Cody Bellinger Hits a Grand Slam, Cubs Beat Red Sox 10-4
Cody Bellinger hit a grand slam to back a solid effort by pitcher Marcus Stroman and the Cubs topped the Boston Red Sox 10-4 on Saturday.
Bellinger, who homered twice in Friday night’s loss, capped a six-run third with his eighth career slam. Patrick Wisdom added a two-run shot, his 15th, an inning later off reliever Tayler Scott.
Triston Casas hit his 11th homer and Justin Turner doubled twice to stretch his hitting streak to 11 games for the Red Sox, who had won six straight.
James Paxton (5-2) sailed through the first two innings but quickly ran into trouble in the third, which began with a pair of walks wrapped around a hit batter. Nico Hoerner and Seiya Suzuki brought in runs by reaching on fielder’s choice plays and Ian Happ walked to set the table for Bellinger, who knocked his 12th homer of the season into the netting in right center field.
“He’s special,” Stroman said of his teammate. “It’s awesome to see Belli back to that MVP Belli.
“He’s someone who changes an entire lineup. With one swing, he can change a game. Seeing him locked in is incredible.”
The Cubs got two more off Brandon Walter in the seventh to turn the game into a rout.
Paxton, looking for his fourth win in as many starts, didn’t return for the fourth after giving up six earned runs and walking three while striking out four.
“It’s just one game. We’ll show up tomorrow,” Red Sox manager Alex Cora said. “We just didn’t make plays today.”
Stroman (10-6) had been 0-2 in his previous three starts. He scattered three hits and a run over the first six innings while striking out three and walking one.
“Typical Stro,” Cubs manager David Ross said. “Just another day for your No. 1 starter against a really good offensive club.”
Reliever Julian Merryweather surrendered Casas’ two-run home run in the seventh.
Red Sox manager Alex Cora said before the game he was “very confident” playing Kiké Hernández at shortstop despite his 14 errors at the position this season. Hernández then mishandled Hoerner’s grounder early in the third that could’ve started a double play. It was ruled an infield single.
NO HARD FEELINGS
It’s not clear what, if any, plans the Cubs have for Stroman or Bellinger as the trade deadline nears. Stroman, who’ll be a free agent at the end of the season, said he won’t hold a deadline deal against the Cubs and would welcome a return.
“However it plays out, I’m good with it,” he said. “No matter what happens, I would hope they’ll be in the mix during free agency.”
YOSHIDA’S STREAK ENDS
Boston OF Masataka Yoshida went 0 for 4 to end a run of eight straight multi-hit games. It was the longest such streak by a Red Sox lefty since Ted Williams did the same in 1940.
Boston RHP Kutter Crawford (3-4, 4.11) faces LHP Justin Steele (9-2, 2.56) in Sunday afternoon’s series finale.