CHICAGO – Homer Bailey pitched six scoreless innings at friendly Wrigley Field for his first win of the season and Jay Bruce homered and doubled as the Cincinnati Reds beat the Chicago Cubs 8-2 on Sunday.
Zack Cozart hit a two-run homer for Cincinnati, which took two of three this weekend from the Cubs and has won 17 of its last 19 games at Wrigley Field.
Bailey (1-1) struck out eight while allowing six hits and three walks.
The Reds have won 10 straight when Bailey faces the Cubs. He is 7-0 in his last 10 outings against Chicago and 5-0 in his past six at Wrigley Field.
The Cubs have lost six of their last seven.
Carlos Villanueva (1-4) was tagged for five runs and nine hits in 4 2-3 innings.
With two outs in the fourth, Devin Mesoraco and Cozart hit back-to-back RBI doubles to take a 2-0 lead. Mesoraco has a hit in all nine game he’s played this season and leads the team in RBIs with 10. He missed the first week of the season with a strained oblique. Later in the inning, Bailey helped himself with an RBI single to extend the lead to 3-0.
Mesoraco had three hits.
Todd Frazier added an RBI double and Ryan Ludwick a run-scoring single off Villanueva in the fifth inning.
Villanueva wasn’t much better than his previous start at St. Louis. He gave up a career-high nine runs over three-plus innings in a 10-4 loss to St. Louis.
Cubs reliever Jose Veras served up Bruce’s leadoff shot in the seventh and Cozart’s two-run shot two outs later.
Billy Hamilton’s speed caught first baseman Anthony Rizzo and Villanueva by surprise in the third inning. Hamilton hit a routine grounder to Rizzo, but he wasn’t able to get to the base or flip to Villanueva as Hamilton beat both to first. Hamilton stole second base for his seventh stolen base, but was stranded after Villanueva struck out Joey Votto and Brandon Phillips.
In the bottom half, Emilio Bonifacio stole second base, but the call was reversed after a successful challenge by Reds manager Bryan Price.
The Cubs didn’t score until the seventh, getting a pair of RBI singles from Ryan Sweeney and Nate Schierholtz off reliever Manny Parra. Parra was lifted with one out and the bases loaded. Sam LeCure entered and got Welington Castillo to ground into a double play.
Reds reliever Sean Marshall made his season debut in the ninth. He started the season on the DL with a sore left shoulder.