CHICAGO (AP) — The AL East-leading Baltimore Orioles remained calm after suffering their first losing road trip of the season.
The team finished with one hit — Steve Pearce’s home run in the seventh — in a 2-1 loss to the Chicago Cubs on Sunday to go 4-5 on their road trip.
“We have a good team. This is our only hiccup in our season,” Pearce said. “We’re going to go home and we’re going to take care of business. We’re going to get this road trip out of our system.”
Pearce homered to lead off the seventh and broke up former Orioles prospect Tsuyoshi Wada’s no-hit bid.
The Orioles finished with 11 strikeouts went 1-2 against the Cleveland Indians, 3-0 against the Chicago White Sox and 0-3 against the Cubs. Baltimore has its first three-game losing streak since losing four straight May 27-30.
“It didn’t work out for us,” Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. “The key is, you score four runs in 27 innings you’re not going to win too many games.”
Wada (4-1) got a popout after the homer that landed on Waveland Avenue and departed to a standing ovation from the crowd of 32,774. He struck out a career-high eight and walked one in 6 1-3 innings in his eighth career start. He retired 16 straight after Adam Jones drew a two-out walk in the first.
Arismendy Alcantara homered for the Cubs, who recorded their first series sweep since taking three straight at Boston from June 30 to July 2.
Hector Rondon struck out one in the ninth for his 21st save in 25 opportunities.
Alcantara hit a one-out solo homer, his fourth of the season, to give the Cubs the lead in the fifth. The Cubs extended their advantage to 2-0 in the sixth on Anthony Rizzo’s RBI double.
Wada struck out the side in the fourth and sixth innings. Of his 92 pitches, 59 were for strikes.
Showalter said Wada was good for “the same reason we had interest in him when he was healthy.”
Wada was 5-6 with a 4.03 ERA in 19 Triple-A games in the Orioles system in 2013 after he underwent Tommy John surgery in 2012. He previously pitched nine seasons in Japan. The Cubs signed him to a minor-league deal in December.
“He kept us off-balance,” Pearce said. “He was throwing everything for a strike. He was working quick. He pitched really well today.”
Cubs third baseman Luis Valbuena caught a hard-hit short hopper by J.J. Hardy to lead off the second, helping preserve Wada’s no-hit bid.
Miguel Gonzalez (6-7) allowed two runs and six hits in 6 1-3 innings after he was recalled from Triple-A Norfolk to replace Ubaldo Jimenez (4-9, 4.74 ERA) in the Orioles rotation.
“I was real happy about Miguel today,” Showalter said.
Wada recorded the game’s first hit — and his first major league hit — on a two-out infield single in the third.
“I knew a lot of the players on their team. I feel like I let people down not being able to be a factor on the team,” Wada said through an interpreter. “So I try to be the player that they thought they acquired.”
Orioles: 3B Manny Machado will undergo season-ending, right knee surgery on Wednesday in California. He is expected to rehab in Sarasota, Florida. … To make room for Gonzalez, the Orioles designated INF Cord Phelps for assignment. Phelps went 0 for 3 in three games.
Cubs: RHP Brian Schlitter was reinstated from the 15-day disabled list and optioned to Triple-A Iowa before Sunday’s game. He went on the DL on Aug. 9 with right shoulder inflammation.
The Orioles begin a four-game series against visiting Tampa Bay on Monday. RHP Chris Tillman (10-5, 3.55) will start against Rays RHP Jake Odorizzi (9-10, 3.83).
After an off day on Monday, the Cubs open a three-game series at Cincinnati. LHP Travis Wood (7-11, 4.91) will face Reds RHP Johnny Cueto (15-7, 2.20).
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