Twice with two outs, the Cubs offense comes alive in a win over the Dodgers
CHICAGO – No worries, Cole. Your offense had your back, even if they waited as late as they could during innings to get on the board.
After falling behind 3-0 following a so-so start for Hamels, the Cubs scored seven-straight runs with two outs in the sixth and seventh, then held off a late charge by the Dodgers to win 7-6 Wednesday night at Wrigley Field.
Dramatic three-run homers by Javier Baez then Jason Heyward with two outs in the sixth then Anthony Rizzo’s double with two gone in the seventh helped the Cubs to their eighth win in their last ten games. Those also helped out a rare off-night for Hamels, who walked a season-high six batters after not issuing a walk in three-straight starts.
He allowed three earned runs in 5 1/3 innings, but kept the Cubs in the game, and allowed for the hitters to find themselves late in innings.
That would be the sixth inning, just after Cody Bellinger’s two-run homer put Los Angeles up by three. A Daniel Descalso hit came in between a pair of Cubs’ outs, then a walk to Rizzo brought up Baez with two outs. After keeping the Cubs off the board the first 5 2/3 innings, Walker Buehler left a ball hanging inside, and the shortstop crushed it into the seat for his eighth homer of the year to tie the game.
Baez now has five hits and 5 RBI along with two homers in his last three games, bringing his average to .312 for the year with a .656 slugging percentage.
When he left the mound, the Cubs started a second rally against Scott Alexander, which began with a David Bote double then an intentional walk to Willson Contreras. Jason Heyward followed that with a three-run opposite field homer to put the Cubs up by three and give him his fifth round-tripper of the year.
Another two-out rally came in the seventh, when Joe Kelly got the first two outs of the inning but then hit Kris Bryant. Rizzo made him pay, putting a ball into the gap in right-center, allowing Bryant to easily score from first to make it 7-3.
That would prove critical after Alex Verdugo took a Steve Cishek pitch out of the park with two runners on to cut the lead to one. Pedro Strop would make the run hold up in the ninth as he picked up his third save of the season.
It was a game in which the offense arrived late, but when it did, came through for a suddenly surging Cubs’ team.