Yu Darvish struck out a season-high 14 and allowed only two hits in six innings and the Chicago Cubs beat the San Diego Padres 4-1 Thursday to remain tied with Milwaukee for the NL’s second wild-card spot.
The Padres scored in the ninth when Manny Machado was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded and two outs, but Rowan Wick struck out Luis Urias to end it.
Chicago split the four-game series and won for just the second time in seven games. The Brewers beat the Miami Marlins 3-2.
Darvish (6-6) retired his first eight batters before allowing his first hit, an infield single by starter Dinelson Lamet. Darvish kicked the ball with his right foot and it caromed to third baseman Kris Bryant. Darvish struck out Greg Garcia to end the inning.
The big right-hander had at least one strikeout in every inning. After Greg Garcia tripled leading off the sixth, Darvish finished strong by striking out the side, including Eric Hosmer for the third straight time.
Darvish was one shy of his career high, set Aug. 12, 2013, at Houston while he was with the Texas Rangers. He led the big leagues that year with 277 strikeouts.
Down 4-0, the Padres scored when Machado pinch-hit for the first time in his career and was plunked. Urias looked at 2-2 breaking ball for strike three — Cubs pitchers fanned 19 overall.
Lamet (2-5) issued leadoff walks in the first and fourth and both scored, including Anthony Rizzo on Kris Bryant’s sacrifice fly in the first. Kyle Schwarber walked opening the fourth and Bryant singled. They pulled off a double steal and scored on Ian Happ’s single.
Lamet allowed three runs and four hits in five innings, struck out seven and walked two.
Ben Zobrist had an RBI grounder in the seventh.
San Diego’s Wil Myers was ejected by plate umpire Ramon De Jesus in the ninth after he questioned a strike call.
Cubs: LHP Jon Lester (12-10, 4.51) is scheduled to start the opener of a three-game home series against the Pittsburgh Pirates, who are due to counter with LHP Steven Brault (4-4, 4.13).
Padres: LHP Joey Lucchesi (10-7, 3.84) is scheduled to start the opener of a three-game series at Colorado, which will counter with RHP Jeff Hoffman (1-6, 7.06).
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