Offense can’t seize opportunities as Cubs fall to Pirates in series finale
The Cubs scored just only runs despite having the leadoff man on base in four innings Thursday.
The Cubs had their chances in their 6-2 loss Thursday to the Pirates, but after two big offensive performances, they were unable to keep the success going.
The Cubs created a lot of traffic and put the leadoff man on base in the third, fourth, sixth and the eighth innings. They even had an opportunity with the bases loaded and one out in the sixth, but Jason Kipnis struck out and Cameron Maybin flied out to end the threat.
One pitch cost right-hander Alec Mills. Bryan Reynolds golfed a three-run home run to right field in a four-run third that would prove to be all the Pirates would need. Mills allowed four runs and seven hits in five innings.
‘‘We had some chances to add some runs early on and didn’t do that,’’ manager David Ross said. ‘‘That’ll catch up to you at some point. Alec threw the ball pretty well, I thought. That [home run] hurt him.’’
Happ leaves with bruised eye
There might not be a more irreplaceable player on the Cubs this season than switch-hitting center fielder Ian Happ. He has been a revelation at the top of the lineup.
The Cubs, however, lost Happ in the fourth inning after he took a foul ball off of his right eye. He fouled off a 1-2 pitch from Pirates starter JT Brubaker in front of home plate, and the ball bounced straight up and hit him as he was finishing his swing.
Happ was dazed and immediately went down to a knee as he was attended to by trainer PJ Mainville. After getting back to his feet, he left the game and was taken for X-rays, which were negative. He was diagnosed with a bruise over his right eye.
Happ leads the Cubs in batting average, hits, doubles, RBI, walks and OPS and is tied for the team lead in home runs.