Cubs who drove home only 3 runs in wins

A previous post examined Cubs who drove home the team's only 2 runs in wins.

Today's topic: those who drove home all 3 runs in wins.


As you might expect, there have been significantly fewer such 3-run games than there have been 2-run games.

Monday's 2-1 win at Miami, in which David Bote hit a solo homer and a sacrifice fly, was the 129th of its kind -- and just the 32nd in which the 2 RBI came in different innings.

The Cubs have won 668 games while scoring exactly 2 runs.

Thursday's 3-2 win at Pittsburgh was their 871st win with 3 runs.

But in only 67 of them has the same player produced all of the runs.

That is just 7.7 percent of 3-run wins, 1 of every 13, compared to 19.3 percent of 2-run wins, 1 of every 5.


54 different Cubs have been responsible for all 3 runs in a win.

4 of them did it 3 times: Joe Pepitone, Ron Santo, Sammy Sosa and Billy Williams.

5 more did it twice: Jody Davis, Andre Dawson, Charlie Deal, Andy Pafko and Hank Sauer.

The 45 who did it once include 3 current Cubs: Ian Happ, who hit a 3-run homer at home against the Reds on Sept. 14, 2018; Patrick Wisdom, who hit a go-ahead 3-run double at Colorado on Aug. 2, 2021; and Willson Contreras, who hit a sacrifice fly and a 2-run double at Pittsburgh on Sept. 29, 2021.

Each of those games ended 3-2.

The Cubs had another such game last season between those by Wisdom and Contreras. Frank Schwindel's 3-run homer was the difference in a 3-0 win at Minnesota on Sept. 1.

The Cubs have had not any games of the kind this year. They have won 8 games in which they scored 3 runs.


Well-known Cubs who never drove in all 3 runs in a win: Javier Baez, Kris Bryant, Gabby Hartnett, Ryne Sandberg, Kyle Schwarber, Alfonso Soriano and Hack Wilson.

Lesser lights who did: Frank Baumholtz, Johnny Butler, Adrian Garrett, Ival Goodman, Jose Nieves, Dave Rader, Carl Reynolds and Bob Scheffing.


3 PA, 3 RBI

In 31 of the Cubs' 67 wins in which the same Cub drove in all 3 runs, they came on 1 swing: 27 home runs, 1 triple and 3 doubles.

In 30 games, the player drove home 3 runs in a pair of trips to the plate.

In 6, he did it in 3 separate appearances, each in a 3-2 victory.


The first was Turner Barber, on July 9, 1920, at home against the Giants -- on his birthday, no less.

The newly 27-year-old first baseman, batting fifth, singled in the second inning, right after Dave Robertson had tripled.

A 2-out, 2-run single in the seventh off Grover Cleveland Alexander put the Giants in front, 2-1. But Robertson walked to start the Cubs' half and Barber doubled him home.

Barber's 2-out single in the ninth advanced the potential winning run to second, but the next batter struck out.

He popped up with 1 out and the bases loaded in the 11th.

But in the 13th, a single, a bunt and a groundout put a runner on third with 1 out. Robertson walked and stole second. Barber then won the game with his fourth hit of the day.


Less than 2 years later, on June 17, 1922, Alexander matched Barber's feat.

After the Cubs lost Game 1 of a doubleheader at Boston, Alexander's third-inning single tallied the first run of Game 2.

He gave up a 2-out RBI triple in the bottom half, then surrendered a triple and single in the fourth.

In the top of the seventh, the Cubs' first batter singled. A pinch runner reached third on a bunt and a groundout, then Alexander singled him home, tying the score.

A 1-out walk in the ninth was followed by a groundout, setting the stage for Alexander's third RBI single.

The Braves had a runner on second when a fly out ended the game.

A century after that game, Alexander remains the only Cubs pitcher to drive in their only 3 runs in a win.


Rogers Hornsby homered in the first inning at Boston on Aug. 11, 1929.

His 2-out single in the sixth broke a tie at 1.

In the eighth, with 2 out and runners on the corners, he doubled home the lead runner. The trailer was out at home and neither team scored again.


On June 11, 1952, at home against the Phillies, Hank Sauer led off the second inning with a home run that put the the Cubs in front.

With the score 1-1, he led off the sixth with another homer.

Then he led off the eighth with a third drive into the seats. All came against Curt Simmons.

In the ninth, the Phillies had runners on second and third with 2 out. When a ground ball went through the legs of first baseman Dee Fondy, the lead runner scored. But right fielder Gene Hermanski threw the ball to second baseman Eddie Miksis, who relayed it to catcher Johnny Pramesa in time to tag out the would-be tying run for the final out.

Sauer is the only Cub who ever hit 3 solo homers for the Cubs' only runs in a win. Clyde McCullough hit 3 in a 3-4 loss at Philadelphia in 1942.


The 2 Cubs who knocked in all 3 runs in wins in the 70 years since Sauer's feat both did it the same way: 3 singles, the last a walk-off for a 3-2 win in extra innings.

On July 26, 1969, against the Dodgers, Randy Hundley gave the Cubs the lead over in the second inning. He tied the game with a 2-out hit in the sixth, then won it in the 11th, with the bases loaded and 1 out.

On Sept. 4, 2016, against the Giants, Jason Heyward erased 1-run deficits with singles in the fourth and ninth. The latter came with nobody out, after Addison Russell doubled and went to third on a wild pitch.

In the 13th, Anthony Rizzo singled and went to second on a grounder. After Russell was walked intentionally, Heyward lined a hit to center.


2 PA, 3 RBI

In 5 of the 22 wins in which a Cub drove in all 3 runs in 2 plate appearances, both were home runs.

Each time, the player homered with a runner on base, then with the bases empty:

Frank Demaree, on June 14, 1936, in 3-1 win vs. Braves: homers in second and fourth innings

Hank Sauer, on Aug. 17, 1955, in 3-2 win at Cincinnati: homers in second and fourth

Leon Durham, on Sept. 6, 1987, in 3-1 win vs. Reds: homers in first and third

Sammy Sosa, on Aug. 10, 2003, in 3-1 win at Los Angeles vs. Dodgers: homers in first and fourth

Corey Patterson, on Sept. 14, 2004, in 3-2 win vs. Pirates: homers in eighth and 12th


Patterson's second homer was a walk-off.

The only previous walk-off homer by a player who produced all 3 runs in a win had come 90 years and 9 days earlier, on Sept. 5, 1914. Wilbur Good's 3-run, inside-the-park drive defeated the Pirates, 3-2.

The only other walk-offs of any kind in such games were the singles by Hundley, in 1969, and Heyward, in 2016, described previously.



Here are all the 3-run homers in wins with 3 runs, in chronological order:

1914-09-05: Wilbur Good, 3-2 vs PIT, 9th inning

1939-07-21: Carl Reynolds, 3-1 at BSN, 7th

1943-06-17: Ival Goodman, 3-2 at PIT, 4th

1944-09-13 (Game 2): Frank Secory, 3-2 vs CIN, 6th

1948-09-21 (2): Andy Pafko, 3-2 at NYG, 9th

1953-07-30: Ralph Kiner, 3-2 vs BRO, 1st

1955-06-05 (2): Frank Baumholtz, 3-1 at NYG, 9th

1959-09-06 (1); Ernie Banks, 3-0 at LAD, 10th

1966-05-07: Byron Browne, 3-2 at NYM, 6th

1969-06-24: Ron Santo, 3-2 vs PIT, 3rd


1969-08-19: Ron Santo, 3-0 vs ATL, 1st

1969-09-28: Billy Williams, 3-1 at PIT, 6th

1970-08-30: Joe Pepitone, 3-0 at SDP, 9th

1971-06-14: Joe Pepitone, 3-2 vs ATL, 8th

1971-08-20 (1): Johnny Callison, 3-2 at HOU, 2nd

1975-05-18: Adrian Garrett, 3-2 at SDP, 6th

1980-08-09 (1): Tim Blackwell, 3-1 vs MON, 5th

1983-08-18: Jody Davis, 3-0 vs ATL, 4th

1984-07-23: Ron Cey, 3-2 at PHI, 6th

1985-09-17: Jody Davis, 3-0 at MON, 6th


1992-10-04: Andre Dawson, 3-2 vs MON, 3rd

1995-06-10: Shawon Dunston, 3-0 vs COL, 7th

1999-09-25: Jose Nieves, 3-1 vs PIT, 5th

2003-07-29: Moises Alou, 3-0 vs SFG, 1st

2008-07-11: Aramis Ramirez, 3-1 vs SFG, 8th

2018-09-14: Ian Happ, 3-2 vs CIN, 7th

2021-09-01: Frank Schwindel, 3-0 at MIN, 3rd


The ninth-inning homers at New York by Pafko in 1948 and Baumholtz in 1955 both came with 2 out and the Cubs behind, 0-1.

The first-inning homer by Santo against the Braves in 1969 came in a no-hitter by Ken Holtzman.



The only 3-run triple by a Cub in a win with 3 runs was by Jerry Mumphrey, on Aug. 22, 1986. It broke a scoreless tie in the fourth inning.

The first 3-run double also came with no score. Charlie Deal hit it, in the 11th inning at Brooklyn on July 23, 1919.

Dom Dallessandro cleared the bases with a third-inning double at home against the Phillies on June 5, 1940.

No one did it again until Patrick Wisdom, in the fifth inning at Colorado on Aug. 4 of last year.



Here are all other combinations of plays on which players drove home all 3 runs in wins. The number of times is shown in parentheses if more than 1. Each play is followed by the only or most recent player to do it.

2-run homer and single (7): Phil Nevin, 2006

2-run homer and sacrifice fly (2): Sammy Sosa, 1997

2-run homer and groundout: Andy Pafko, 1948

2-run triple and homer: Billy Williams, 1971

2-run triple and sacrifice fly: Bob Scheffing, 1948

2-run double and sacrifice fly (3): Dave Rader, 1978

2-run single and sacrifice fly: Howard Freigau, 1926

homer and 2-run double: Bill Buckner, 1979

homer and 2-run single: Mark Bellho9rn, 2002

triple and 2-run triple: Mark Grace, 1992

double and 2-run homer: Clyde McCullough, 1953

double and 2-run single: Anthony Rizzo, 2013

single and 2-run homer: Derrek Lee, 2010

sacrifice fly and 2-run double: Willson Contreras, 2021

groundout and 2-run homer: Sammy Sosa, 2003


Others with 2-run homer and single: Harry Steinfeldt (1907), George Altman (1962), Billy Williams (1965), Steve Henderson (1981), Andre Dawson (1987) and Scott Servais (1998).

Other with 2-run homer and sacrifice fly: Ron Santo (1963).

Others with 2-run double and sacrifice fly: Charlie Deal (1919) and Johnny Butler (1928).

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