ST. LOUIS (AP) - The Chicago Cubs are coming close in a lot of games. They’re just having trouble winning many of them.
The Cubs rallied in the ninth inning to tie it against St. Louis closer Trevor Rosenthal, then lost to the Cardinals 4-3 in the 12th Tuesday night when Justin Grimm hit pinch-hitter Greg Garcia with the bases loaded.
Chicago is now 3-15 in games decided by two runs or less, but manager Rick Renteria preferred to focus on the positive.
“I’m more concerned if we didn’t fight back,” Renteria said. “The reality is we took the lead and they ended up going ahead on us, but we came back. I think the fact that we keep bouncing back is something.”
Luis Valbuena hit a two-run homer off Cardinals starter Adam Wainwright as part of a three-hit night.
“You have to keep going,” Valbuena said. “You see the team is pitching better and better. Every time it’s close in the ninth inning.”
Trailing 3-2 going into the ninth, Chicago tied it on Emilio Bonifacio’s RBI single with two outs. The blown save was the first for Rosenthal in 11 opportunities.
“The reality is at some point we’re hoping to come through and finish of some of those games,” Renteria said. “All in all, I think if we were going out there and laying down after losing the lead, then I would be concerned. But we’re coming back.”
Jhonny Peralta had an RBI and three hits, including a single to start the 12th off Grimm (1-2). A pair of one-out walks brought up Garcia.
Matt Adams and Matt Carpenter also drove in runs for the Cardinals.
Seth Maness (1-2) pitched a scoreless top of the 12th to get the win.
The Cardinals took a 3-2 lead in the sixth after Peter Bourjos opened with a bunt single off Carlos Villanueva. Bourjos went to second on a grounder, stole third on ball four pitch to pinch-hitter Jon Jay and scored on Carpenter’s grounder. Peralta added an RBI single.
Cubs starter Jake Arrieta went four innings, allowing one run on four hits and five walks. But he helped himself when he led off the third with a single and scored on Valbuena’s homer.
St. Louis got one of those runs back in the bottom of the third on a two-out, RBI infield single by Adams.
NOTES: Carpenter went 0 for 5 and is hitless in his last 15 at-bats… . Pat Neshek made his team-high 20th appearance for the Cardinals, and pitched a scoreless 11th inning to extend his scoreless streak to 13 1-3 innings. … The Cubs’ Jason Hammel (4-1) opposes Michael Wacha (2-3) on Wednesday.
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