MESA, Ariz. — After Cy Young winners Corey Kluber of the Cleveland Indians and Jake Arrieta of the Cubs finished their starts, the scoring began, the Cubs came out on the wrong end Wednesday at Sloan Park — the Cubs’ sixth consecutive Cactus League loss.
Cy Young showcase
Kluber, the 2014 American League Cy Young winner, and 2015 N.L. winner Arrieta combined for five scoreless innings.
Arrieta retired all six batters he faced, including four strikeouts.
Kluber struck out four and walked a batter in his three innings, earning the win after the Indians scored twice off Pierce Johnson in the third. Kluber loaded the bases with two out in the second but escaped. He finished his outing by striking out Dexter Fowler, Jason Heyward and Ben Zobrist in a 1-2-3 third.
In his first appearance since throwing four wild pitches in a two-batter sequence, left-hander Rex Brothers’ control problems worsened.
He opened the ninth with six consecutive balls and later in the inning started bouncing pitches in front of the plate. Sixteen of his 26 pitches in the inning were balls (two walks). Of the 10 strikes, only two were called, and one was ripped into the left-field corner for a run-scoring double).
Candelario lights up
Class AAA third baseman Jeimer Candelario, ranked by Baseball America among the Cubs’ top 10 prospects after a breakout 2015 season and fall league, had one of only two Cubs’ hits against Kluber and later homered to center off Josh Tomlin for the Cubs’ only run until the ninth.
He finished 2-for-3 in the game.
It’s only spring; the games don’t count; guys are working on things; minor leaguers are playing lots of innings; etc. So take it for what it’s worth, but eight games into the Cactus League schedule, the Cubs have one victory and are averaging 2.4 runs and 5.8 hits a game (.184 average).
Cubs at Mariners, Peoria, Ariz., 2:05 p.m., mlb.com audio, Jon Lester vs. Wade Miley.