing six innings and allowing three earned runs on five hits and a walk while striking out four. He admitted he didn't have a good feel for the ball Sunday as he's dealing with a nail/blister issue on his pitching hand.
Cubs reliever Pedro Strop had a rough eighth inning, giving up a double and a bunt base hit before plunking Jean Segura on the forehead with a high fastball in a scary moment on the field.
Play was halted for a few minutes as the Brewers tended to Segura, who initially tried to stay in the game before calling time and pulling himself off first base for a pinch-runner.
"Definitely a scary moment," Cubs catcher Miguel Montero said. "It really scared me. I went down with [Segura] to see how he was, but I just couldn't say anything, so I just moved to the side and called the trainers."
Montero said he thought Segura's helmet broke as he saw a piece of plastic fly off immediately.
Strop was shaken up, but said he had been in touch with the Cubs and Brewers training staffs and planned to reach out to Segura.
Strop was given some time to breathe and get back to the task at hand when play resumed, getting Ryan Braun to bounce into a 5-2-3 double play.
Maddon called for Strop to intentially walk lefty Adam Lind to load the bases for former Cub Aramis Ramirez, who had already homered in the game. Ramirez fisted a 95 mph fastball into left field for a two-run, game-winning single.
"It's a better matchup," Maddon said of the choice between pitching to Ramirez or Lind. "It's just one of those things under the category of the right thing to do, but it didn't work.
"That doesn't mean it was wrong' it just didn't work out at that time. I'll take Stroppy in that matchup. It's just an unfortunate moment."
Ramirez agreed that Maddon made the correct call.
"It’s the right move," Ramirez said. "Lind has been hitting hard all year. The guy's hitting over .300 and I’m hitting .200."
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The Cubs picked up a run in the bottom of the second on a sacrifice fly from pitcher Jason Hammel. They tied the game in the fifth thanks to some shoddy fielding by the Brewers that led to an Anthony Rizzo RBI triple and Kris Bryant RBI double.
The Cubs had scored just three runs in 31 innings prior to their second-inning tally.
This is the first series the Cubs have lost since April 17-19 against the Padres at Wrigley Field. It's also the first series the Brewers have won all season.
"They got a couple important pieces back in [Carlos] Gomez and Ramriez, but it's Major League Baseball," Hammel said. "There are good teams. You can't keep a team down long.
"Even some of the teams that are struggling the most can find a good game or two here or there. We've all been through it. Pleased we were able to come back and make a game of it, but to get where we want to be, we obviously need to win these games."
The Cubs head to St. Louis for a four-game series with the Cardinals beginning Monday night on Comcast SportsNet.