Arrieta throws 8 scoreless innings as Cubs beat Rockies 6-2
CHICAGO (AP) Even Jake Arrieta has to admit that his scoreless streak at Wrigley Field is impressive.
The right-hander threw eight more shutout innings and the Chicago Cubs hit three home runs to beat the Colorado Rockies 6-2 on Saturday.
Arrieta (3-0), the reigning NL Cy Young winner, struck out eight and allowed five hits in his home debut. He has not allowed a run in his last 48 2/3 innings - dating to last July - at home.
''I didn't know that. That is pretty good,'' Arrieta said. ''But I don't put too much time and effort into that. I just try and execute each time I go out. The results are hard to control. Just try and continue to go on the path I'm (on) right now, force contact and be aggressive in the zone, and good things will happen.''
Arrieta had a chance for a complete game, but manager Joe Maddon lifted him after the Cubs scored six runs. Arrieta threw 100 pitches.
''It's early, it's April,'' Arrieta said. ''The most important innings are going to come later in the year.''
Dexter Fowler hit a three-run homer in the seventh, and Anthony Rizzo and Jorge Soler hit back-to-back shots in the fourth.
The Cubs have won nine of 11 for their best start since they went 10-1 in 1969.
The Rockies saw their three-game winning streak end. Carlos Gonzalez hit a two-run home run, his fourth, off Travis Wood in the ninth.
Christian Bergman (0-2) matched a career high of seven strikeouts and allowed two runs in five innings in his first start of the season.
Rizzo and Soler homered on the first two pitches of the fourth. Rizzo hit his third homer, and Soler smacked his second to left field. Fowler homered on a 2-1 pitch from David Hale in the seventh.
''They were all properly struck,'' Maddon said. ''That was a tough home run day with the wind. Even their guy, Gonzalez, it was properly struck too.''
Gonzalez singled in the fourth to extend his hitting streak to 11 games this season and 21 games since 2015.
Arrieta struck out swinging the first three batters and retired 10 straight from the fourth to the seventh inning. He has made a club-record 23 consecutive quality starts.
''You get minimal fly balls, hopefully minimal groundballs,'' Fowler said. ''He punches guys out like it's his job, and it is.''
The Rockies had their best chance to score in the third. Dustin Garneau led off with a double but was stranded at third after Cristhian Adames grounded out and rookie Trevor Story struck out.
''You want to score right there,'' Rockies manager Walt Weiss said. ''You know you're gonna have to grind for every one you get. The good ones like that (Arrieta) when they get some traffic or get guys in scoring position, they take it up a notch. That's what he did in that situation.''
Story leads the majors with seven homers but continued to struggle against Chicago. He went 0 for 5 with two strikeouts Friday and 1 for 4 with a double and three strikeouts Saturday.
The Rockies won the series opener 6-1 to snap the Cubs' five-game winning streak.
''We like our chances to stop skids pretty early,'' Arrieta said.
Before Rizzo's home run, right fielder Gonzalez set up as if he was going to catch the ball before it landed in the right-field stands.
''I'm playing around trying to fool people,'' Gonzalez said. ''Even when it's gone I try and give a hard time for the hitter. A couple guys around the league always get mad at me because I act like I'm gonna catch the ball and they get a little heart attack before it's even a home run. I like to have fun with the game.''
Rockies: C Nick Hundley went on the seven-day concussion disabled list, retroactive to Thursday, and RHP Hale was recalled from Triple-A Albuquerque on Saturday. Hundley has been experiencing concussion symptoms after taking a foul tip off his mask Wednesday.
Cubs: 2B Javier Baez (thumb) made his first start after coming off the disabled list Friday. Baez could start two or three times a week, Maddon said.
Rockies RHP Tyler Chatwood (1-1, 4.38 ERA) will start the series finale against Cubs LHP Jon Lester (1-0, 2.77). Lester is 1-1 with a 1.93 ERA in his career against Colorado. Chatwood is 1-0 with a 1.50 ERA versus Chicago.