The Cubbies were in control of this one most of the way through. Starting in the 2nd, on an Addison Russell RBI double, the Cubs built a steady lead in the early going. In the 3rd, the runs kept coming. First, Kris Bryant singled in a pair, then red-hot Ben Zobrist drove in another on a hard hit single into right. Finally, David Ross would come through with a laser to right field which fell into the glove of Matt Kemp just shy of a home run.
With a 5 run cushion, Melvin Upton’s solo shot in the top of the 4th didn’t seem to be too threatening. But slowly, Jon Lester’s command would diminish. After Zobrist added another run via an RBI single in the 4th, the Padres would answer back with 2 more of their own in the 5th.
Lester would exit with the lead, and would remain on the hook, ultimately walking away with the W.
The last bit of offense for the Cubs would come on a 2-run triple, extending the lead to 8-3.
But for one pitch, the Cubs‘ bullpen did a tremendous job, just as they have all year. The unfortunate moment came in the top of the 8th as reliever Adam Warren hung a backdoor slider over the middle of the plate before watching it sail out of the yard for a grand slam.
But still, with only a 1 run lead entering the 9th, the Cubs got it done. Hector Rondon got a rare chance at a save and he capitalized by striking out 2 of 3 to wipe out the Padres’ hopes of a comeback.