Jon Lester continued his strong start to the season with six solid innings, while Jason Heyward homered and had four RBIs as the visiting Chicago Cubs returned to action with a 7-1 win over the Cleveland Indians on Tuesday night.
After their weekend series in St. Louis was postponed due to the Cardinals’ continued COVID-19 issues, the Cubs didn’t show much rust during their first game in five days. Lester (2-0, 1.06 ERA) set the tempo, allowing one run on three hits and two walks to help Chicago win for the 11th time in 14 games on this condensed season.
Heyward had three hits while Javier Baez and Ian Happ each recorded two as the Cubs used a five-run sixth inning to take the first of two games at Cleveland.
The Indians, who entered winners in two straight and five of six, got a sixth-inning sacrifice fly from Franmil Reyes for their only run of the night. With two of Cleveland’s four hits in the game, Reyes is 9 for 18 in the last five contests.
Chicago got on the board in the top of the second inning. Following a one-out single by Willson Contreras and walk to Happ, Heyward roped a single to center to make it 1-0. Contreras put Chicago up 2-0 with a sacrifice fly in the breakout sixth. Happ made it 3-0, when he followed with an RBI single and Heyward put them in control with his three-run drive that just cleared the right-field wall.
Despite the result, Cleveland got a solid emergency start from Adam Plutko (1-1, 2.45 ERA), stepping in after scheduled Tuesday starter Mike Clevinger was placed in quarantine for breaking team protocol while in Chicago to face the White Sox over the weekend. Plutko allowed just that one run and four hits with a walk over four innings.
Manager Terry Francona returned to the Indians dugout for the first time since Aug. 1, after missing time due to a reported gastrointestinal issue.
--Field Level Media
Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.