CHICAGO — Javier Baez led off the eighth inning with a tiebreaking homer, and the surging Chicago Cubs wiped out a four-run deficit to beat the St. Louis Cardinals 6-5 on Saturday.
Baez drove a 2-2 pitch from John Brebbia (1-1) to right for his 11th homer, sending the Cubs to their season-high sixth straight win. Fans chanted "Javy! Javy!" as he came out for a curtain call.
Taylor Davis hit a tying grand slam in the fourth against Michael Wacha for his first career homer.
Brandon Kintzler (1-0) worked a scoreless eighth. Pedro Strop retired all three batters in the ninth for his fourth save in five chances as the Cubs cut St. Louis' lead in the NL Central to a half-game despite a shaky start by Yu Darvish.
The right-hander threw 81 pitches, just as Kyle Hendricks did in Friday's four-hit shutout, but was nowhere near as effective. He gave up five runs and six hits while walking five in four-plus innings.
Jose Martinez homered leading off the second for the Cardinals. Wacha delivered in a big way at the plate, tying a career high with two hits, but couldn't protect a 5-1 lead as St. Louis lost its third straight game.
Wacha doubled and scored in the third, and drove in two with a single during a three-run fourth. His only other two-hit game was at Wrigley Field on July 8, 2015.
But he gave up five runs — four earned — and six hits in five innings.