Chicago Cubs Score and Recap (5/7/24): Cubs 3, Padres 2 – Busch Whacks Walk Off Homer

The Cubs and the Padres played a low-scoring pitching battle that came down to the final at-bat Tuesday. At one point, it looked as if Chicago’s offensive woes were going to waste another quality start but they were able to scratch out a couple of late runs to earn a dramatic walk-off victory.

Shōta Imanaga continued his brilliant start to the season with another dominant performance, keeping San Diego off the board through the first four frames. Cody Bellinger made his return to the lineup in style with a solo home run off of Randy Vásquez in the 4th to give the Cubs a 1-0 advantage.

Neither team could do much offensively and the game remained 1-0 into the 8th inning. Craig Counsell tried to avoid his shaky bullpen and sent Imanaga back out in the top of the 8th. Unfortunately, it did not work as a single was followed by a two-run Jurickson Profar homer to put the Padres up 2-1.

The Cubs were able to answer right back in the bottom half with a walk and a single to put men on the corners with nobody out for Christopher Morel. Morel lofted a sacrifice fly to center field that tied the game. Héctor Neris again worked around a couple of base runners in the top of the 9th to keep things deadlocked.

Michael Busch stepped up to the plate in the bottom of the 9th with a steady rain coming down at Wrigley Field. Before anyone could even think the words rain delay, Busch jumped on a first-pitch fastball from Enyel De Los Santos and drove it over the right field wall for a game-winning home run as Chicago walked it off 3-2. (Box score)

Key Moment

Nico Hoerner made an incredible diving catch on a Xander Bogaerts blooper behind second base to end the 8th inning. The Padres had a runner at third who would have scored the go-ahead run if the ball had dropped.

Why the Cubs Won

The starting pitching was once again outstanding and it allowed the hitters to do just barely enough to pull out the victory.

Stats That Matter

  • Even the home run Imanaga gave up was on a pretty good pitch and he very much deserved the win: 7 IP, 2 R, 7 H, 8 K, and 1 BB.
  • Bellinger did not show any signs of rust with three hits on Tuesday including the homer.
  • Busch has been scuffling a bit lately but he hit the ball very hard twice in this game.

Bottom Line

Bellinger makes a huge difference in this lineup and with Seiya Suzuki expected back this weekend hopefully the offense will really kick into gear. Imanaga just keeps rolling and the Cubs have to be just thrilled with his contribution so far. The only thing really holding this squad back right now is the bullpen and that is the easiest thing, usually, to address during the season.

On Deck

The deciding game of the series is Wednesday afternoon at 1:20pm CT. Hayden Wesneski start against Dylan Cease with broadcast on Marquee and 670 The Score.

Back to top button