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Chicago Cubs extend win streak, defeat Cincinnati Reds

Sep 6, 2021; Chicago, Illinois, USA; Chicago Cubs left fielder Ian Happ (8) runs the bases after hitting a three run home run against the Cincinnati Reds during the first inning at Wrigley Field. Mandatory Credit: David Banks-USA TODAY Sports
Sep 6, 2021; Chicago, Illinois, USA; Chicago Cubs left fielder Ian Happ (8) runs the bases after hitting a three run home run against the Cincinnati Reds during the first inning at Wrigley Field. Mandatory Credit: David Banks-USA TODAY Sports

Frank Schwindel had two hits, including a go-ahead RBI single in the eighth inning, and Ian Happ belted a three-run home run as the host Chicago Cubs topped the Cincinnati Reds 4-3 on Monday to extend their winning streak to seven games.

One day after thumping a go-ahead, seventh inning grand slam to key an 11-8 win against Pittsburgh, Schwindel again provided late offensive heroics, grounding a base hit to the right side against Reds reliever Michael Lorenzen.

Schwindel is batting .441 with 14 RBIs during an eight-game hitting streak.

The Cubs (64-75) established a new season-high winning streak with the victory. The team previously won six straight from May 23-29. Chicago was mired in a 6-20 skid before beginning its current tear with a 3-1 interleague win at Minnesota on Aug. 31.

Nick Castellanos and Aristides Aquino had two hits apiece for the Reds (73-66), who have lost seven of nine. Willson Contreras had two hits for Chicago.

Adam Morgan notched his second save of the season, retiring pinch-hitter Joey Votto on a lineout to end the game and cap a perfect ninth.

Scott Effross (2-0) was the winner with two innings of one-hit, one-strikeout relief. Lorenzen fell to 0-2, allowing one run and three hits in the eighth.

Cubs rookie left-hander Justin Steele cruised through five innings before scuffling in the sixth, sandwiching a leadoff walk and a hit-by-pitch around Castellanos’ second double of the game. Steele then hit Asdrubal Cabrera with a pitch after getting ahead in the count 0-2, forcing in the Reds’ first run.

Cincinnati tied the game against reliever Codi Heuer, benefiting from a Heuer wild pitch and a pinch-hit RBI double from Max Schrock.

Steele spaced three runs and four hits in five innings with two walks and four strikeouts.

Reds starter Sonny Gray allowed three runs and three hits in five innings with eight strikeouts and zero walks. Gray settled down after yielding a pair of hits in the first inning — including Happ’s three-run shot — retiring 11 straight Cubs before Jason Heyward tripled with two outs in the fourth.

–Field Level Media