Local News

Chicago,  IL (SportsNetwork.com)  - Anthony Rizzo's tie-breaking solo homer in the  bottom  of the seventh  inning propelled the  Chicago Cubs to their first series sweep of the season, capped by Thursday's 7-4 triumph over the New York Mets.

Rizzo finished 2-for-4 and Junior Lake had a two-run triple in Chicago's third victory  against the  Mets in as many days. Starting pitcher Travis Wood drove in three runs, two of which came on a homer in the second inning.

Wood  walked five and hit a batter in five-plus innings on the mound, but held the  Mets to two runs while not  factoring in the final outcome. Justin Grimm (2-2)  received the  win despite allowing a game-tying two-run homer to Andrew Brown in the top of the seventh.

Ruben  Tejada  and Chris  Young added  RBI singles for  New York. Mets starter Jacob  deGrom lasted  just five  innings, permitting  four runs  while walking three.

After  the Mets roared back from a 4-0 deficit with a two-run sixth inning and Brown's  blast in  the top of the  seventh, Rizzo put Chicago back in front by hammering  a fastball from Vic Black (1-1) deep into the seats in right-center in the Cubs' portion of the inning.

"At  [a] 3-1  [count] I don't think  [Black] wants to walk a batter there, and he's  got pretty good stuff, too," said Rizzo. "He challenged me and it worked out for me."

Lake's  two-out triple into the gap in right center provided some insurance in the eighth, coming after the Mets opted to intentionally walk Emilio Bonifacio with Darwin Barney stationed at second.

Neil  Ramirez had  no  trouble protecting  the three-run  lead  in the  ninth, retiring the side in order for his first career save.

"Anytime you can take a series and then potentially a sweep like we did today, it's  a  good thing,"  said Cubs  manger Rick Renteria.  "Those guys have been battling and they continue to grind."

Wood  had yielded just  one hit through the first three innings and helped his cause  in the  second with his eighth  career homer, part of a three-run frame extended by a successful challenge by Renteria.

Luis Valbuena reached on a leadoff double and later took third on a force play before  attempting to score on an Eli Whiteside fly ball. He was called out on a  strong throw  from Brown  in left,  but replays  showed he  narrowly evaded Travis d'Arnaud's tag and the call was overturned for the game's first run.

Wood  then swatted  deGrom's next  pitch  deep into  the bleachers  for a  3-0 advantage.

Chicago  tacked  on  another  run  off deGrom  an  inning  later  when  Barney doubled,  moved to third  on a grounder and beat Tejada's throw home on Wood's bouncer to short.

"My stuff was good, I just struggled with command," said deGrom. "I got behind a lot of people and had to pitch to them. That pretty much sums it up."

The  Mets failed to  score despite loading the bases in the top of the fourth, but  a walk  to Brown in the  sixth was followed by singles from Wilmer Flores and  Tejada  that got New  York on the  board. Young cut  the lead to 4-2 soon afterward with a bloop single off Brian Schlitter that plated Flores.

Grimm  came on for  Chicago in the seventh and surrendered a one-out single to Eric Campbell that preceded Brown's homer to left center.

                                   Game Notes

The  three-game  sweep was the Cubs'  first at Wrigley Field since July 13-15, 2012  against  Arizona, and first over  the Mets in Chicago since April 23-25, 2004 ... Brown had been recalled from Triple-A Las Vegas prior to the game ... Wood's homer was his second this season, also having connected against Arizona on  April 21  ... The Mets went  2-for-13 with runners in scoring position for
the  game and  4-for-30 in those situations during the series ... Barney ended 2-for-4  with two  doubles and  three runs  scored ...  Chicago chose  Indiana catcher/outfielder Kyle Schwarber fourth overall in Thursday's MLB Draft, with the Mets taking Oregon State outfielder Michael Conforto with the No. 10 pick.

 
Main Office:
217-824-3395