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Cubs break losing streak

I wrote last week about the Chicago Cubs moving to 39-30 thanks to some impressive tight victories over the Los Angeles Dodgers in games that were started by Clayton Kershaw and Zack Greinke. But after a 1-0 victory last Tuesday, the Cubs went into a bit of a tailspin, losing five games in a row.

The losing streak was thanks in large part to an offensive malaise that saw Chicago score just six runs during the five-game slide, including a brutal three-game sweep against the St. Louis Cardinals. When you include that 1-0 victory over the Dodgers, that’s just seven runs in six games.

The Cubs finally broke that losing streak against the New York Mets on Tuesday night, but the offense struggled again in a 1-0 victory. Chicago managed just four hits and now have scored just eight runs in the last seven games.

Luckily for the Cubs, Kyle Hendricks and the bullpen were brilliant, limiting the Mets to just three hits. Hendricks pitched six innings of shutout ball, while the bullpen delivered three hitless innings.

Richard Mackson/USA TODAY Sports

Richard Mackson/USA TODAY Sports

While Chicago’s offense is still in a funk, there’s plenty of reason to think they’ll get out of it at some point, especially with the impending return of Jorge Soler. They’ve been especially awful with runners in scoring position lately, and that’ll turn around. And even with this funk, the Cubs aren’t in bad shape at all. At 40-35, they’re just a half-game behind the San Francisco Giants for the second wild-card spot.

Chicago is positioned well to make a playoff push, and it’ll be interesting to see if Theo and Co. will make any moves before the deadline. The Cubs’ front office is sure to be careful about dealing away top prospects for a very outside shot at winning the World Series this year, but perhaps there will be a smaller deal or two that could help.

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