Chicago Cubs claim series win with 7-2 victory over Arizona Diamondbacks

Chicago Cubs' Kris Bryant left scores a run ahead of a tag by Arizona Diamondbacks pitcher Zack Godley right during the first inning of a baseball game Sunday Aug 13 2017 in Phoenix. The Cubs' Bryant scored on a wild pitch by the Diamond

The Chicago Cubs and Arizona Diamondbacks meet Saturday in Major League Baseball action at Chase Field.

Chicago led the division by 5 1/2 games before play on August 2, but the Cardinals have closed with eight straight victories, their longest winning streak in two years.

Chicago reopened a one-game lead over St. Louis in the NL Central.

But the resurgent Cardinals have been gaining ground on both teams for more than a week now, and that's changing the dynamics of both the NL Central race and the wild card race.

"It's never easy", Cubs third baseman Kris Bryant said about a division race that's been tightened by St. Louis' eight-game winning streak.

Cubs: Contreras, injured running to first base at San Francisco on Wednesday, is expected to be sidelined 4-6 weeks.

The Cubs, playing at Chase Field for the first time since taking three of four there during their first road series in 2016, opened a 2-0 lead in the first with a lot of help from Walker's wildness. Jon Lester gets the ball, and he is 8-6 with a 3.97 ERA and 146 strikeouts this season.

"I really know Mark knows he messed it up", Maddon said.

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"I think we put together some good at-bats that last inning", Bryant said.

"If you told me on the first day of spring training that we'd be 4 1/2 up in wildcard race, sign me up, let's roll". Former Cy Young Award victor Jake Arrieta takes the mound for the Cubs against former Cubs farmhand Zack Godley in a rematch from August 2. Lackey (10-9) allowed three runs on four hits in 5 1/3 innings, struck out seven and walked three, throwing just 85 pitches.

Arrieta is rounding into form after a bumpy first half, going 3-1 with a 2.20 ERA in five starts since the All-Star break.

Red Sox 3, Yankees 2 • Rafael Devers hit a stunning homer off Aroldis Chapman to tie the game in the ninth inning, and fellow Red Sox rookie Andrew Benintendi singled home the go-ahead run in the 10th as Boston won in NY. Arrieta is 4-2 with a 2.18 ERA in seven starts since July 2, despite that Aug, 2 loss, and beat the Giants 5-3 on Monday while allowing three runs in 6 1/3 innings.

Bryant singled in each of the first two innings as the Cubs scored three times against Walker, and finished 3-for-3 with a walk and a hit by pitch.

Patrick Corbin gave them a chance to play with a lead.

A good night for Schwarber, indeed, in a ballpark where he has very unpleasant memories.

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