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Reds 4, Cubs 2: It was all going so well, and then...

... in just a few minutes, the Cubs lost this game.

David Kohl-USA TODAY Sports

Jose Quintana was cruising along, as he had over his last few starts. The Cubs fashioned a 2-0 lead in the first inning.

Then the fifth inning happened. I don’t know if it was the rain making the ball hard to handle for Q, or if he just lost it, but over the course of only a few minutes the following sequence happened: home run, single, out, single, two wild pitches and another single. That, all of a sudden, made it 3-2 Reds.

Just a few minutes after that, heavy rain hit Cincinnati and delayed the game nearly two hours. The Cubs couldn’t score again and lost 4-2 to the Reds, losing a series for the first time since that awful season-opening road trip.

That first inning was good, though. Kris Bryant walked with one out and one out later, Javier Baez doubled him to third. Then Willson Contreras hit a baseball that he couldn’t have thrown out there more accurately [VIDEO].

Contreras’ hit became a two-run double and it looked like the Cubs might have Luis Castillo on the ropes.

But Castillo settled down. He was lifted, as was Quintana, after the rain delay. But those doubles and the walk were the only baserunners he allowed. The Cubs got a pair of two-out singles from Daniel Descalso and Baez off Michael Lorenzen following the delay, but those were the only runners they could muster off the Reds bullpen.

Tyler Chatwood threw two innings in relief. He wasn’t quite as good as he had been in the 15-inning game Saturday. This time, he was touched up for five hits and two walks, leading to one additional Reds run, which could have been more except for a timely double play. Len Kasper noted on the broadcast that despite allowing seven baserunners, only one run scored off Chatwood. So, yay? Chatwood’s still a work in progress, in my view.

Honestly, I don’t have much more to say about this game. These kinds of things happen. Here are Joe Maddon’s postgame comments [VIDEO].

As you can see, Joe didn’t have much to say about it either, adding this about Castillo:

It was just one of those games that got away. The Cubs clearly missed Anthony Rizzo’s bat in this series and will hopefully have him back Friday evening.

And thus this recap is going to be shorter than most. The Cubs, with the delay in the game and bad weather, likely didn’t get to their Washington-area hotel until 3 a.m. Hopefully, that still gives them enough time to get good rest before they begin a three-game series against the Nationals Friday evening at Nationals Park. Cole Hamels will start for the Cubs and Max Scherzer, who’s always tough on the Cubs, goes for the Nats. Game time is 6:05 p.m. CT and TV coverage will be via WGN.