SAN FRANCISCO — So much was similar about the first two games of a four-game set between the Cubs and Giants. But the Cubs’ 4-2 win Friday was different from the series opener in a coupe key aspects: Starter Marcus Stroman pitched deep into the game, and the Cubs offense put together a late rally.
They evened the series 1-1.
The Cubs didn’t put a runner on base until the fourth inning, when Giants starter Alex Cobb hit Willson Contreras with a pitch. The same inning, Ian Happ ended Cobb’s no-hit bid. Patrick Wisdom led off the fifth inning with a solo homer to break the scoreless tie.
Talk about deja vu. The night before, Contreras reached base once, when he was hit by a pitch. Happ broke up a no-hitter in the seventh inning, and Wisdom hit a two-run home run to avoid a shutout.
Stroman held the Giants scoreless through six innings. In his past four appearances, he’s limited opponents to a combined two runs.
“I’ve just been on a roll,” Stroman said. “Body feels good, sinker’s doing everything I need it to do, and everything kind of plays off that.”
Then relievers Scott Effross and Mychal Givens shut down the Giants for the next two innings.
“[They’re] throwing as good as anybody,” manger David Ross said. “I’m not finding pockets, I’m not trying to match them up. It’s like, ‘Here’s your inning, go for it.’”
The Cubs offense also rallied in the ninth to give closer David Robertson some cushion. Nico Hoerner drew a walk to get things going, and Wisdom hit a double on the right-field line to put two runners in scoring position. Back-to-back singles from Frank Schwindel and Alfonso Rivas, plus an error on Christopher Morel’s fly ball to right field gave the Cubs a 4-0 lead.
Robertson made it interesting, giving up a two-run homer to Wilmer Flores. But he got out of the inning without anymore damage.