Davies get hit by liner, then roughed up in Cubs loss
Zach Davies seemed to be doing OK Friday until getting pegged by a line drive on the right leg to start the third inning.
He said he was OK, but the results told a different story.
The Miami Marlins scored 5 runs after Davies was struck, capped off by a grand slam from Adam Duvall, and the Cubs lost 10-2 in their return to Wrigley Field.
This was the Cubs' worst loss since April 28, when they were shut out 10-0 by Atlanta and used three position players on the mound. This time, Ross cleared the bench in the eighth inning, pulling Anthony Rizzo, Kris Bryant, Javy Baez and Willson Contreras from the game.
"For me as a pitcher, as a competitor, I want to stay in the game," Davies said. "It tightens up, it does whatever it does. But at the same time, I can still go out there and make pitches, I felt like I could make pitches. I felt like outside of that inning, I did a pretty good job. You never want to come out of the game and leave your bullpen with a long game like that, so for me, I'm going to be in there."
The only runs from the Cubs were two homers by Joc Pederson, who led off both the first and third innings with solo shots to right.
The Cubs haven't scored without using a home run since the third inning of last Sunday's win over St. Louis, when an Eric Sogard double and three singles from Pederson, Bryant and Rizzo plated a pair of runs.
"I don't really care how we score runs," Cubs manager David Ross said. "It's whether we win games and we do score. I think at times you're going to go through moments when you hit home runs and score some runs. You've got to get guys on base in front of the home runs. I think that maters, right? Just got to move the baseball around, get a little more contact. I think we're getting some good at-bats at times, just not able to string it together throughout the lineup."
Davies finished with a career-high 8 runs allowed. He retired the side in order during the first two innings.
But on the second pitch of the third, Marlins catcher Jorge Alfaro rifled a line drive up the middle. Davies instinctively lifted his right leg to protect himself and the ball appeared to hit him on the side of the knee.
The next batter, Jon Berti, lined a single to center field and pitcher Cody Peteet bunted the runners over. That was actually an interesting play, as Rizzo made one of his trademark charges for the bunt, picked it up on the third base side of the mound, and could have forced Alfaro at third, but third baseman Patrick Wisdom also went for the ball and wasn't covering the bag.
It turned out not to matter. Davies walked Jazz Chisolm and Starling Marte, forcing in a run. After getting a pop out, right fielder Duvall launched a grand slam to left field.
"It seemed as if they were sitting off-speed the whole time," Davies said. "Going through each hitter, you still want to pitch to your strengths, and that for me is changeup. Looking back on it, it seemed as if they really wanted to hit that pitch. You make mistakes and you learn from it and try to adjust."
The Cubs nearly built a bigger advantage in the first inning. After Pederson's homer, Bryant walked and Baez hit one of those fly balls that was deep enough to land in the seats, but it found the well in left field and missed the basket by a couple feet.
Davies found more trouble in the sixth. The Marlins collected two singles and a walk, while Davies helped himself by picking Jesus Sanchez off first. But with two outs, Berti drilled a 3-run homer, giving Miami an 8-2 lead.
There was a mound visit before Berti's at-bat, where it appeared maybe Ross made the wrong choice by leaving Davies in the game. But that didn't matter after Duvall cranked his second homer of the game, off Dan Winkler in the seventh.