Cody Bellinger homered twice and Brady Singer was unable to escape the fourth inning in a 6-4 Cubs win to tie the series on Saturday afternoon. Bobby Witt Jr. kept up his torrid hitting with a three-hit afternoon, but the Royals struck out 12 times and left eight runners on base in the loss.
Singer retired Mike Tauchman on a grounder to begin the first, but Nico Hoerner’s grounder was misplayed by Witt for an error. Cody Bellinger made it hurt with his first home run of the day, a two-run shot, to make it 2-0 Cubs. The Royals got a run back in the second when Salvador Perez singled and Freddy Fermin doubled. Matt Duffy grounded out to score Salvy to make it 2-1.
But Brady’s struggles continued in the second with a leadoff triple to Jeimer Candelario, who would score on a sac fly. An inning later Bellinger added his second home run of the day, a solo shot in the third to make it 4-1.
The Cubs loaded the bases in the fourth, setting up an RBI single by Ian Happ. Singer was able to keep Bellinger in the ballpark this time, but Cody’s sacrifice fly made it 6-1 Cubs. After a Dansby Swanson walk, Singer was pulled, ending his day after 91 pitches with just 3 2⁄3 innings of work, six runs (four earned) on nine hits with three strikeouts and two walks.
Bobby Witt Jr. continued to be a one-man wrecking crew for the Royals on offense. He created a run in the sixth with a leadoff single, stolen base, then scoring after two productive out ground balls. He drove in a run with an RBI single in the seventh off reliever Julian Merryweather. The Royals inched closer in the eighth when pinch-hitter Kyle Isbel doubled home Salvador Perez to make it 6-4.
Tucker Davidson, Taylor Hearn, John McMillon, and Jackson Kowar looked impressive in their relief outings, combining to retire all 13 hitters they faced with 5 strikeouts.
The Royals did have the tying run up in the ninth to add some drama. MJ Melendez singled with one out, bringing up Witt. But Adbert Alzolay struck him out on three pitches, and Michael Massey bounced out to end the game.
The Royals fall to 40-85, but still have a chance to take the series tomorrow afternoon when Jordan Lyles faces Kyle Hendricks at 1:20 CT.