MLB Baseball

Final 1 2 3   4 5 6   7 8 9   R H E
Cincinnati2 0 1 3 1 0 0 0 2 9190
Chi Cubs0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 022
  W: H. Greene (1-4)   L: J. Steele (6-2)
11:20 AM PT12:20 PM MT1:20 PM CT2:20 PM ET14:20 ET18:20 GMT2:20 11:20 AM MST1:20 PM EST1:50 PM VEN22:20 UAE12:20 PM CT, May 26, 2023
Wrigley Field, Chicago, Illinois  Attendance: 31,946

Cubs' Justin Steele aims to hold down scuffling Reds

According to STATS
According to STATS

Cincinnati Reds at Chicago Cubs

  1. The Reds and Cubs combined to score 30 runs in their rain-shortened two-game series in Cincinnati last month (April 3-4), with a 7-6 Reds victory followed by a 12-5 win for the Cubs. The Cubs' 50-29 (.633) record against the Reds at Wrigley Field since 2014 is their best home mark versus any of their Central Division rivals over the last 10 seasons.
  2. Reds starting pitchers are 7-17 with a 6.04 ERA this season. They rank next-to-last in the majors in both wins and earned-run average by starters this year, with the Athletics last in both categories (two wins, 7.17 ERA). Oakland and Cincinnati are the only MLB teams that do not have at least one pitcher with three or more wins as a starter this season.
  3. Hunter Greene is 0-4 with a 4.68 ERA in his 10 starts this year. Greene is the first pitcher in the modern era (1901 to date) to start an Opening Day game for the Reds and go winless in his first 10 starts for them that season.
  4. The Cubs are one of the four teams in the majors that have not been shut out this season, along with the Diamondbacks, Angels and Blue Jays. The only other seasons in which the Cubs scored at least one run in each of their first 49 (or more) games are all before 1900: 1889 (114 games), 1898 (91 games) and 1887 (57 games).
  5. Dansby Swanson's first-inning home run accounted for the Cubs' only run in their loss to the Mets last night. Swanson has the third highest OPS as a shortstop in the major leagues this season (.783), behind Toronto's Bo Bichette (.868) and Tampa Bay's Wander Franco (.853).
  6. Justin Steele is 4-0 with a 1.48 ERA in his five starts at Wrigley Field this season, including a win in each of his last four home starts. Steele was 3-4 with a 2.78 ERA in his 14 starts at Wrigley Field last season.
Notes Applicable For Series Dates: 5/26/2023 thru 5/28/2023

Justin Steele appears to have bounced back from the first rough portion on his otherwise stellar start to the season for the Chicago Cubs.

Meanwhile, Cincinnati's Hunter Greene is still aiming for his elusive first victory in 2023.

One of the under-the-radar, early-season stars, Steele looks to build on another strong outing when the Cubs open a three-game home series against Greene and the Reds on Friday.

After posting a 1.49 ERA in his final 10 starts of 2022, Steele (6-1, 2.20 ERA) ranks among the major league leaders in wins (tied for fourth), ERA (sixth), WHIP (1.01, 10th) and opponents' batting average (.212, 15th) this season.

On May 10 and May 16, the left-hander allowed a combined eight runs -- one more than yielded through his first seven starts -- over 12 innings against the St. Louis Cardinals and the Houston Astros. However, he rebounded on Sunday to throw six scoreless innings, while giving up four hits and striking out six, during a no-decision against the Philadelphia Phillies.

"I think he's taken that next step of confidence and learning (about) himself," Cubs catcher Yan Gomes said. "He's a great guy. He puts in a lot of work, and it's paying off."

Steele, though, hasn't enjoyed success against the Reds, going 1-2 with a 7.58 ERA in six career games (four starts).

He will look to help the Cubs build on a series win over the visiting Mets this week, though New York took the finale of the three-game set 10-1 on Thursday. Chicago entered that series coming off a 2-7 road trip.

The Cubs are five games under .500 but 13-12 at Wrigley Field, where Cincinnati has lost three straight and six of eight dating back to last June. Mired in a 3-8 overall stretch, the Reds fell 2-1 against St. Louis on Thursday to conclude a 2-5 homestand.

Greene (0-4, 4.68 ERA) will try an 11th time to earn a victory this season. The Reds have lost all four May starts by the right-hander, who went 0-3 with a 6.95 ERA and allowed seven home runs in those outings.

"There are so many factors to getting a win in this game," Greene said. "I never focus on that."

On Sunday, Greene yielded four runs, four hits, including two homers, and three walks while striking out 10 over a season-high seven innings in a 4-1 loss to the New York Yankees.

"That was a step in the right direction," Reds manager David Bell said. "He did his job."

Each of Greene's three previous appearances against the Cubs came when he was a rookie last season, and he went 2-1 with a 4.80 ERA. Chicago's Nico Hoerner, Christopher Morel and Ian Happ are a combined 6-for-17 (.353) vs. Greene.

Morel, who had his 13-game hitting streak end Thursday, batted .322 with three homers and 11 RBIs in 16 games against Cincinnati last season. Teammate Seiya Suzuki, who is 1-for-5 against Greene, is batting .370 (17-for-46) with five homers and 10 RBIs in his past 13 contests.

Cincinnati's Spencer Steer has never faced Steele but is batting .411 (14-for-34) with one homer and six RBIs during an eight-game hitting streak. Teammate TJ Friedl, batting .321 through 39 games this season, has six multi-hit games in 11 games this month.

--Field Level Media

Updated May 26, 2023

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