Wood can't keep ball in yard vs. Cardinals

Wood can't keep ball in yard vs. Cardinals

Wood can't keep ball in yard vs. Cardinals
CHICAGO -- Travis Wood made the kind of history no one wants to Friday afternoon at Wrigley Field.

According to the Elias Sports Bureau, the Cubs left-hander became the first starter in Major League Baseball history to surrender a home run in each of the first five innings, as the Cubs fell to the Cardinals, 9-6.

"I missed some pitches and they didn't miss the pitches that I missed," Wood said. "They ended up hitting them out of the park."

According to Elias, it also was the first time the Cubs have allowed a home run in each of the first five innings in club history. It also was the first time a Major League team homered in the first five innings of a game since the Astros did so against Colorado on Oct. 2, 2004.

The five homers Wood gave up also put him in the company of five other Cubs for the most home runs surrendered in a single game in franchise history. Before Friday, the most recent occurrence was when Carlos Zambrano gave up five in his last start with the club on Aug. 12, 2011.

"They came in swinging. It's a tough lineup to face," catcher Geovany Soto said. "He was trying to keep the ball down, but it's one of those days that they were slugging out there."

Wood (4-6, 4.98 ERA) allowed a two-run homer to Yadier Molina in the second inning and solo shots to Matt Holliday (first inning), Lance Berkman (third), Matt Carpenter (fourth) and Allen Craig (fifth).

Daniel Descalso added a run-scoring triple in the fourth and scored on a sacrifice fly off the bat of St. Louis starter Lance Lynn.

"He pitched me tough. I think we just took advantage of some mistakes," Craig said. "Pitchers are going to make mistakes, and when we're swinging the bats good, we're going to capitalize on those mistakes. I thought he had good stuff."

Wood allowed eight runs on seven hits in five innings, marking the third consecutive outing in which he's given up at least six earned runs. He is 0-3 with a 12.69 ERA in that span.

"I went on a roll and now I'm on the other side of it," said Wood, who was 4-0 with a 1.01 ERA in his previous four starts. "The pitches are still there, the shapes are good. Just have to keep working."

Despite Wood's struggles, the Cubs' offense responded quickly to Holliday's first-inning homer, hitting for the cycle and scoring three runs off Lynn (13-4, 3.42 ERA) in the bottom half of the inning. David DeJesus hit a leadoff triple and scored on a single by Starlin Castro. Anthony Rizzo followed with his sixth homer of the year, a two-run shot, into the right-field bleachers.

Soto's double completed the cycle, marking the first time the Cubs hit for a first-inning cycle since July 25, 2009.

Chicago scored three more runs in the third, beginning with another leadoff triple, this time by Castro. Rizzo drove in the shortstop before Alfonso Soriano followed with an RBI double and scored on a single by Soto.

Lynn allowed six runs in five innings, after holding the Cubs to two combined runs in his first two starts against them this season.

"It just seemed like they knew what I was trying to do," Lynn said. "They weren't going to get beat on that today. The time before, I was able to make pitches and get out of innings with runners on. Today, when they got the runner on, they scored."

Lynn opened the fourth inning with a leadoff walk to Luis Valbuena, who was caught stealing, but the right-hander and five relievers combined to allow only three Cubs baserunners the rest of the way.

Castro went 3-for-4 to record his 88th multihit game since 2011, tied with Reds second baseman Brandon Phillips for the most in that time. Rizzo went 2-for-4 and leads all National League rookies in batting average (.330), homers (six) and RBIs (15) since his June 26 debut.

"It's a good feeling to be in that kind of mindset, have that feeling at the plate, and I just want to stick with where I'm at and keep going," Rizzo said.

The loss, only the Cubs' third in their last 13 home games, came in front of 40,778 on Ron Santo Day, which honored the late third baseman who was inducted into the Hall of Fame on Sunday.

Cash Kruth is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @cashkruth. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.