Current Conditions

Mainly Sunny
23.4°C

Wood homers as Cubs beat Giants 5-2 for 2-0 NLDS lead

Fans celebrate after Game 2 of baseball's National League Division Series between the Chicago Cubs and the San Francisco Giants, Saturday, Oct. 8, 2016, in Chicago. The Cubs won 5-2. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)
October 08, 2016 - 10:07 PM

CHICAGO - Best in the majors during the regular season, the Chicago Cubs are one win from reaching the NL Championship Series for the second straight year.

Travis Wood took over when starter Kyle Hendricks got hurt and became the first relief pitcher since 1924 to hit a post-season home run , helping the Cubs beat the San Francisco Giants 5-2 Saturday night for 2-0 NL Division Series lead.

Madison Bumgarner, coming off a four-hit shutout of the New York Mets in the NL wild card game, tries to save the Giants' season when the series resumes Monday in San Francisco.

Cubs manager Joe Maddon remains wary of the Giants, World Series champions in 2010, '12 and '14.

"You watch how they react to different moments," Maddon said . "They're never panicked. They're never concerned. ... I really believe our guys will come ready to play knowing that they are also. That's just a given."

The Cubs, who start reigning NL Cy Young Award winner Jake Arrieta, are now one win from a matchup with the Los Angeles Dodgers or Washington Nationals. Swept by the New York Mets in last year's NLCS, Chicago led the big leagues with 103 wins during the regular season and is hoping for its first World Series title since 1908.

Ben Zobrist hit a run-scoring single off former Cubs pitcher Jeff Samardzija in the first, and Hendricks added a two-run, bloop single in a three-run second.

The Cubs were leading 4-2 in the fourth when Hendricks left the game after with a bruised right forearm after being hit by Angel Pagan's line drive.

Wood struck out Conor Gillaspie to strand Pagan, then sent a one-out offering from George Kontos halfway up the left-field bleachers in the bottom half. The only other reliever to homer in the post-season was the New York Giants' Rosy Ryan in Game 3 of the 1924 World Series.

Given a curtain call by a screaming crowd of 42,392, Wood joined Rick Sutcliffe (1984) and Kerry Wood (2003) as the only Cubs pitchers to go deep in the post-season. Travis Wood has nine regular-season homers in his big league career.

Wood pitched a hitless fifth and was credited with the win. Four more relievers completed Chicago's second straight six-hitter, with Aroldis Chapman throwing 12 of 16 pitches at 100 mph and up for his second consecutive save.

Hendricks, the major league ERA leader, gave up two runs and four hits in 3 2/3 innings.

"We picked him up tonight, having his injury and stuff and that's what we have done all year long," Wood said. "We pull on each other and end up backing each other up."

Samardzija's first career playoff start was a short one. The right-hander, who spent his first 61/2 seasons with the Cubs, was pinch hit for in the third after allowing four runs and six hits.

Down 4-0, San Francisco scored two in the third when Gregor Blanco doubled in a run and scored on Brandon Belt 's sacrifice fly.

"Just can't put your team in that much of a hole early in the game, especially against a good staff like they have over there," Samardzija said. "Like to have that one back, for sure, that one's on me."

HENDRICKS UPDATE

Hendricks said his arm "feels pretty good right now" and he hopes to be ready in a few days after X-rays showed no structural damage.

He said he felt pain after a few warmup pitches and exited after a discussion with Maddon.

"He told me if there's anything at all, he didn't want me in there," Hendricks said.

SEENs

Actor and comedian Bill Murray was back cheering on the Cubs for the second night in a row. But no, he wasn't wearing an "I Ain't Afraid of No Goat" shirt as he did on Friday.

Former Cubs closer Lee Smith threw out the ceremonial first pitch , and Chicago native and former WWE star CM Punk delivered the "Play Ball!" call before the game.

Actor Jeff Garlin sang "Take Me Out To The Ball Game" during the seventh-inning stretch.

UP NEXT

Giants: Bumgarner has pitched 23 consecutive post-season innings and is 8-3 with a 1.94 ERA in 13 post-season starts and 15 appearances.

Cubs: Arrieta won 18 games but had a 4.60 ERA in five starts last month. He gave up seven runs in a loss to Pittsburgh on Sept. 28.

News from © The Associated Press, 2016
The Associated Press

  • Popular kamloops News
  • Comments
  • Body of missing Cache Creek fire chief found
    CACHE CREEK - The body of Clayton Cassidy has been found. Around 10:30 p.m. yesterday, May 27, members of the Ashcroft fire department found his body during a patrol of Cache Creek, accordin
  • TRENDING NOW: Instant karma for angry dog walker
    When crossing a street we all pay attention to a car pulling up to an intersection, but this man seems to get really riled up for some reason. Of course, his threatening behaviour is under c
  • No, Okanagan Lake will not peak this weekend
    If you’re confused about projections for what Okanagan Lake is going to do over the next few weeks, you’re not alone. The City of Penticton issued a media release yesterday, May
  • Trinket hunters blamed for targeting ghost town cemetery in southern B.C.
    COALMONT, B.C. - Someone is digging holes in the cemetery of a ghost town in southern British Columbia and a member of the local historical society believes it's the work of misguided treasure
  • UPDATE: Kamloops teen found
    UPDATE: 9:38 A.M., MAY 28, 2017 RCMP say the 18-year-old has been located. All personal information has been removed. 9:35 A.M., MAY 27, 2017 KAMLOOPS - Kamloops police are looking for a mis
View Site in: Desktop | Mobile