Chicago Cubs Score and Recap (3/24/23): Guardians 5, Cubs 3 – Sampson’s Homer Issues Return

The Cubs played the second half of their split-squad games Friday night in Goodyear against Cleveland Guardians. Chicago featured a lineup with fewer starters than the home game earlier in the day and would lose the nightcap.

Edwin Ríos and Luis Torrens hit back-to-back doubles off of Zach Plesac in the top of the 1st inning to go ahead 2-0. Adrian Sampson continued his spring home run struggles, giving up consecutive dingers to Jose Ramirez and Josh Bell in the bottom of the frame to tie the score.

A Tucker Barnhart sacrifice fly briefly gave the Cubs the lead in the 5th inning, but it was again short-lived when Myles Straw cracked Cleveland’s third solo home run of the game against Sampson in the bottom half. Manny Rodriguez, already sent down to minor-league camp, gave up a pair of runs in the 6th to provide the winning margin. (Box score)

Why the Cubs Lost

The offense could not get much going after the first inning and Cleveland eventually pulled ahead.

Stats That Matter

  • Sampson was not horrible but the long ball bit hard again: 5 IP, 3 R, 7 H, 4 K, and 1 BB.
  • Barnhart had a hit in addition to the sacrifice fly.

Bottom Line

It seems likely Sampson will begin the season in Iowa or be designated for assignment. His performance has just not been close to on par with Hayden Wesneski.

On Deck

The Cubs head to Tempe to battle the Los Angeles Angels Saturday at 3:05pm CT. Roenis Elías has returned from Team Cuba and gets the start with the usual Marquee broadcast available.

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