ATLANTA (AP) — David Ross believes balanced contributions are making his Cubs lineup look deep.
Willson Contreras and Patrick Wisdom took their turns as Chicago’s biggest hitters on Wednesday night.
Contreras gave Chicago the lead with a run-scoring double in the 10th inning, Wisdom followed with a two-run homer, and the Cubs beat the Atlanta Braves 6-3.
“Up and down the lineup, I don’t think it’s been one guy,” said Ross, in his third season as the Cubs’ manager. “I think everybody contributes down the lineup for us.”
Contreras lined his double to the left field wall off Tyler Matzek (0-1) to drive in automatic runner Ian Happ. After Frank Schwindel struck out, Wisdom launched a drive into the left-center seats for his third homer of the season.
The Cubs recovered after right-hander Mychal Givens blew a 3-1 lead in the eighth. With two outs, Givens loaded the bases on two singles and a walk. Dansby Swanson tied the game with a two-run single to right.
David Robertson (1-0) ended the eighth on Ozzie Albies’ groundout and struck out the side in the ninth. Rowan Wick pitched a perfect 10th for his first save.
The World Series champion Braves, still looking for their first series win, have split the first two games with the Cubs.
Chicago rookie Seiya Suzuki had two hits, including a run-scoring double off Charlie Morton in the Cubs’ two-run third inning.
Cubs right-hander Keegan Thompson entered the game with a streak of four consecutive scoreless relief appearances, each lasting at least 2 2/3 innings. Thompson added two more scoreless innings in relief of Mark Leiter Jr. before giving up his first run of the season on Travis d’Arnaud’s run-scoring single in the fifth.
Morton struggled with his control and was pulled with one out in the third. He allowed three runs on four hits and four walks as his ERA increased to 7.00.
“I think it’s the same theme, falling behind guys and when I get ahead I don’t put guys away,” Morton said.
Leiter was removed after two scoreless innings. The Braves loaded the bases in the second but Leiter escaped on Albies’ grounder to the mound. Ross acknowledged he entered the game planning to “get six to nine outs” from Leiter.
Leiter wants to be trusted for longer starts.
“I feel good,” Leiter said. “I feel ready to go 100 pitches or whatever is needed. But it was good to get the team win.”
Matt Olson lined a one-out double to the right-field corner off Leiter in the first inning. The exit velocity on the liner was 116.8 mph — setting a high mark for Olson’s career, according to MLB Statcast.
Cubs: LHP Wade Miley (left elbow inflammation) threw 46 pitches in batting practice. … RHP Alec Mills (lower back strain) felt tightness in his right quadriceps while working out on Tuesday and will not make a rehab start with Triple-A Iowa this week.
Braves: OF Ronald Acuña Jr. (right knee) was 2-for-5 on Wednesday night and is scheduled to play nine innings on Thursday in his rehab assignment with Triple-A Gwinnett. Acuña, hitting .368 with three stolen bases with Gwinnett, could beat his projected May 6 return to Atlanta by a few days. … Manager Brian Snitker said the laser procedure to correct OF Eddie Rosario’s blurred vision and swelling in his right eye “went as they anticipated” on Wednesday.
Cubs: LHP Drew Smyly (1-1, 2.45 ERA) will face his former Atlanta teammates in Thursday night’s final game of the series. He has a 5.79 ERA in two career appearances against the Braves, including a no-decision in his only previous start on Sept. 12, 2019, when he allowed three earned runs in four innings.
Braves: RHP Kyle Wright (2-0, 1.06) has allowed two runs over 17 innings in his first three starts with 26 strikeouts and two walks.
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