Javier Baez and Kyle Schwarber each homered and drove in four runs as the visiting Chicago Cubs beat the Colorado Rockies 16-5 on Friday night to open a three-game series.
Baez and Albert Almora Jr. had four each hits and Schwarber had three for Chicago (9-8), which had a season-high 18 hits. Starter Kyle Hendricks lasted just five innings but picked up his first win of the season. Hendricks (1-1) didn’t walk a batter and struck out six before leaving for a pinch hitter in the sixth inning.
Nolan Arenado homered and had three hits for Colorado in his return from a five-game suspension.
The Cubs (9-8) hit Rockies ace John Gray hard and knocked him out at the start of their seven-run sixth inning that broke open a close game. Gray, who had two hits, allowed seven runs - five earned - on eight hits and struck out just one.
Chicago’s 16 runs were a season high on a cold, rainy Denver night where temperatures started in the mid-40s and dipped into the 30s. Baez, who had four hits, hit his sixth homer of the season to give the Cubs a 2-0 lead in the first.
The Rockies (11-10) took a 3-2 lead in the bottom of the first when Arenado hit the first pitch he saw into the bleachers in right field. It was all Chicago after that.
The Cubs tied it in the third and used a couple of Colorado errors in the fifth to take a 5-3 lead.
They sent 10 men to the plate in the sixth to put the game out of reach. Jason Heyward’s RBI triple chased Gray (1-4) and Chicago roughed up reliever Bryan Shaw for five runs on four hits, with Schwarber delivering a three-run homer to dead center to cap the rally.
Schwarber’s single in the eighth drove in Wilson Contreras.
The Rockies played without outfielder Carlos Gonzalez because of a sore right hamstring.
—Field Level Media