Cubs score 3 points in 8th place, top Giants 5-2

Cubs score 3 points in 8th place, top Giants 5-2

CHICAGO – Cody Bellinger, Ian Happ and Christopher Morel each had RBI singles in Chicago’s three-run eighth inning and the Cubs defeated the San Francisco Giants 5-2 Tuesday night to end a two-game slide.

Michael Busch opened the eighth inning against reliever Tyler Rogers (0-2) with a double from the right-center wall, his second hit of the game. Bellinger followed by barely bouncing his second goal through the left side of the infield to break a 2-all tie.

After Seiya Suzuki singled, Happ hit his second hit of the evening down the right field line to make it 4-2. Morel pinch hit and added a ground-ball RBI single to end the rally.

“Michael Busch’s double was huge, just to get it going, and make it a pressure inning,” Chicago manager Craig Counsell said. “And we had the right guys in the middle of the order coming up.

“And then we just put the ball in play and, you know, it helped us tonight. Just put the ball in play and find some holes.

Dansby Swanson hit a two-run homer into the opposite field for the Cubs, who won for the fourth time in twelve games. The right-handed shortstop tagged Giants right-handed ace Logan Webb for his seventh home run, which he delivered to right-center with help from a steady wind.

“Good things happen when I can hit the ball hard the other way,” Swanson said, “and tonight was obviously a good sign of that.”

Tyson Miller (2-0) got four outs, replacing Justin Steele for the win. Keegan Thompson struck out the ninth for his first save.

Curt Casali had two hits and two RBIs for the Giants, who announced the death of Hall of Famer Willie Mays during the game. The legendary outfielder played 22 seasons with the team, first in New York and then when the franchise moved to San Francisco.

The Wrigley Field crowd of 36,292 saluted Mays as the 93-year-old’s death was announced on the left field video board in the sixth inning.

Giants manager Bob Melvin said he learned of Mays’ death just before the game. When most of his players became aware as soon as the match started.

“It’s heavy hearts not only for the Bay Area and New York where he started, but also for the baseball world,” Melvin said. “This is one of the true icons of the game.”

Melvin, 62, of Palo Alto, California, said he grew up watching Mays play at Candlestick Park.

“I loved baseball because of Willie Mays,” Melvin said. “It meant so much.”

Webb allowed two runs and six hits in seven innings. The righthander struck out five and walked one while throwing 101 pitches before being relieved by Rogers.

“He gives us seven innings,” Melvin said. “It’s one ball in the air that got the wind a little bit.

“Other than that, they are two very good pitchers with basically the same lines across the board.”

Steele was sharp in his 10th start of the season, allowing two runs and four hits in 6 2/3 innings. The left-hander struck out eight and walked two in a fourth straight solid outing, but left with the score tied at 2 and after 96 pitches on a warm night and failed to earn his first win.

Swanson gave Chicago a 2-0 lead in the second inning with a drive that just reached the right-center stands.

Steele sailed through four innings, retiring 12 of 14 batters and allowing just two hits.

The Giants tied the score at 2-all in the fifth when Steele walked Jorge Soler and Mike Yastrzemski, then Casali drove in both runners with a double to the left-center gap.

Giants: LHP Blake Snell, on the 15-day IL since June 3 (left groin injury), threw a bullpen session Tuesday in San Francisco. “We’ll see how he comes in tomorrow and then make a decision,” manager Bob Melvin said. Snell, a two-time Cy Young Award winner, is 0-3 with a 9.51 ERA in six starts with San Francisco since signing a two-year, $62 million contract in March.

Cubs: OF Mike Tauchman was placed on the 10-day injured list before Tuesday’s game due to a left groin strain and INF Miles Mastrobuoni was called up from Triple-A Iowa to take Tauchman’s place on the roster. Tauchman left the Cubs’ 7-6 loss to the Giants on Monday after throwing away a single in the third inning. Manager Craig Counsell said Tuesday that Tauchman “probably needs four weeks to heal.”

RHP Kyle Hendricks (0-4, 8.20) will start for the Cubs in the series finale on Wednesday afternoon. The Giants had not named a starter.