Houston Astros' José Abreu watches from the dugout during the...

Houston Astros' José Abreu watches from the dugout during the eighth inning of a baseball game against the Chicago Cubs, Tuesday, April 23, 2024, in Chicago. Credit: AP/Erin Hooley

CHICAGO — Mike Tauchman hit his first two homers of the season, and the Chicago Cubs took a five-run first-inning lead in a 7-2 win over Houston on Tuesday night that dropped the Astros 10 games under .500 for the first time since 2016.

Cody Bellinger hit a two-run homer in the first off J.P. France (0-3) and Tauchman hit a three-run drive. Tauchman added a solo homer in the eighth against Seth Martinez and tied his career high of four RBIs.

Bellinger left after the fifth inning with bruised right ribs.

Houston has lost three straight and six of seven. At 7-17, the last-place Astros are 10 games under .500 for the first time since an 18-28 start in 2016.

Jordan Wicks (1-2) allowed two runs and five hits in a season-high six innings with no walks and four strikeouts. Chicago has won seven of 10.

France (0-3) gave up five runs, five hits and four walks in five innings.

Jake Meyers had a solo homer for Houston.

Chicago Cubs closing pitcher Yency Almonte celebrates his team's 7-2...

Chicago Cubs closing pitcher Yency Almonte celebrates his team's 7-2 win over the Houston Astros in a baseball game Tuesday, April 23, 2024, in Chicago. Credit: AP/Erin Hooley

TRAINER’S ROOM

Astros: LHP Framber Valdez (elbow soreness) could rejoin the rotation this weekend when the club plays a two-game series against Colorado in Mexico City. … RHP Cristian Javier flew to Houston on Tuesday for further evaluation of the neck soreness that landed him on the 15-day injured list.

Cubs: The club placed RHP Kyle Hendricks (low back strain) and LHP Drew Smyly (right hip impingement) on the 15-day injured list and designated INF Garrett Cooper for assignment. Chicago recalled RHP Hayden Wesneski, LHP Luke Little and INF Matt Mervis from Triple-A Iowa. … OF Ian Happ was back in the lineup after missing two straight games with left hamstring tightness.

UP NEXT

Houston Astros pitcher Seth Martinez throws to first to force...

Houston Astros pitcher Seth Martinez throws to first to force out Chicago Cubs' Matt Mervis during the eighth inning of a baseball game Tuesday, April 23, 2024, in Chicago. Credit: AP/Erin Hooley

Houston's Spencer Arrighetti (0-2, 7.08 ERA) faces fellow RHP Jameson Taillon (1-0, 1.80) on Wednesday, Taillon's second start this season after recovering from a strained back.

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