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Neighbors Growing Together | Oct 22, 2017

Cubs beat Reds 7-5

May 18, 2017

CHICAGO (Reuters) – Kyle Hendricks may not be completely back to the stingy ERA and dominance he exhibited in 2016, but he is getting close.

The Chicago Cubs right-hander overcame early shakiness with an increasingly strong outing on Wednesday, leading the Cubs to a 7-5 victory over the Cincinnati Reds.

Hendricks (3-2) allowed two runs on six hits, all over the first three innings. He permitted just one baserunner and no hits over his final three innings.

“That game was one of my better ones because I got stronger in those later innings,” he said. “My last three innings felt much better, much more under control. Getting stronger as the game goes is always a good sign.”

Hendricks had a National League-low 2.13 ERA in 2016. He lowered his 2017 ERA to 3.35 on Wednesday.

“He looked really, really good,” said Cubs manager Joe Maddon. “Velocity was up, you saw the bad takes, the bad swings, contact wasn’t as hard. I talked to him afterwards and he was really excited. He knew that was right tonight, and that’s a great game to build off of.”

The Cubs (20-19) won their second straight over the Reds, and they will go for a series sweep in the finale on Thursday. Cincinnati (19-20) took its season-high fifth loss in a row.

Chicago also claimed two of three in an April series at Cincinnati.

Ben Zobrist went 2-for-3 with a double and a walk, while Anthony Rizzo and Kyle Schwarber each had two RBIs.

Hendricks walked two and struck out four in a 107-pitch outing on another hot night with the wind blowing out.

Reds right-hander Scott Feldman (2-4) worked just 2 2/3 innings, giving up seven runs (five earned) on five hits. He walked three and struck out four while throwing 88 pitches.

The Reds scored a seventh-inning run off reliever Mike Montgomery, who saw an 18-inning scoreless streak snapped as Adam Duvall singled to left with two outs to drive in Zack Cozart.

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