It's been 32 years since the Chicago Cubs last shut out the same opponent three straight times.
They did so against the Cincinnati Reds.In position to do it again, the Cubs try for their first series sweep of the visiting Reds in five years Wednesday night.One night after Travis Wood and three relievers held Cincinnati (71-81) to three hits in Chicago's 1-0 victory, Jake Arrieta struck out 13 and allowed only an eighth-inning double to Brandon Phillips while going the distance in a 7-0 win Tuesday."It's an exciting night and a lot of fun and one I'll remember for a long time," Arrieta told MLB's official website.The Cubs (67-84) now have a chance to shut out the same opponent in three straight meetings for the first time since blanking the Reds on April 28, 1982, then again July 9-10. That also was the most recent time Cincinnati had it done.Rookie Kyle Hendricks (6-2, 2.38 ERA) gets his chance to stymie the Reds, who will try to avoid a fourth straight defeat and being swept by Chicago for the first time since July 24-26, 2009.Hendricks allowed four runs in six innings a 6-4, 12-inning win at Cincinnati on July 10 in his major league debut, then went 6-1 with a 1.60 ERA in the next nine starts.That successful stretch ended last Wednesday when he gave up a run through five innings then was charged with three more while not finishing the sixth in an 11-1 loss at Toronto."I felt strong through the whole outing, but it sucks getting beat like that," he said."For me personally, I'm just going to move on."Hendricks could have Anthony Rizzo behind him after the All-Star first baseman sat out a night after delivering a walk-off homer Monday in his return from missing 18 games with back problems."I would say I plan on giving him every other day (off) and will increase his playing time to two days in a row, maybe three," manager Rick Renteria said of Rizzo, who is batting .353 with four homers and six RBIs in his last nine contests.It's uncertain if rookie Arismendy Alcantara will miss a second straight contest after he injured his hand Monday.Jorge Soler, another of Chicago's highly touted young prospects, homered and had two RBIs on Tuesday. The Cuban outfielder is 7 for 14 while recording two of his five home runs and five of his 15 RBIs in four games versus Cincinnati.Cincinnati's Daniel Corcino (0-0, 5.19) pitched a scoreless inning of relief during a 3-0 home victory over the Cubs on Aug. 26 in his big league debut.The right-hander faces them again after he allowed two runs and two hits in six innings of a 3-2 loss at Milwaukee on Friday in his first career start and third overall appearance."He impressed me a great deal," manager Bryan Price said. "He's a little bit more polished than I anticipated seeing and he handled that situation very, very well."Ryan Ludwick went 3 for 3 with a home run against Hendricks in July, and could be in the lineup after sitting the first two of this set.