Javier Baez bashes two homers as Chicago Cubs stay alive

By Tom Musick, The Sports Xchange  |  Oct. 19, 2017 at 1:46 AM
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CHICAGO -- Javier Baez hit two home runs, and the Chicago Cubs staved off elimination with a 3-2 victory over the Los Angeles Dodgers in Game 4 of the National League Championship Series on Wednesday night.

Willson Contreras also hit a solo home run for the Cubs, who trimmed their series deficit to 3-1. Game 5 is scheduled for Thursday night at Wrigley Field.

Cody Bellinger and Justin Turner each hit solo home runs for the Dodgers. The loss snapped a six-game postseason win streak for Los Angeles, which remains one victory shy of reaching the World Series for the first time since 1988.

Right-hander Jake Arrieta (1-0) battled into the seventh inning in what might have been his final game with the Cubs. The soon-to-be free agent allowed one run on three hits in 6 2/3 innings. He walked five and struck out nine.

Dodgers left-hander Alex Wood (0-1) allowed three solo home runs and a single in 4 2/3 innings in his first career postseason start. He walked none and struck out seven.

Cubs right-hander Wade Davis allowed one run in two innings to pick up his fourth save of the postseason.

Turner pulled the Dodgers within 3-2 in the eighth on a high blast off the left field video board.

A bizarre sequence unfolded three batters later as Dodgers center fielder Curtis Granderson appeared to swing and miss at strike three. After home plate umpire Jim Wolf conferred with the other umpires, the call was overturned and ruled a foul tip.

Cubs manager Joe Maddon was ejected after a vehement argument with replays being shown on the video board showing that Granderson did not make contact. Davis officially struck out Granderson on the next pitch, and also Chase Utley to escape the jam.

Chicago jumped to a 2-0 lead in the second behind a pair of solo home runs from Contreras and Baez. Contreras stood to admire his monster shot, which traveled an estimated 491 feet and slammed off the video board in left field. Baez pulled a towering blast just inside the left-field foul pole.

Los Angeles cut the deficit to 2-1 in the following inning on Bellinger's line-drive home run down the right field line. The homer was Bellinger's first of the series and second of the postseason.

Baez homered again in the fifth to increase Chicago's lead to 3-1. He clubbed a low pitch into the first row of the left field bleachers for the first multi-homer postseason game of his career.

NOTES: Cubs 2B Javier Baez entered the night in an 0-for-20 postseason skid. ... Dodgers OF Yasiel Puig hit safely for the fifth time in seven postseason games. ... Cubs OF Albert Almora Jr. batted in the leadoff spot for the first time in the series and went 1-for-4. He replaced veteran OF Jason Heyward, who did not start for the third time in nine postseason games. ... Dodgers C Yasmani Grandal made his series debut and went 0-for-1 with three walks. He hit .247 with 22 home runs and 58 RBIs in 129 games during the regular season. ... Cubs C Willson Contreras and Dodgers 3B Justin Turner became the third and fourth players to homer off the left field video board in 2017.

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