Here are five takeaways from the Cubs' 4-2 loss over the Cincinnati Reds on Thursday night at the Great American Ball Park.
1) Cubs' five-game winning streak snapped. It was the third time Joe Maddon's squad had a five-game winning streak this season. They were in fine position to pull out a win in the series finale, but a late rally by the Reds doomed the Cubs' chances. The Cubs are now 68-58 on the campaign and hold a three-game lead in the NL Central.
2) Pedro Strop's struggles continue. Strop allowed three more runs — all earned — in the eighth inning to give the Reds a 4-2 lead, and win. In his last seven appearances, the 32-year-old reliever has allowed eight earned runs on nine hits in eight innings. His ERA jumped from 2.96 to 3.44 on the year.
3) Jake Arrieta stays hot. The Cubs pitcher recorded eight strikeouts in 5.2 innings and allowed one run — unearned — on four hits and three walks. In his last 10 starts, Arrieta is 6-2 with a 1.85 ERA and 56 strikeouts.
Jake Arrieta last 10 starts:— Christopher Kamka (@ckamka) August 25, 2017
1.85 ERA, 63.1 IP, 43 Hits, 19 BB, 56 K, 5 HR, 0.979 WHIP#Cubs
4) Kris Bryant returned. The Cubs third baseman was back in the lineup after missing a game with a hand injury. Bryant was hit by a pitch in his left hand on Tuesday and X-Rays came back negative. On Thursday, he went 1-for-3 with a walk, a double and a run.
5) Ian Happ needs one more homer. The 23-year-old hit another dinger, his 19th of the season. Happ is one home run shy of the Cubs having six players with 20 or more homers in the same season, which has never been done in franchise history. He also has five home runs in his last 10 games.