CHICAGO (AP) — Jason Hammel allowed one hit over seven innings and snapped a tie with a two-run single to lead the sizzling Chicago Cubs to a 5-3 victory over the Arizona Diamondbacks on Saturday.
Dexter Fowler added his 17th career leadoff home run, Anthony Rizzo hit his 13th homer and Hector Rondon pitched a perfect ninth to earn his 10th save for the Cubs, who have won four straight and 10 of 11.READ MORE: Belmont Cragin Carjacking Leads To Fiery Crash, Multiple Other Parked Cars Struck
Arizona went up 2-0 on Jake Lamb’s 10th homer in the first following a walk. But Hammel (7-1) settled down and allowed only one more walk, retiring his last 13 batters
The D-backs walked David Ross intentionally to load the bases in the fourth. Hammel responded with a grounder up the middle that got by Edwin Escobar (0-2), hit second base and darted into right field to cap a three-run inning.
Escobar gave up four runs and five hits in 3 2/3 innings in his second career start.
The Cubs bullpen created some drama.
Yasmany Tomas homered to lead off the eighth against Pedro Strop to get Arizona within 4-3. Strop allowed two more hits before Trevor Cahill replaced him and walked Paul Goldschmidt to load the bases with two out.
Lefty Travis Wood then entered, Richie Weeks Jr. pinch hit for the lefty Lamb and lined to second.
Rizzo homered to right off Daniel Hudson in the bottom of the inning in Arizona’s ninth loss in 12 games.
Hammel had to leave with hamstring cramping after just two innings in his last start. He overcame the intermittent rain to lower his ERA to 2.14 amid a remarkable Cubs season.
Chicago (39-15) has the best record in the majors and all five starters have sub-3.00 ERAs. The Cubs are 8-1 on a homestand that ends Sunday and are 5-1 against Arizona (24-34) which fell a season-worst 10 games under .500.
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Diamondbacks: RHP Shelby Miller (finger) was to start a game in extended spring training Saturday.
Cubs: It was Rondon’s first appearance since he was sidelined briefly with a sore back.
Arizona manager Chip Hale has intentionally walked three hitters in the series. The two on Friday scored in a five-run eighth inning. Hammel’s hit after Ross’ walk gave him seven RBIs, one behind St. Louis’ Adam Wainwright for most among major league pitchers.
Hale pinch-hit for Lamb in the eighth despite his earlier homer because he’s hitting .118 against lefties.
The Cubs held a moment of silence before the game for Muhammad Ali, who died Friday.
“If you’re of the age, then a part of your childhood is gone. It’s also a marker for all of us,” Cubs manager Joe Maddon said. “It’s a shame, but he truly left his mark.”
Cubs RHP Jake Arrieta (9-0, 1.56 ERA) seeks to win his 21st straight decision and move closer to Carl Hubbell’s record of 24 in the series finale Sunday. LHP Patrick Corbin (2-5, 4.96) starts for the D-backs.MORE NEWS: Surveilence Video Shows Moments Leading To The Arrest Of Allan M. Brown, Suspect In Kenosha Police Shooting
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