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The long ball returns, Quintana solid as Cubs return to the W column

WRIGLEY FIELD - After 20 straight games dating back to August 22nd, there was a much needed day off for the Cubs on Monday after being swept by the Milwaukee Brewers this past weekend. "It felt great to not do anything. It doesn't matter how you feel the day before...any off day feels great especially now in September and in the middle of some stressful baseball," says Cubs 3rd baseman Kris Bryant.

KB let off some of that stress with a 3 run HR (#26) to lead the charge in Tuesday nights 8-3 win over the NY Mets at Wrigley. "It's nice to win a game after 3 not so good games'" he said. Bryant takes a lot of walks but the Cubs will need a better average from Bryant with runners in scoring position (.212) down the stretch. His rbi total (62) is down considerably versus this time last year (93). He's the reigning MVP and through this years ups & downs, he's held his head high. "You kind of enjoy the ups and downs in this game, because when you’re in a down spot and come out of it, it just feels so much better. It’s important to realize that.”

Kris Bryant after his 3 run HR (Photo by John L Alexander)

Kris Bryant crossing the plate after his 3 run HR (Photo by John L Alexander)

Kyle Schwarber had a good day at the plate. He was 3-3 with a solo HR (#26) and 2 runs scored. Ian Happ hit a solo bomb (#22) and Ben Zobrist was 2-3 with an rbi.

Winning pitcher Jose Quintana helped himself with an rbi bunt single in the 4th to tie the game at 1. "It's really important for me because I know sometimes my at bats can change the game you know. I tired to make a good safety squeeze and it worked really good," Q said.

He wasn't too shabby on the mound either as he went 7 innings giving up 6 hits and 2 runs while striking out 7 with 1 walk. He threw 112 pitches-74 for strikes which qualifies as a quality start! "Q was very good tonight....he was really aggressive. He's focused and 100% invested," says Cubs manager Joe Maddon whose club is 2 games ahead of the St. Louis Cardinals with 18 to play.

Jose Quintana picked up his 10th win of the season (Photo by John L Alexander)

It's a race now and Kris Bryant seemed confident in his guys. "All we have to do is keep pace with them and things will work out but we can't get too far ahead of ourselves. We're playing good one is just gonna roll over."

Jon Lester looks for his 11th win tonight....Matt Harvey gets the start for the Mets. First pitch is set for 7:05 pm.

#OnDeck- Some reports ruled Addison RusselI out for the regular season with plantar fasciitis. I talked to him and he said he's eager to get back out there and he's feeling good. "End of the year is coming up...i'm looking forward to hopefully getting back out there the last week of games."

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