PEORIA, Ariz. — The Cubs sent 11 men to the plate in a six-run fourth inning Thursday on the way to a rout of the Mariners in a Cactus League game at Peoria Stadium.
At one point in the big fourth inning, six Cubs reached base consecutively with two outs. Mark Zagunis, Albert Almora Jr. and Javy Baez doubled in the inning.
Big game for Rizzo
Anthony Rizzo singled and scored in the first, hit a solo homer to right in the third and singled to center with two outs for another RBI in the Cubs’ six-run fourth.
He was 4-for-15 without a homer this spring until then.
Jen-Ho Tseng, an important part of the Cubs’ pitching depth this year, retired all six batters he faced in relief of prospect Duncan Robinson, including a strikeout of Mitch Haniger.
Tseng was knocked around in his two previous appearances this spring (eight hits, eight runs in 2 2/3 innings).
Staying behind and avoiding the night game on the road, starter Yu Darvish looked sharp in four scoreless innings in a simulated game against minor-leaguers, with starting catcher Willson Contreras working behind the plate.
Darvish allowed only one hit and a walk and struck out three.
“The ball was really crisp out of his hand, threw some good breaking balls and had command of the strike zone,” manager Joe Maddon said. “Overall, a really positive day.”
Left-hander Mike Montgomery, who got a late start to his spring work because of shoulder soreness early in camp, pitched two innings of the sim game in Mesa, his second outing of the spring.
He could see his first Cactus League action Tuesday or Wednesday. The linchpin swingman remains on track to open the season on time.
Split squad: Angels at Cubs, Mesa, 2:05 p.m. Saturday, cubs.com radio, Griffin Canning vs. Alec Mills; Cubs at Giants, Scottsdale, 2:05 p.m., Cole Hamels vs. Dereck Rodriguez.