Relive dramatic 2000 Cubs-Crew clash

May 28th, 2020

CHICAGO -- For seven innings, the Brewers and Cubs battled through what looked like a routine rivalry game at Wrigley Field. Then, the wheels came off at the Friendly Confines on that afternoon two decades ago, resulting in an incredibly wild win for the North Siders.

"We didn't give up. We know how Wrigley Field is," Cubs third baseman Willie Greene told The Associated Press after the 9-8, 11-inning victory that featured a Sammy Sosa home run and a dramatic finish.

Greene played the role of hero for the Cubs that day, connecting for a two-out, walk-off single against Milwaukee's Valerio De Los Santos that plated Ricky Gutierrez and ended a grueling affair. The chaos of the final few frames -- the teams combined for 13 runs in the final four innings -- was a departure from the game's beginnings.

Both Brewers starter Jason Bere (three runs allowed in 6 2/3 innings) and Cubs starter Kevin Tapani (three runs and 10 strikeouts in 7 2/3 innings) spun a quality start for their respective team. Bere's only blemish was a homer-riddled fourth, when Sosa and Mark Grace hit back-to-back shots, and Green later added a solo blast.

The Cubs carried a 3-1 advantage through seven innings before Milwaukee churned out seven runs across the eighth and ninth. That 8-3 lead for the Brewers, however, was washed away by an ugly bottom of the ninth. Milwaukee made two errors, issued four walks and allowed a three-run homer to Henry Rodriguez, and it all came with two outs in the book.

In that ninth, Grace followed three straight walks from Bob Wickman by legging out a grounder to shortstop Mark Loretta. An error on the play allowed two runs to score, pulling the game into a deadlock at 8. Grace had to exit due to a hamstring injury sustained while hustling up the line to beat out a potential game-ending grounder, too.

"It was painful both physically and mentally for me. A crazy game," Grace told the Associated Press that day. "We were four outs from a pitching gem from Kevin Tapani, and then they were one out from a five-run victory. ... It's just pretty typical of the Cubs and Brewers."