8/28 Wood, Cubs comes up short

Travis Wood did everything he could to beat the Brewers. He just didn’t get much help. He hit his third career home run but also served up a three-run shot to rookie Jeff Bianchi as the Brewers beat the Cubs, 4-1, on Tuesday night. The announced crowd was 30,017, the smallest of the season at Wrigley Field.

It was Wood’s eighth straight loss, which is a career-high, and the Cubs fell to a season-low 30-games under .500 (49-79). He’s now 0-8 with a 6.66 ERA in his last nine starts. Wood (4-11) gave up three runs, on Bianchi’s homer, over seven innings. Asked to sum up his season so far, the lefty shrugged.

“With tonight, I’m 4-11, so not very good,” he said.

On Monday night, Ryan Braun, Aramis Ramirez and Corey Hart each homered for Milwaukee. That’s to be expected. On Tuesday, the Brewers got their power from an unlikely source. With one out in the Milwaukee second, Hart doubled, but was caught in a rundown by Wood. Martin Maldonado was safe on a fielder’s choice on the play, and Carlos Gomez then singled. Both scored on Bianchi’s first Major League home run off a 3-0 pitch.

“It was 3-0 [in the count] and I should’ve known better,” Wood said. “The pitcher was on deck. I didn’t, and I made the pitch I did, and he hit it out.”

Wood did that as well when he led off the Cubs’ third with his third career home run, although he hit an 0-2 pitch from Yovani Gallardo into the left-field bleachers. The lefty is the second Cubs pitcher to connect this year, as Paul Maholm also did so for the Cubs on June 23 against the D-backs. It was Wood’s first blast since May 9, 2011.

“He’s been swinging pretty good,” Gallardo said of Wood. “I saw that my last start. I just tried to overthrow it and it came back over the plate, and he hit it out.”

Wood didn’t celebrate his blast.

“It’s a moot point when you still lose the ballgame,” he said.

– Carrie Muskat

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