PEORIA, Ariz. — A sloppy game dropped the Cubs (1-8) to their seventh straight Cactus League loss, causing concern to exactly no one in camp.
Of mild concern, however, is the condition of the left knee of left fielder/catcher Kyle Schwarber, who left the game after “tweaking” the knee on the follow-through of a throw home in the second inning.
He said he did not think it was serious enough to sideline him for more than a few days.
Game highlights and notes:
Jon Lester’s first spring outing included just about everything that could go wrong on the field, from seven hits in two innings, three earned runs in the first, three unearned runs (thanks to three errors) in the second and a return of his infield throwing issue.
“Obviously, it wasn’t ideal, but I got through innings, which is good,” he said. “We were able to mix in some other pitches, and threw some good ones and obviously some not so good ones. And we’ll move on from it.”
Right-hander Ryan Williams, starting pitching prospect in his first big-league spring camp, got his first multiple-inning assignment, and followed Lester with two scoreless innings.
The Cubs’ 2015 Minor League Pitcher of the Year (combined 14-3, 2.16 ERA in Class A and AA) put four runners on with a walk and three hits, but he got an inning-ending double play in the third, and catcher David Ross threw out two would-be base stealers in the fourth.
Williams struck out two and has three scoreless innings overall this spring.
Getting his third start in center, super-utility player Javy Baez doubled and homered, driving in two with his first homer of the spring, a two-out shot to left-center in the seventh.
“He looks good right now,” manager Joe Maddon said.
Closer Hector Rondon, making his second appearance in a game workload that will be limited to keep him fresh, gave up a quick double, RBI single and another single to the first three batters he face.
But he then struck out Ed Lucas and got ex-Cub Steve Clevenger to ground into an inning-ending double play.
Reds at Cubs, Mesa, Ariz., 2:05 p.m., mlb.com audio, Robert Stephenson vs. John Lackey.