Reds rough up Kyle Hendricks again as Cubs fall

Hendricks allowed five runs in six innings in the Cubs’ 6-5 loss to the Reds. He has a 9.58 ERA in two starts against them this season.

SHARE Reds rough up Kyle Hendricks again as Cubs fall

AP Photo/Aaron Doster

The Reds have been a nuisance for Cubs right-hander Kyle Hendricks in his career, and that has carried over into the 2020 season.

Hendricks again didn’t have an answer for them in a 6-5 loss Friday in Cincinnati as the Cubs dropped the first game of the second half of their season.

After being staked to a 2-0 lead on home runs by Anthony Rizzo and Kyle Schwarber in the first inning, Hendricks yielded a homer of his own to Eugenio Suarez in the second.

‘‘Physically, I felt fine,’’ Hendricks said. ‘‘Just disappointing. Just not in a good spot right now. Just not making enough good pitches. I really just need better in general for my guys and to keep us in the game.’’

The Reds took the lead by scoring twice in the fourth on a tying homer by Jesse Winker and a go-ahead single by Matt Davidson.

Hendricks looked to have figured things out in the fifth, getting two quick outs. But they quickly got out of hand after a single by Nick Castellanos and a double by Winker put runners in scoring position.

Hendricks following by jamming Suarez, who made just enough contact to flare the ball into the outfield and drive in two more runs for a 5-2 lead.

‘‘It’s one of two things right now,’’ Hendricks said. ‘‘I’m either a little too predictable, so when I do make a good pitch, they’re kind of on it. That was probably the case there. Or I’m just not getting away with the bad pitches that I make. I’m making too many bad pitches. Just gotta reassess.’’

‘‘I thought that they did a good job beating some shifts,’’ manager David Ross said of the Reds. ‘‘Hitting the ball to the other side. . . . The ball that fell for the two runs was big. I thought they worked hard. Got some knocks to fall and popped some homers. I don’t think the results that [Hendricks] got were indicative of how he was pitching.’’

Hendricks allowed five runs and 10 hits, struck out six and walked none in six innings. He has a 9.58 ERA in two starts against the Reds this season and a 2.36 ERA in his other five starts.

The Cubs’ offense looked as though it was going to have a big night after Rizzo and Schwarber homered in the first, but things cooled off quickly as Reds starter Tyler Mahle settled down and dominated the lineup, striking out a season-high 11 in 6‰ innings.

The Cubs managed only three hits in eight innings before getting three more in the ninth, including back-to-back homers from Willson Contreras and Jason Heyward.

The Cubs scored three runs in the ninth for the second consecutive game before the rally fell short again.

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