The Chicago Cubs rebounded Saturday with three runs in the first two innings and an efficient three innings from spot starter Colin Rea.
But their mid-inning malaise caught up to them in extra innings as the Milwaukee Brewers scored twice in the top of the 10th inning to seize a 6-5 victory at Wrigley Field.
This marked the first time this season the Cubs (13-5) have lost consecutive games. They stranded nine runners and were 1-for-9 with runners in scoring position.
After pitching a perfect ninth, Jeremy Jeffress was peppered for three hits in the 10th. With Christian Yelich starting the inning at second base, Avisail Garcia poked a tie-breaking double down the right field line.
With two outs, Eric Sogard and Jose Urias hit consecutive singles for an insurance run.
Brewers starter Adrian Houser retired 11 of the final 12 batters he faced, including the final eight, and left-hander Brent Suter struck out five in 2⅔ scoreless innings.
The Cubs put two runners on base with two outs in the seventh for the first time since the second, but Willson Contreras popped to second.
But after Suter departed, Steven Souza Jr. hit a drive down the left field line off Cory Knebel that landed in the basket for a game-tying homer.
Rea, making his first start for the Cubs, needed only 35 pitches to get through the first three innings but was pulled after allowing three consecutive hits with one out in the fourth.
Ryan Tepera took over for Rea, but Urias’ grounder scooted past diving third baseman Kris Bryant and eluded the glove of shortstop Javier Baez into shallow left field, which enabled Justin Smoak to score and cap a three-run fourth.
Orlando Arcia’s hard grounder went under the glove of second baseman Jason Kipnis for an error that allowed Ryan Braun to score the go-ahead run in the sixth.
Anthony Rizzo led the offense with a home run and RBI double in the first two innings.
The Cubs scored in the bottom of the 10th as Albert Almora Jr. broke from third and scored after Ian Happ grounded to third. But left-hander Alex Claudio struck out David Bote to end the game.
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