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WATCH: Chicago Cubs down Cincinnati Reds for rare series win

Aug 18, 2021; Cincinnati, Ohio, USA; Chicago Cubs left fielder Ian Happ (right) celebrates in the dugout after hitting a solo home run against the Cincinnati Reds during the first inning at Great American Ball Park. Mandatory Credit: David Kohl-USA TODAY Sports
Aug 18, 2021; Cincinnati, Ohio, USA; Chicago Cubs left fielder Ian Happ (right) celebrates in the dugout after hitting a solo home run against the Cincinnati Reds during the first inning at Great American Ball Park. Mandatory Credit: David Kohl-USA TODAY Sports

Ian Happ and Michael Hermosillo each hit early homers Wednesday afternoon as the visiting Chicago Cubs earned a rare series win by beating the Cincinnati Reds, 7-1.

The Cubs, who lost 12 straight before winning Tuesday night, won a set for just the third time in 18 series dating back to mid-June. Both of Chicago’s previous series wins came over the Arizona Diamondbacks, who entered Wednesday with the worst record in the National League.

The Reds, who began Wednesday 1 1/2 games behind the San Diego Padres in the race for the NL’s second wild card, have lost six of 10.

Happ hit a two-out solo homer in the first off Tyler Mahle (10-4).

The Cubs scored four times in the second, when David Bote drew a leadoff walk and Hermosillo followed with his first big-league homer in almost three years. Rafael Ortega added a two-out RBI single and Frank Schwindel followed with an RBI double.

Hermosillo’s homer aided Cubs spot starter Adrian Sampson, off whom he hit his first round-tripper on Sept. 24, 2018, when he played for the Los Angeles Angels and Sampson was pitching for the Texas Rangers.

Sampson, who spent the 2020 season pitching in Korea, was recalled from Triple-A Iowa prior to the game and allowed one run on five hits and two walks while striking out two over four innings. It was Sampson’s first major league start since Aug. 3, 2019, with the Rangers.

A quartet of relievers combined on five innings of one-hit ball, with Manuel Rodriguez (1-2) earning his first big-league win after succeeding Sampson and striking out three over two hitless innings.

Sergio Alcantara homered in the sixth and Matt Duffy had three hits, including an RBI bunt single in the ninth.

Tyler Naquin homered in the second for the Reds while Jose Barrero had a pair of hits.

Mahle allowed five runs on eight hits and one walk while striking out five over five innings.

–Field Level Media