Chicago Cubs Score and Recap (8/21/22): Brewers 5, Cubs 2 – Cubs Bullpen Breaks Down, Brewers Manage to Avoid Sweep

The Cubs were trying to complete a sweep of the Milwaukee Brewers on a beautiful Sunday afternoon at Wrigley Field. Things were looking good early before a bullpen meltdown gave the road team a victory.

Ian Happ gave the Cubs a lead with a solo home run, career dinger number 100, off of Brandon Woodruff in the bottom of the 1st inning. Justin Steele was really on his game Sunday striking out seven batters in the first three innings of his day.

Seiya Suzuki doubled Chicago’s advantage in the 4th inning with his own solo homer off of Woodruff. Steele kept things right there with six excellent frames of work but this time the bullpen would not hold up as well.

Rowdy Tellez hammered a long solo shot of his own with Mark Leiter Jr. on the mound in the 7th. Brandon Hughes took over for Leiter and suffered a similar fate when Keston Hiura hit a game-tying home run and just like that, it was a brand new game.

Willy Adames hit a sacrifice fly with Rowan Wick pitching in the top of the 8th inning to give Milwaukee a 3-2 edge. Hiura put the game on ice with a two-run homer in the top of the 9th. (Box score)

Why the Cubs Lost

Other than the two solo home runs, the Cubs offense could get absolutely nothing going on Sunday against Woodruff and Company.

Eye on the Future

  • Steele certainly was extremely good once again on Sunday: 6 IP, 0 R, 2 H, 9 K, and 1 BB.
  • Suzuki had a double, a single, and a walk, in addition to his home run.

Taking Note

  • Happ is starting to drive the ball more after not hitting for much power early in the season.

Bottom Line

A sweep would have been nice but it is not surprising the Cubs bullpen finally had a bad game. The big takeaway, yet again, is that Steele is looking more and more like a legit top-end starting pitcher. He should be a lock in the rotation for 2023.

On Deck

The Cubs welcome the St. Louis Cardinals to beautiful and historic Wrigley Field for five games starting Monday at 7:05pm CT. It’s a battle of lefties between Drew Smyly and Jordan Montgomery that will be available on Marquee Sports Network and 670 The Score.

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