Kris Bryant homered with two outs in the ninth inning to lift the surging Chicago Cubs to a 2-1 victory over the Cleveland Indians on Monday in a makeup of a rained out game from June 15.
The rookie, who had homered twice Sunday, lined a pitch from Cleveland reliever Zach McAllister (3-4) into the right field bleachers to give Chicago its fifth straight win and 21st victory in 26 games.
Carlos Santana singled home pinch runner Abraham Almonte with the tying run with two out in the ninth to spoil Jon Lester's bid for his first shutout and complete game with the Cubs.
Backed by four double-plays, Lester rebounded from his shortest start of the season to pitch his longest since joining the Cubs. He was relieved by Hector Rondon (5-2) with two outs in the ninth after scattering six hits and striking out six.
Anthony Rizzo's triple in the seventh drove in Chris Coghlan — who had doubled for only Chicago's second hit — to break a scoreless tie in a pitching duel between Lester and Indians ace Corey Kluber.
Kluber flirted with a no-hitter for the third time in his last four starts, then allowed just one run on four hits while striking out in 11 in 7 2/3 innings He retired the first 16 Cubs hitters before back-up catcher David Ross lined a single to center with one out in the sixth.
Lester nearly matched Kluber through the first seven, facing only 22 Cleveland hitters.
Both starters rebounded from shaky previous outings after being on rolls.
Lester had won four straight decisions in five starts before lasting only 2.2 innings against Detroit last Wednesday when he gave up seven runs on seven hits in a 15-8 loss. In his previous five outings, the lefty permitted eight runs on 27 hits and struck out 40.
Kluber gave up six runs — and four homers — in six innings in Boston last Wednesday, but prior to that start had back-to-back complete-game wins against Minnesota. He allowed a combined four hits and two runs and fanned 17 in the two contests.
It looked like the Cubs might have their first hit — and a 1-0 lead — in the third when Ross smashed the first pitch he faced just wide of the left field foul pole. The drive was originally called a home run, but was overturned following a video review.
Lester faced just nine hitters through three innings thanks to two double plays. He was bailed out again in the fourth, when Santana bounced into an inning-ending double play with runners on first and third and one out.