SAN DIEGO (AP) — Major league ERA leader Kyle Hendricks pitched six effective innings and the Chicago Cubs finished off a three-game sweep, beating the San Diego Padres, 6-3, on Wednesday.
Hendricks (12-7) gave up two runs and four hits, striking out eight and leaving with a 2.19 ERA. He has allowed no more than three earned runs in 17 straight starts.
There Cubs relievers took over for the NL Central leaders, with Aroldis Chapman pitching the ninth for his 29th save in 32 chances.
Willson Contreras homered and Ben Zobrist drove in two runs as the Cubs won for the 22nd time in 27 games. At 81-45, they are 36 games over .500 for the first time since ending the 1945 season at 98-56.
The Padres have dropped nine of their past 12. Paul Clemens (2-3) took the loss.
Jorge Soler and Addison Russell also drove in runs for the Cubs.
Ryan Schimpf tripled and doubled for the Padres.
The Cubs started fast when Fowler led off the game with a double and Kris Bryant nearly launched his third homer of the series. Instead, his drive hit the top of the wall and ended up being a long single.
Zobrist then hit a two-run triple and scored on Soler’s sacrifice fly.
Cubs: LHP Mike Montgomery (1-1, 2.77) starts Friday in the opener of a three-game series at Dodger Stadium. He makes his second start for the Cubs, after taking a no-hitter into the fifth inning on Sunday against the Colorado Rockies.
Padres: RHP Jared Cosart (0-1, 4.54) opens Friday’s three-game set at Miami. He was traded from the Marlins to San Diego last month.
Copyright 2016 The Associated Press.