CHICAGO (AP) – Mark Reynolds and Charlie Blackmon homered, rookie Jeff Hoffman pitched neatly into the seventh inning and the Colorado Rockies won their seventh straight game, beating the Chicago Cubs 9-1 Saturday.
The Rockies have their longest winning streak since 2011. The Cubs lost their fourth in a row, dropping the World Series champions to 30-31.
Reynolds had four hits, including his 17th homer, and Nolan Arenado had a three-run double during a five-run ninth inning. The Rockies, who have the best record in the NL, improved to 24-10 on the road.
One of four rookies in the Rockies’ rotation, the 24-year-old Hoffman (4-0) allowed one run and struck out eight in 6 1/3 innings. Four Colorado relievers kept Chicago scoreless the rest of the way.
Cubs starter Eddie Butler (3-2) pitched five innings and gave up three runs on six hits in his first outing against his former team.
Willson Contreras drove in the only run for Chicago, now sliding after a five-game winning streak.
Hoffman dominated in his fourth start and third straight solid outing.
Anthony Rizzo, the third Chicago batter in the first, blooped a single to left, then the right-hander didn’t permit another hit until Jason Heyward’s line single with one out in the seventh. Albert Almora and Contreras then followed with singles for the Cubs’ only run.
Hoffman was one of four players the Rockies acquired from Toronto in a July 2015 trade that sent All-Star shortstop Troy Tulowitzki to the Blue Jays.
The Rockies took a 2-0 lead in the first as DJ LeMahieu and Reynolds each doubled home a run.
Reynolds homered over the left field stands onto Waveland Avenue, making it 3-0 in the fourth. Blackmon hit his 15th homer over the right field bleachers in the seventh.
Addison Russell returned to Cubs lineup, two days after Major League Baseball began an investigation of the All-Star shortstop in the wake of domestic violence allegations in a deleted social media post. The Cubs told Russell not to come to the ballpark Thursday for a game against the Rockies, but he rejoined the team on Friday and didn’t play. Russell, who entered the game hitting .209, went 0 for 2 before being lifted for a pinch hitter in the seventh.
The Cubs recalled RHP Felix Pena from Triple-A Iowa and optioned righty Seth Frankoff to the farm club. Frankoff made his major league debut on Friday – and took the loss against the Rockies – after being recalled to fill a roster spot for righty Kyle Hendricks, who’s on the DL (right had tendinitis).
Rockies: RHP Chad Bettis has rejoined the team following treatment for testicular cancer. Manager Bud Black said Bettis could resume throwing in the next week and return after the All-Star break.
Rockies rookie RHP Antonio Senzatela (8-2, 3.56) will make his first career start at Wrigley Field and try to become the NL’s first nine-game winner on Sunday afternoon in the finale of the four-game series. The Cubs will counter with RHP Jake Arrieta (6-4, 4.46).