By Bruce Levine-
(CBS) The Cubs’ first walk-off hit at home in 2014 was good news for a team that had struggled to score runs all season. Through the first one-third of the season, the Cubs have now won only six times in their 25 games that have been decided by two runs or fewer.READ MORE: COVID-19 Update: Indiana Reports 336 New Cases, 30 Additional Deaths
On Tuesday night at Wrigley Field, Nate Schierholtz turned on an 0-2 breaking ball from the Mets’ Scott Rice, pulling a single to right field to score Anthony Rizzo with the game-winner in the bottom of the ninth inning of a 2-1 win.
Cubs manager Rickey Renteria talked about the run production problem that has led to his club being shut out a major league-high eight times in the first 54 games of his tenure.
“It is a tremendous feeling (the walk-off win), and it never gets old,” Renteria said. “I am glad to be experiencing it the first time here as a Cubbie.”
Schierholtz has had a slow start to the season, batting .212 entering play Tuesday. The three hits he had, including the game-winner, were the most the outfielder has had this year since collecting four hits on April 11.READ MORE: Coronavirus In Illinois: 268 New COVID-19 Cases, 15 Additional Deaths; 52% Of Adults Fully Vaccinated
“In that situation you just want to put the ball in play,” Schierholtz said. “Anything can happen off of the bat. I was not sure where the right fielder was playing. It really didn’t hit me until I was rounding first as you could probably tell.”
The Cubs mobbed the field, celebrating with Schierholtz near second base. This marked the Cubs’ first walk-off win since June 13, 2013.
“I know I am a better player than I showed the first two months,” Schierholtz said. “That really wasn’t me. I knew I was going to come around, it just took longer than I hoped. I still have a lot of work two do the next four months.”
Cubs starter Jake Arrieta struggled through 4 2/3 innings, allowing one run, three walks and seven hits that led to an early exit for the pitcher. The bullpen allowed just two hits the final 4 1/3 innings.
“It has been kind of a common theme for the bullpen to come in those situations and do a big job for us,” Arrieta said.MORE NEWS: Chicago Police Sergeant Struck By Hit-And-Run Driver
Bruce Levine covers the Cubs and White Sox for 670 The Score and CBSChicago.com. Follow him on Twitter @MLBBruceLevine.