Sunday, May 19, 2024

Clutch Performances Lead Diamondbacks to Thrilling 12-11 Win Over Cubs

PHOENIX — In a game filled with suspense and dramatic turns, the Arizona Diamondbacks snatched a 12-11 victory from the Chicago Cubs on Tuesday night, courtesy of Ketel Marte’s ninth-inning home run and Randal Grichuk’s decisive double in the tenth. This victory at Chase Field marked the second of a gripping series, setting the stage for an exciting finale.

As the game approached its climax, Grichuk delivered a pinch-hit RBI double on the second pitch from Cubs pitcher Drew Smyly, clinching the win. This hit allowed Christian Walker to score from second, triggering jubilant celebrations from the Diamondbacks as they flooded the field.

“The intensity was like a roller coaster, with so many highs and lows,” Grichuk commented postgame. “Stepping in and making a difference when it counted feels great.”

Despite a spirited comeback effort that saw the Cubs erase a trio of three-run deficits — highlighted by Ian Happ’s grand slam in a six-run seventh inning for an 11-8 lead — the Diamondbacks methodically fought back. Contributions from Blaze Alexander and Joc Pederson in subsequent innings set the stage for Marte’s game-tying homer, which barely cleared the right-center fence and was confirmed after review.

Marte, who notched four hits, remained poised. “You play the game the same way, no matter the situation. It’s not over till it’s over,” he said, echoing a resilient team ethos.

The Cubs’ offensive efforts were led by Happ and Nico Hoerner, who together sparked hope with robust batting performances. Yet, their efforts fell short as the team struggled on the mound, a sentiment echoed by Cubs manager Craig Counsell. “Our offense did their part tonight, but we just couldn’t contain them,” he lamented.

Earlier, the Diamondbacks established an early lead with homers from Lourdes Gurriel Jr. and Pederson, but the Cubs’ fifth-inning rally shifted the momentum before Arizona’s own response. Cubs starter Kyle Hendricks faced another challenging outing, surrendering seven runs over just over four innings, pushing his ERA higher amid a tough season start.

As both teams prepare for the series finale, they hope for more consistent pitching to complement their potent batting lineups. The Diamondbacks, meanwhile, assess the day-to-day status of catcher Gabriel Moreno, sidelined with a thumb injury, as they aim to build on their dramatic win.

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