Chicago Cubs

Albert Almora, Steven Souza Help Cubs Outslug Mariners

Almora smacked a home run, and Souza drove in two runs

Albert Almora Jr. hit his first home run of the spring, and Javier Báez picked up a base hit and a walk as the Chicago Cubs beat the Seattle Mariners in a slugfest in Peoria Monday afternoon.

Almora drove in a total of four runs, and Steven Souza Jr. went 2-for-3 with two RBI’s and two runs scored as the Cubs registered a 16-12 win over the Mariners.

Adbert Alzolay, who is battling for the fifth spot in the rotation, had a rough outing Monday as he gave up two runs in the first inning. Rowan Wick also struggled, giving up five earned runs in his first spring appearance.

The Cubs got off to a hot start in the first inning, scoring five runs and racing out to an early lead. Souza singled to center field to score Kris Bryant, then Almora followed it up with an RBI single to drive in Báez to make the game 2-0.

Catcher Josh Phegley then unloaded on a three-run home run over the center field barrier, marking the third consecutive day that the Cubs’ starting catcher has gone deep. That home run gave the Cubs a 5-0 lead before Seattle even stepped up to the plate.

After the Mariners scored a pair of runs in the bottom of the frame, the Cubs got right back to work, scoring three more runs in the second inning. After a throwing error plated the Cubs’ sixth run, Souza smacked an RBI double, scoring Anthony Rizzo and making it 7-2. Almora then singled to drive in Souza and the Cubs led 8-2 after two innings.

Almora struck again in the fourth inning, hitting a two-run home run. P.J. Higgins helped continue the onslaught with a home run of his own in the seventh, and after a Seattle comeback fell short in the ninth, the Cubs picked up their second victory of the Cactus League schedule.

The Cubs will be back home in Mesa Tuesday when they take on the Colorado Rockies.

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