The Cubs are starting to feel right at home playing in close games.
The Cubs pulled out another nail-biter Friday night in Cincinnati, coming from behind to take down the Reds 7-3 in 11 innings in front of 39,891 fans at Great American Ballpark.
A couple of unlikely heroes emerged in the 11th inning, as utility infielder Jonathan Herrera lined a base hit to right field to plate Anthony Rizzo before David Ross added a two-run double and Travis Wood drove in another run with a broken-bat groundout.
"That's what we need," Rizzo said. "That's what every good team has - every given day, all 25 guys can contribute."
The Cubs are establishing an identity as a group that keeps fighting late in games, never counting themselves out of a contest.
Friday was another example and led to good spirits in the locker room after a three-hour, 48-minute game.
"I've always really thought highly of a team that can win in extra innings on the road," Cubs manager Joe Maddon said. "That really indicates you are totally focused and into the game in its entirety.
"That's always been my measuring stick of a good team and we showed that tonight."
Hector Rondon shut down the Reds in the bottom of the 11th to cap off an impressive performance for the Cubs relievers - hurling five scoreless innings with six strikeouts, pitching around six baserunners (three hits, three walks).
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Jon Lester didn't factor in the decision, but he did pick up his first quality start as a Cub, albeit with the absolute minimum requirements. The lefty ace gave up three runs on five hits and a walk in six innings while striking out 10. But he couldn't keep Reds speedster Billy Hamilton off base, who singled and scored a run in the first and third innings, stealing three bases in the process.
"A good team win tonight, battling back," Lester said. "Seems like you continually give these guys chances to score runs and they're going to do it. That's a positive sign for us as pitchers that we can make mistakes, but at the same time, these guys will come back and pick us up like they did tonight."
Rizzo keyed the offensive charge early for the Cubs with a two-run homer in the fourth inning and added a double, a walk and a stolen base before singling with one out in the 11th. Chris Coghlan also hit a home run, a solo shot to the opposite field in the seventh to tie the game at 3.
Kris Bryant went 2-for-4 with a walk, a run and a stolen base as the back end of a double-steal with Rizzo in the ninth.
The Cubs are now 3-0 in extra innings games in 2015.