Justin Steele’s two-hitter sends Angels to fifth straight loss

The Cubs' Tomás Nido, left, celebrates with Justin Steele after defeating the Angels on Friday.
(Melissa Tamez / Associated Press)
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Justin Steele pitched a two-hitter for his first complete game, Seiya Suzuki homered and the Chicago Cubs beat the Angels 5-1 on Friday.

Steele (1-3) dazzled in his first victory in 13 starts this season. The left-hander threw 95 pitches, striking out seven and walking two, while lowering his ERA from 3.20 to 2.95.

The crowd of 36,948 cheered when he came out for the ninth inning and roared when Brandon Drury grounded out to end the game. Steele hugged catcher Tomás Nido.


“That was special,” Steele said. “Wrigley’s a special place. Fans are aware at all times of what’s going on. They knew it was a special moment for me, to myself. The field, the crowd, and energy — everything behind me — it’s truly special. The Wrigley faithful, it’s really hard to put into words how special they are.”

The Cubs won their second straight after losing eight of 10. The Angels dropped their fifth in a row since a season-high six-game win streak.

After winning six consecutive games, the Angels have lost four in a row and were shut out for the second straight time in a 5-0 loss to the Oakland Athletics.

July 4, 2024

Steele won 16 games last season and made his first All-Star team. He missed six weeks this year after straining his left hamstring in the opener at Texas and has been on a roll, with a 1.67 ERA in his last eight starts.

This time he got the run support he needed.

Suzuki hit a two-run drive in the first inning against Griffin Canning (3-9), driving a 2-and-2 pitch to the basket for his 12th home run and fourth in nine games. Ian Happ added RBI singles in the third and fifth after driving in a career-high six runs in Thursday’s romp over Philadelphia. Nido doubled and scored in the sixth, and third baseman Miles Mastrobuoni made some slick plays, including one on the game’s first pitch when he lunged to his right to snag Taylor Ward’s line drive.

“It was Cubbie baseball, you know?” Mastrobuoni said. “This locker room’s very talented. When we put the things together, I’ll take this team up against anybody.”

Shut out the previous two games at Oakland, the Angels scored and got their only hits in the fifth. Keston Hiura singled and came home from second on Ward’s base hit.


Canning lasted 4⅓ innings, giving up four runs and six hits.

Rengifo placed on IL

The Angels placed third baseman Luis Rengifo (right wrist inflammation) on the 10-day injured list. Rengifo exited Wednesday’s game at Oakland after fouling a ball off his lower right arm near the wrist. He had an MRI exam Friday. ... Third baseman Anthony Rendon (left hamstring strain) was to face live pitching against minor leaguers Friday and Saturday at Angel Stadium, manager Ron Washington said. He is expected to get 15 to 20 at-bats each day.

Up next

Cubs right-hander Kyle Hendricks (1-6, 7.48 ERA) and Angels left-hander Tyler Anderson (7-8, 3.03) both look to bounce back after getting hit hard in losses Sunday. Hendricks gave up seven runs in 3-2/3 innings at Milwaukee. Anderson lasted 4-2/3 innings against Detroit and gave up six runs.