Javier Assad Pitches 6 Innings As Cubs Blank Brewers 5-0

Chicago Cubs starting pitcher Javier Assad throws against the Milwaukee Brewers during the first inning of a baseball game in Chicago, Sunday, May 5, 2024. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)
Chicago Cubs starting pitcher Javier Assad throws against the Milwaukee Brewers during the first inning of a baseball game in Chicago, Sunday, May 5, 2024. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)
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CHICAGO (AP) — Javier Assad pitched six sparkling innings, and the Chicago Cubs beat Freddy Peralta and the Milwaukee Brewers 5-0 on Sunday in the rubber game of their weekend set.

Assad (3-0) allowed four hits, struck out four and walked three, lowering his ERA to 1.66. The right-hander has permitted two or fewer runs in each of his seven starts this season.

“He's just got weapons that just don't let the hitter get comfortable ever,” Cubs manager Craig Counsell said.

Chicago posted two straight wins against Milwaukee after losing 3-1 on Friday. The starting pitchers for the Cubs combined for 18 1/3 scoreless innings in the series, allowing a total of nine hits.

“We have a great group of pitchers in the rotation. In the bullpen as well,” Assad said through a translator. “So it's really great just to go out there and see them pitch and feed off each other.”

Peralta (3-1) matched his career high with six walks in five innings. He allowed three hits and struck out five on a sunny, cool day at Wrigley Field.

It was the right-hander's first start since he was suspended five games for his role in a brawl with the Rays on Tuesday. He is appealing the punishment by Major League Baseball.

The Cubs (21-14) grabbed control with three runs in Peralta's final inning. Nico Hoerner hit a two-run double, advanced on a groundout and scored on a two-out wild pitch.

Dansby Swanson added a leadoff homer in the sixth against Thyago Vieira, and Christopher Morel singled home Mike Tauchman in the seventh. Morel went 1 for 1 with three walks.

Milwaukee (20-13) put runners on first and second in the fourth and fifth, and Assad escaped each time. Oliver Dunn bounced to first for the final out of the fourth, and Tyler Black struck out looking in the fifth.

Assad also got some help from Swanson in the first when the Gold Glove shortstop made a sliding play on Willy Adames' grounder for the final out, stranding a runner on third.

“Today was just kind of like a be aggressive, go get it kind of mentality,” said Swanson, who entered in a 3-for-25 slump at the plate. “And obviously that carries over offensively and defensively.”

The Brewers went 0 for 7 with runners in scoring position and left eight runners on base.

“We ran into three guys that pitched very, very well,” Milwaukee manager Pat Murphy said, looking back on the series. “And offensively we didn't hit with runners in scoring position. But, like I said, a great experience for our guys.”

After Assad departed, Yency Almonte pitched two innings and Daniel Palencia finished the five-hitter.


Brewers: Murphy offered a loose timetable for OF Joey Wiemer (left knee discomfort) of two to three weeks. Wiemer was placed on the 10-day injured list Saturday. “Just thankful he doesn’t need surgery,” Murphy said. ... OF Christian Yelich (back) is running and swinging the bat. “It seemed to be progressing the last couple days,” Murphy said. Yelich was placed on the 10-day IL on April 16.

Cubs: OF Seiya Suzuki (right oblique strain) ran the bases and took batting practice before the game. OF Cody Bellinger (right rib fracture) also ran the bases and was scheduled for some swings. ... RHP Kyle Hendricks (low back strain) was expected to throw a bullpen.


Brewers: RHP Bryse Wilson (2-1, 3.00 ERA) faces Royals LHP Cole Ragans (2-2, 3.44) on Monday night in the opener of a three-game set at Kansas City.

Cubs: LHP Justin Steele (0-0, 1.93 ERA) is slated to return for the opener of a three-game series against San Diego on Monday night. Steele has been sidelined with a left hamstring strain. RHP Yu Darvish (1-1, 3.45) starts for the visiting Padres.


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