CINCINNATI — Eugenio Suarez ended his slump with Cincinnati’s longest homer of the season, Anthony DeSclafani pitched six scoreless innings and the Reds held off the Chicago Cubs 8-6 Sunday.
Phillip Ervin and Nick Senzel drove in two runs each, and Raisel Iglesias escaped with a six-out save despite allowing Jason Heyward’s three-run homer in the ninth. Kyle Schwarber also had a late connection for the Cubs.
Chicago starter Jon Lester (7-6) hadn’t lost to the Reds since 2016, a streak of seven straight starts. The Cubs have dropped 3 of 4 and finished June 14-15, their first losing month since May 2017.
Yasiel Puig stole two bases a day after a shouting match with Chicago reliever Pedro Strop — Puig was upset after being hit by a 3-0 pitch. He scored after both stolen bases thanks to Ervin’s singles, including one during a four-run eighth. Senzel added a two-run single during the big frame.
Suarez, hitting .155 over his previous 22 games, blasted Lester’s 3-2 pitch a projected 457 feet into a party structure atop the batter’s eye in the first inning. The three-run shot gave him 17 homers this season.
DeSclafani (5-4) ended his day by striking out David Bote with two runners on and celebrated with a fist pump. He struck out seven and allowed five hits and a walk.
Schwarber capped a three-run seventh with his 18th homer. Chicago got the potential go-ahead runs to second and third in the eighth before Iglesias coaxed Albert Almora Jr. into an inning-ending foul popup. Heyward’s shot in the ninth cut the deficit to two, but Iglesias was able to finish his 14th save.
Lester allowed four runs – three earned – on five hits and two walks. He tied his season high with eight strikeouts.