Dansby Swanson hits a tiebreaking 2-run homer as the Cubs top the Reds 7-5 at a wet Wrigley Field

CHICAGO — Dansby Swanson hit a tiebreaking two-run homer in the eighth inning, and the Chicago Cubs beat the Cincinnati Reds 7-5 on a rainy Saturday night.

Seiya Suzuki committed an ugly error and hit his first career grand slam — in one wild inning — as Chicago won for just the second time in its last 10 games. Nico Hoerner walked twice, scored two runs and drove in another.

Mark Leiter Jr. (2-3) got three outs for the win, and Héctor Neris handled the ninth for his seventh save in nine opportunities.

Spencer Steer had three hits for Cincinnati, which had won five of seven. Jeimer Candelario and Jonathan India each had two.

The start was delayed for almost 3 1/2 hours because of rain, and the showers continued with varying intensity through the first few innings at Wrigley Field.

The game was tied at 5 when Hoerner walked with one out in the eighth against Lucas Sims (1-2). Swanson followed with a drive to left-center on an 0-2 fastball for his fifth homer.

Cincinnati turned Suzuki’s second error of the season into four unearned runs in the second. With two out and the bases loaded, Suzuki had Luke Maile’s routine flyball to right go off his glove before landing in the outfield grass.

All three runners scored, and Stuart Fairchild followed with an RBI single off Justin Steele that lifted the Reds to a 4-0 lead.

Suzuki responded with a big swing in the bottom half, delighting what was left of the announced crowd of 36,430. With two out and the bases loaded on three walks, the Japanese slugger drove a 3-2 fastball from Hunter Greene deep to left for his sixth homer of the season.

Chicago went in front on Hoerner’s RBI single in the third, but Cincinnati tied it at 5 when Candelario singled home Fairchild in the fourth.

Greene allowed three hits in six innings, but he issued five walks and hit two batters. The right-hander went 3-0 with a 1.95 ERA in his previous six starts.

Steele permitted one earned run and seven hits in five innings. The left-hander struck out five and walked four.


Cubs: RHP Julian Merryweather (rib stress fracture) won’t be back until some point after the All-Star break, according to manager Craig Counsell. … RHP Yency Almonte (shoulder strain) is ramping up the intensity of his throwing program. “But he’s still in a phase of just playing catch, throwing program in the outfield right now,” Counsell said. “Not on a mound yet, so a ways to go.”


Reds left-hander Nick Lodolo (4-2, 3.12 ERA) and Cubs right-hander Ben Brown (1-1, 2.72) start the series finale on Sunday afternoon. Lodolo pitched 5 1/3 innings of one-run ball in a 3-1 victory over St. Louis on Monday. Brown is coming off a dominant performance in Milwaukee, striking out 10 while pitching seven no-hit innings in Chicago’s 6-3 win on Tuesday.


AP MLB: https://apnews.com/hub/mlb

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