Chicago at Los Angeles

Scoreboard
Chi. Cubs «2002100005101
L.A. Dodgers000200001360

Streaking Cubs move above .500 for first time in a month

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports
  •  

LOS ANGELES -- The Chicago Cubs are still a power-hitting team, as the Los Angeles Dodgers found out.

Jerry Hairston, Michael Barrett and Aramis Ramirez homered for the Cubs on Monday night in a 5-3 victory that extended their winning streak to four games and put them over .500 (25-24) for the first time in a month.

Home runs accounted for a major league-high 45.6 percent of Chicago's runs last season, when the Cubs led the NL with a franchise-record 235 homers. They no longer have Sammy Sosa and Moises Alou, who combined for 74 homers, but they again lead the league with 65.

"You really don't know until you get into the season, but somebody always emerges," manager Dusty Baker said. "This year, Derrek Lee has emerged. He has double figures, Aramis and Corey (Patterson) have double figures, and we've made up some of that ground with Jeromy Burnitz and Michael Barrett. That's how you account for it."

Greg Maddux (3-3) got his 308th victory, allowing two runs -- one earned -- and five hits in six innings. The right-hander won for the first time in four starts since beating the New York Mets 7-0 on May 10 in Chicago.

It was the third consecutive start without a walk for the four-time Cy Young winner, who is averaging fewer than two walks per nine innings in his career and set an NL record in 2001 by pitching 72 1/3 consecutive innings without allowing one.

"It's not about walking guys, it's about making pitches good enough to get guys out," Maddux said. "Tonight I made some good ones and got away with some bad ones."

Ryan Dempster, the fourth Chicago pitcher, finished the six-hitter for his fifth save in six chances, allowing a solo homer to Olmedo Saenz, who drove in all three Los Angeles runs.

All three Cubs homers came off Wilson Alvarez (1-3), who allowed five runs and nine hits over five innings in his second spot start in place of injured Odalis Perez. In his previous outing, Alvarez gave up six runs in three innings -- including two homers -- in a 10-2 loss at San Francisco.

"I'm hurting the team. The way I'm pitching right now, I don't deserve to start again," Alvarez said. "I'm throwing the ball over the plate, but the location's poor. Everything's like right down the middle. I don't have the stuff to blow people away. That's why I'm giving up those home runs. If I'm not making my pitches, I'm not going to get people out."

Hairston drove the left-hander's second pitch of the game into the lower seats in the left-field corner for his first home run since July 31. Hairston led off a game with a home run for the fourth time in his career, the first since June 6, 2001, with Baltimore.

"Obviously, I want to contribute a lot more than I have. I haven't felt like I've really been doing my part," said Hairston, who came to the Cubs in the trade for Sosa.

"Me and Sammy are completely different players, and I think Sammy and the Cubs both needed a new start and I just happened to be the guy who was available. I know he wanted to play with Miguel Tejada, so I hope he's happy and that it'll work out for both teams."

Neifi Perez followed Hairston's homer with a single, took third on a double by Ramirez and scored on a groundout by Jason Dubois. Barrett made it 4-0 in the fourth with a two-run homer.

Maddux, a 14-time Gold Glove winner, committed a throwing error on J.D. Drew's dribbler to the left of the mound with one out in the fourth and gave up a single to Jeff Kent. Saenz followed with a two-run double off the glove of center fielder Patterson just in front of the fence in left-center.

Ramirez, who set a Cubs franchise record for third baseman last season with a career-high 36 homers, hit a solo shot in the fifth that made it 5-2. He was 3-for-4, giving him 10 hits in his last 21 at-bats following a prolonged slump.

Lee, who entered Monday leading the NL in batting average, home runs, RBI, total bases, extra-base hits, on-base percentage and slugging percentage, was 0-for-5. Last season Lee was 3-for-23 against the Dodgers with no RBI.

Notes

  • Maddux needs 43 strikeouts to become the ninth pitcher with at least 300 wins and 3,000 strikeouts.
  • Dodgers CF Milton Bradley was unavailable for anything except pinch running after spraining the flexor tendon in his right ring finger while popping up in the ninth inning Sunday at Arizona. He is to have an MRI on Tuesday.
  • Patterson, who had been splitting time with Hairston in the leadoff spot until last week, was bumped to eighth for the first time this season and went 2-for-4.
  • LHP John Koronka will be promoted from Triple-A Iowa on Wednesday and make his major-league debut for the Cubs in place of injured RHP Mark Prior, on the DL with a compression fracture near his elbow.
 
Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
CBSSports Facebook Google Plus
COMMENTS
Conversation powered by Livefyre
Catcher Michael Barrett accounts for one of Chicago's NL-leading 65 homers in the fourth inning.   (AP)
Catcher Michael Barrett accounts for one of Chicago's NL-leading 65 homers in the fourth inning. (AP)

Players of the Game
Los Angeles

O. Saenz
AB 4
R 1
H 2
HR 1
RBI 3
Chicago

A. Ramirez
AB 4
R 1
H 3
HR 1
RBI 1
 

Related Video

December 19, 2014
Boomer and Carton's Week 16 NFL Picks (4:10)
December 18, 2014
Expectations for 2015 Titans
(1:22)
December 18, 2014
Expectations for 2015 Jaguars
(1:39)
December 18, 2014
NFL Defensive Player of the Year predictions
(0:44)
Chicago Cubs
Jerry Hairston Jr., 2B4111101 .262
Neifi Perez, SS5110013 .304
Derrek Lee, 1B5000011 .356
Aramis Ramirez, 3B4131010 .256
Jason Dubois, LF4011001 .258
    Todd Wellemeyer, P0000000 .333
    Will Ohman, P0000000 .000
    Ryan Dempster, P0000000 .077
Jeromy Burnitz, RF4010003 .266
Corey Patterson, CF4120001 .279
Michael Barrett, C3112101 .279
Greg Maddux, P2000021 .143
    Todd Hollandsworth, LF1000000 .202
Totals3651052512 
Batting
2B - Aramis Ramirez (13, Alvarez), Corey Patterson (5, Alvarez)
HR - Jerry Hairston Jr. (1, Alvarez), Aramis Ramirez (10, Alvarez), Michael Barrett (5, Alvarez)
SH - Greg Maddux (3)
RBI - Jerry Hairston Jr. (4), Aramis Ramirez (26), Jason Dubois (18), Michael Barrett 2 (20)
SB - Corey Patterson (6, 2nd base off Alvarez/Phillips)
Team LOB - 7
Fielding
DP - Perez-Hairston-Lee, Perez-Hairston-Lee
E - Greg Maddux (2, wild throw)
Chicago Cubs
Greg Maddux (W,3-3) 6521030 4.08
Todd Wellemeyer (H,1) 1.2000210 1.20
Will Ohman (H,2) 0.1000000 2.79
Ryan Dempster (S,5) 1111021 5.06
Pitches-Strikes - Greg Maddux 83-52, Todd Wellemeyer 27-13, Will Ohman 2-1, Ryan Dempster 19-12
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Greg Maddux 9-6, Todd Wellemeyer 2-1, Will Ohman 1-0, Ryan Dempster 1-0
Batters Faced - Greg Maddux 23, Todd Wellemeyer 6, Will Ohman 1, Ryan Dempster 4
Los Angeles Dodgers
Cesar Izturis, SS3020100 .344
Jayson Werth, RF4000003 .217
J.D. Drew, CF4100012 .256
Jeff Kent, 2B4120001 .267
Olmedo Saenz, 1B4123001 .345
Ricky Ledee, LF4000031 .297
Antonio Perez, 3B4000011 .474
Jason Phillips, C3000000 .270
Wilson Alvarez, P1000010 .000
   a- Hee Seop Choi, PH1000000 .262
    Scott Erickson, P0000000 .154
    Duaner Sanchez, P0000000 .000
   b- Oscar Robles, PH0000100 .200
    Dennis Houlton, P0000000 .000
Totals32363269 
a-lined out for Alvarez in the 5th
b-walked for Sanchez in the 8th
Batting
2B - Olmedo Saenz (9, Maddux)
HR - Olmedo Saenz (5, Dempster)
RBI - Olmedo Saenz 3 (23)
SB - Cesar Izturis (4, 2nd base off Maddux/Barrett)
Team LOB - 4
Los Angeles Dodgers
Wilson Alvarez (L,1-3) 5955143 5.79
Scott Erickson 2100110 6.75
Duaner Sanchez 1000000 2.73
Dennis Houlton 1000000 7.41
Pitches-Strikes - Wilson Alvarez 72-45, Scott Erickson 34-23, Duaner Sanchez 7-4, Dennis Houlton 11-7
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Wilson Alvarez 4-7, Scott Erickson 4-1, Duaner Sanchez 1-2, Dennis Houlton 2-1
Batters Faced - Wilson Alvarez 25, Scott Erickson 8, Duaner Sanchez 3, Dennis Houlton 3
Game Information
Attendance - 44255
Game Time - 2:39
Temperature - 71
Umpires - Home - Phil Cuzzi, First Base - Ed Rapuano, Second Base - Jerry Crawford, Third Base - C.B. Bucknor