EditorsNote: 2nd graf, should be four homers, not three; smaller changes elsewhere
Pinch hitter Ian Happ hit a tiebreaking home run to spark a four-run seventh inning and Javier Baez homered twice as the Chicago Cubs held on for a 6-5 victory over the visiting Oakland Athletics on Monday night at Wrigley Field.
The Cubs won their fourth straight and improved to 12-2 in their last 14 home games by hitting four homers and totaling 12 hits.
Happ snapped a 2-2 deadlock when he drove a full-count, two-seam fastball from Blake Treinen (6-4) over the right-center field bleachers at an estimated distance of 474 feet. Happ’s first home run of the season came in his 18th at-bat of 2019, and his 40th career homer was the longest by a Cub this season.
Baez celebrated the fifth anniversary of his major league debut with a game-tying 454-foot homer into the left field bleachers off Oakland starter Chris Bassitt in the sixth. The shortstop then hit a two-run shot into the basket in front of the left field bleachers drive off Treinen to make it 6-2 in the seventh.
Nicholas Castellanos hit his first homer since being acquired from Detroit last week, a solo shot in the bottom of the first. He then added an RBI double between Happ’s and Baez’s homers in the seventh.
Cubs starter Kyle Hendricks went the first 6 1/3 innings and allowed two runs on one hit. He struck out five, walked two and threw 104 pitches.
Oakland’s lone hit off Hendricks was a two-run homer by Marcus Semien in the third that landed in the glove of a fan wearing a Cubs shirt who might have reached over the fence. The Cubs opted not to challenge the call, however, and Semien’s 18th homer gave the A’s a 2-1 lead that lasted until Baez’s first homer.
Rowan Wick (2-0) recorded the final two outs of the seventh to keep the game tied, then became the pitcher of record when the Cubs scored four in their half of the inning. But Chicago reliever Steve Cishek allowed a two-run homer to pinch hitter Nick Martini and Semien’s second homer on consecutive pitches in the eighth.
Brandon Kintzler came on in relief and ultimately stranded two to end the eighth. Kyle Ryan recorded the first two outs of the ninth before walking pinch hitter Khris Davis and allowing a single to pinch hitter Chad Pinder. David Phelps entered to face Semien and converted his sixth career save (and first this season) by retiring Semien on a warning-track fly ball to left field.
Bassitt allowed two runs on eight hits in six innings. He struck out five and walked two.
—Field Level Media