The losing streak is the longest by a Chicago Cubs team in 10 years.
Wednesday night's 5-1 loss to the Houston Astros at Minute Maid Park was the Cubs' ninth in a row, dropping their record to 15-29.
The Cubs had been looking for a good sign, any kind of good sign. They got it in the first inning on a solo homer by Reed Johnson. That gave the Cubs a lead for the first time in one week, since they led the Phillies on May 16. They had gone 59 straight innings without leading.
Even with dependable Jeff Samardzija on the mound, the Cubs couldn't do much else. The Astros got two in the fourth and three in the ninth against wild reliever Rafael Dolis. The Cubs were 0-for-9 with runners in scoring position, and they stranded 10. It all left them muttering as they headed into an off-day Thursday before opening a series Friday in Pittsburgh. Things don't figure to get much easier, as the Cubs have just begun a stretch in which they play 16 of 19 away from Wrigley Field.
"It's getting very tough," said acting manager Jamie Quirk. Manager Dale Sveum was in Arizona, attending the high school graduation of his son. "This game is so mental day in and day out. It keeps coming at you. Obviously you wipe it away and you show up the next day wanting to win, but losing is never fun. That's our job to keep the up and they are doing a great job of it."