The Reds uprising lasted a day before the Cubs imposed their will on Alfredo Simon and his teammates with a 9-0 waxing..
The hot hitting Dexter Fowler and Ben Zobrist got the day off. Cubs' manager Joe Maddon put Tommy La Stella at secondbase, replacing Zobrist and taking Fowler's leadoff spot in the batting order.
LaStella was stellar. He doubled to open the game and scored a minute later on Jason Hayward's single up the middle. Then things got loud.
"La Stella stays ready. He comes ready to play," Cubs' manager Joe Maddon said. "We had a lot of good at bats. It was nice that we could do this without getting Dexter or Zobrist involved. He never gets annoyed that he isn't getting playing time. He understands his role."
“Just poor execution," Bryan Price said." He didn’t have a pitch to finish off anybody today. He said his arm was feeling good. We have to get him back to being sharp and getting his pitches down.”
Anthony Rizzo hit two home runs. La Stella doubled and scored again in the second and hit a home run off Simon's replacement, Drew Hayes.
Meanwhile Jason Hammel with a 2-0 record and an ERA of 1.00 retired the first six Reds with four strikeouts. Tucker Barnhart singled to open the third to dispel any thoughts of a second no-hitter.
"Hammel's that's as good as I've seen him throw a baseball," said Maddon, who managed Hammel in Tampa Bay.. "When he has his command he is really good and his velocity was solid."
The Reds had two base runners in the fourth and the sixth. Joey Votto and Eugenio Suarez had singles while Jay Bruce and Votto drew walks. They didn't score either time.
Simon was charged with eight earned runs on nine hits and a walk. He has given up 16 earned runs in his last three appearances, covering 4 1/3 innings.
“Just a tough lineup," catcher Barnhart said.. "If you make a mistake against them, it’s tough to get it back. It seems like they have a (No.) 3 or 4 hitter coming to the plate every time. He looked great. Stuff-wise, he had everything. He just made a couple of mistakes.”
The Cubs took three our of four games after sweeping the Reds in Chicago.
“They roughed us up in five of the seven games and we lose six of seven. They outplayed us,.” Price said.