Des Moines, IA - Vance Albitz had a go-ahead single in the seventh inning to help erase a two-run deficit for the Salt Lake Bees (56-75), and the bullpen continued their dominance in a 4-2 win over the Iowa Cubs (67-65) on Tuesday afternoon at Principal Park. The Bees completed their first sweep of the season -- and first since sweeping the Cubs from July 30 to August 2 last year. They have won the last 11 meetings between the two teams. The Cubs finished 1-7 on the home stand and have dropped 12 of their last 13 contests at home.
RH Dallas Beeler and LH Randy Wolf dueled to a scoreless tie through three innings before the Cubs broke the scoring seal in the fourth inning. Manny Ramirez capped an impressive nine-pitch at-bat with a long two-run home run over the suites in left field for his third long ball in an Iowa uniform. Ramirez's only other career homer off Wolf came on June 8, 2001 when Ramirez was a member of the Boston Red Sox.
The Bees broke through against Beeler in the sixth inning without the benefit of a hit. His only walk of the day came around to score the lone run of the frame. Shawn O'Mally drew a one-out free pass, advanced to second on a balk, moved to third on a wild pitch, and came around to score on a sacrifice fly by J.B. Shuck. At 91 pitches, Beeler went back to the mound for the seventh inning. He gave up back-to-back singles to start that put runners at first and third. John Buck followed with a groundout to third base that scored the tying run and moved the go-ahead run to second base. After a flyout, Albitz finished off a six-pitch at-bat with a single through the left side to give the Salt Lake a 3-2 lead. Albitz tried to advance to second on the throw, but was thrown out to end the inning.
C.J. Cron provided Salt Lake with an insurance run in the ninth inning when he blasted the first pitch of the inning from RH Blake Parker over the Cub Club in left field for his seventh homer in 39 games with the Bees this season. After getting the final out of the eight inning, RH Cam Bedrosian stayed on for the ninth inning. The Cubs got two of the first four hitters to reach, but Josh Vitters lined out to right field on the ninth pitch of the at-bat to end the game. Bedrosian nailed down his second save of the series and his third in as many opportunities with Salt Lake this season.
Wolf didn't figure in the decision for the Bees. He went 5.2 innings and allowed two runs on five hits, walked two and struck out five in his fifth start with Salt Lake this season. RH David Carpenter, LH Dustin Richardson, and Bedrosian combined to give up two hits, one walk, and no runs over the final 3.1 innings. The Bees bullpen allowed just two earned runs in 13.2 innings (1.36 ERA) in the four-game series.
Beeler suffered his sixth loss of the year despite posting his 13th quality start. He scattered five hits, allowed three runs, and struck out one in his 112-pitch outing. Beeler has worked at least six innings in 15 straight starts.
Junior Lake had over half of the Cubs seven hits with four singles in five at-bats. That's the most hits he's collected in a game since he matched that total on August 2 last season with Chicago.
Kris Bryant returned to the Iowa lineup after missing the last two games and went 1-for-3 with a double and walk.
The Cubs went 0-for-5 with runners in scoring position and batted .157 (11-for-70) in those situations over the home stand.
The Cubs begin an eight-game road trip Wednesday night against the Reno Aces. LH Eric Jokisch (9-9, 3.52) takes the ball in the series opener against RH Brad Hagaens (0-1, 3.60) with the first pitch scheduled for 9:05. The game will be broadcast live on AM 940 and 104.5 FM. It will also be streamed live at iowacubs.com, with the On-Deck Circle Pre-Game Show starting at 8:45 PM. The Cubs return to Principal Park on Friday, August 29 to close out the regular season in a four-game series against O