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Cubs lose third straight as former Cub powers Phillies

Nick Castellanos was the star of the show but it was a night to remember for Jared Young.

Nick Castellanos giving thanks after his 3 run HR gave the Phillies a 5-0 lead (Chris LaGrone/The Bigs Media)

Words by Eugene McIntosh


The Cubs were winners in eleven of their last fifteen but losers of two straight coming into last night's game. On the flip side, the Philadelphia Phillies won nine of their last twelve and their starting rotation hung a 2.60 ERA in the month of June. The Cubs looked like a team still in recovery mode from a weekend trip to London as they fell 8-5 to the Phillies in front of 32,279 at Wrigley.

Through his first nine starts this season, Cubs starter Drew Smyly owned a 4-1 record with a 2.50 ERA. It was a rough outing to say the least for the veteran lefty as he picked up his fifth loss of the season and is 3-4 over his last seven starts. He lasted 3.2 innings allowing nine hits and seven runs with one walk and two strikeouts on 86 pitches. This was the first time in his last five starts that he didn't record at least four punches.

Smyly has been very consistent for a rotation that boasts a 3.96 combined ERA and 35 quality starts...both third best in the National League. He was visibly frustrated with his outing and looked like he might not make it out of the second frame.

"I don't know...maybe it just evens out over the course of the season," he said. "Sometimes it's just...things don't go your way. They had a couple of hard hit balls but it also just felt like they had a lot of soft contact that was falling in front and once the guys got on base I just didn't do a good job of stranding them. They were able to get the big hit."

The Phillies two big hits in the top of the second landed them an early five spot. Edmundo Sosa got what he was looking for and waited on Smyly's back door knuckle-curve taking it into the left field bleachers giving Philly a 2-0 lead. With catcher Cristian Pache and shortstop Trea Turner on, former Cub and should be All-Star Nick Castellanos' three run job put the Phillies up 5.

Wrigley Field is a ballpark that's tailor-made for a savvy hitter like Castellanos who uses the entire field with the best of them. He led the Philly attack going 2-5 scoring two runs and driving in four.

"It's just a good place to play baseball. The energy is always good here. It's just a happy place and obviously when the wind isn't howling in it's a good place to hit," Castellanos said before his teammates gave him a postgame Dasani shower.

Hayden Wesneski did some Smyly damage control striking out four in the second longest relief outing of his career. He went 4.1 innings and only allowed two hits and one run. "I thought Hayden threw the ball really well to keep us in a chance, throwing up zeros getting us back in the dugout pretty fast trying to get some momentum offensively. We just couldn't get that really big blow like they were able to tonight," said Cubs manager David Ross.

Jared Young was called up from Triple A Iowa Tuesday and made his presence felt immediately. In his first plate appearance for the Cubs in 2023, the 465th pick of the 2017 MLB draft turned on an Aaron Nola 0-2 sinker and 425 feet later had his first career home run.

Young was called up mid September of 2022 and made hjis MLB debut against the Colorado Rockies. He was outrighted to Iowa on October 11 and began this season raking in Iowa with a slash line of .326/.426/.605.

"It's one of those at bats where your hearts racing a lil bit. First time back at Wrigley kinda got me going and it's just staying the fight. I got down 0-2 and got a pitch I could get to and it was just a good swing. I was really fired up. I know it was a 5-0 ballgame at the time and we just gotta get runs and gotta get baserunners. A good swing like that can help sometimes but I was just really pumped up. I was excited, my family was here and it was just a really good moment for me," Young said

"JY" said he got the home run ball back from the fan who caught it in exchange for a signed bat and a picture. He plans on giving the ball to his brother and one-month old niece who were in town from Canada.

Cubs third base coach Willie Harris showing Jared Young some love after his first career HR (Chris LaGrone/The Bigs Media)

*Nick Madrigal was 3-4 and extended his hitting streak to 7 games

*Patrick Wisdom was cleared to begin a rehab assignment with Triple A Iowa today (sprained right wrist)


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