1 of 5 | Chicago Cubs designated hitter Christopher Morel recorded two hits, including a walk-off home run, in a win over the Chicago White Sox on Wednesday in Chicago. File Photo by Bill Greenblatt/UPI | License Photo
Aug. 17 (UPI) -- Christopher Morel punched a 99-mph fastball to right field for a three-run homer, sprinted around the bases and ripped off his jersey, providing one of the most exciting walk-off blasts this season for the Chicago Cubs.
"He got around the bases pretty fast," Cubs manager David Ross told reporters after the 4-3 victory over the Chicago White Sox on Wednesday in Chicago. "I wanted to make sure he touched all the bases. What a great swing and great environment.
"Christopher Morel is just so electric. That ball was smoked. ... Crazy, crazy swing."
Morel went 2 for 4 with three RBIs and a run scored in the win. He is now hitting .260 with a career-high 19 homer runs and 59 RBIs this season.
"These fans, they give everything for us, we are going to give everything to them," Morel said on the Marquee Sports Network broadcast.
The Cubs trailed 3-0 entering the bottom of the eighth. Pinch hitter Nick Madrigal started the half-inning with a 362-foot solo shot to left field.
White Sox relief pitcher Aaron Bummer struck out pinch hitter Yan Gomes in the next at-bat. He then walked second baseman Nico Hoerner. Cubs left fielder Ian Happ grounded into the double play in the next exchange, ending the inning.
Relief pitcher Gregory Santos replaced Bummer on the mound to start the bottom of the ninth. Cubs outfielder Cody Bellinger doubled to center in the first at-bat of the half-inning. Santos then walked shortstop Dansby Swanson, bringing Morel to the plate.
Santos threw a 100.5-mph fastball to start that exchange, forcing a swing and miss from the Cubs designated hitter. Morel also missed on his second offering, a 91.7-mph slider. Santos then missed the strike zone with a slider to bring the count to 1-2.
He then tossed in a 99.5-mph sinker. Morel sliced his bat down at the offering, making contact in the middle of the strike zone. He then stood at home plate, watching the ball scream into the outfield before it cleared Wrigley Fields iconic, ivy-clad fence.
Morel dashed around first base and threw off his helmet near second. He then pulled his jersey off over his head after touching third and jumped into a crowd of teammates at home. He also ripped off his undershirt in celebration of the exciting finish.
Bellinger also recorded two hits and scored for the Cubs. White Sox first baseman Gavin Sheets went 1 for 4 with a double and two RBIs and a run scored in the loss.
The Cubs (62-58) will host the Kansas City Royals (39-83) at 2:20 p.m. EDT Friday at Wrigley Field. The White Sox (48-73) will face the Colorado Rockies (46-75) at 8:40 p.m. Friday at Coors Field in Denver.