CHICAGO – Kyle Hendricks mixed speeds, hit his spots and kept hitters off balance. It was a vintage performance that added up to his first win of the season and another victory for the rolling Cubs.
Hendricks struck out a season-high 11 over seven scoreless innings, and the Chicago Cubs beat the Arizona Diamondbacks 5-1 on Friday for their fourth straight win.
“Classic Kyle,” manager Joe Maddon said.
Hendricks (1-3) became the third consecutive Cubs starter to go seven innings without giving up a run after Jose Quintana and Cole Hamels did it in back-to-back shutouts against Miami. The right-hander gave up three hits, walked two and finished one strikeout shy of a career high after losing his first three starts.
“Q and Cole have been doing an unbelievable job, just attacking guys,” Hendricks said. “I think it's filtering down to the rest of us now. I've just been trying to stay right in stride with them, establish the heater early, attack guys, don't give in. I did have a couple walks that weren't great, but at least I made good pitches even in that situation.”
The Cubs went 31 innings without allowing a run, matching their longest streak since July 1976, before Brad Brach gave up an RBI double to Ketel Marte with one out in the ninth. Pedro Strop came in with runners on second and third and retired Nick Ahmed on a grounder before striking out Carson Kelly to secure the Cubs' eighth win in 11 games. Chicago is 9-9 after a 1-6 start.
Kris Bryant drove in two runs with a bases-loaded double in the second. He also singled and scored in a two-run sixth.
Anthony Rizzo hit an RBI triple in the fourth as the Cubs chased a wild Merrill Kelly (1-2). Willson Contreras added two hits, including an RBI single against Matt Koch in the sixth.
Javier Baez cooled off after four straight multihit games, going 0 for 5 with three strikeouts. The Cubs went 4 for 17 with runners in scoring position, but started a six-game homestand on a winning note after sweeping three at Miami.