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Cubs' Zambrano, Barrett come to blows as Braves take win

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports
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CHICAGO -- Now the Chicago Cubs are really getting beat up -- by each other.

Carlos Zambrano and catcher Michael Barrett shoved each other in the dugout, then the pitcher busted his teammate's lip in the clubhouse so badly that Barrett wound up in a hospital.

Oh yeah, the Cubs lost again, 8-5 to the Atlanta Braves on Friday.

"I only have so many players that I can play. You know?" manager Lou Piniella said during a postgame media session with reporters that escalated into shouting. "And it's about time some of them start playing like major leaguers! Or, get somebody else in here that can catch the damn ball or run the bases properly! All right? That's all I can say!"

Piniella left the interview room, muttering a profanity along the way. It wasn't clear if he was singling out Barrett, who had a baserunning blunder earlier in the week, or referring to the whole team.

Both players will be disciplined Saturday, according to the manager.

"These things shouldn't happen," Piniella said earlier in the session. "Go fight the other team if you have to. Amongst yourselves? It happens, but it really shouldn't."

Atlanta had just scored five runs in the top of the fifth to increase its lead to 7-1. Jeff Francoeur's two-run double made it 4-1 and, with runners on first and second, Barrett allowed a passed ball and threw wildly to third for an error that let Scott Thorman score. Pitcher Kyle Davies (3-3) and Kelly Johnson followed with RBI doubles.

Zambrano (5-5) was seen pointing at his head and yelling at the catcher in the dugout before the bottom half, while Barrett pointed toward the field. There was shoving and some slaps.

Zambrano cocked his right fist as they were being separated. Piniella said Zambrano was upset about the passed ball, and the manager along with several players walked the pitcher back to the clubhouse. Piniella told Zambrano to take a shower and go home, then returned to the dugout.

Moments later, a clubhouse attendant could be seen telling Piniella something. Derrek Lee jumped up and headed into the tunnel, and Piniella and pitching coach Larry Rothschild followed.

"Michael went up there," Piniella said. "I was watching the game."

Piniella also banished Barrett, who was being examined after the game at a hospital.

"You don't want to see people fight one another on your own team," he said. "You don't want to see it. You really don't. And at the same time, you don't like to see some of the silliness that's going on the field.

Scott Eyre relieved Zambrano, who was pitching on his 26th birthday and allowed a career-high 13 hits in five innings. Koyie Hill, who had just been called up from Triple-A Iowa, replaced Barrett.

"Your whole family's watching, and that's the last thing you want," Chicago's Aramis Ramirez said.

General manager Jim Hendry, who was on a scouting trip, said Barrett received stitches to close the cut.

"As an organization, we're very disappointed about the incident between Michael and Carlos," assistant general manager Randy Bush said. "They're two highly competitive, caring individuals, who put a lot into the game. Frustrations boiled over. It can happen. ... We're very disappointed. I think it shows the level of frustration among the players, the coaches, the general manager, the front office."

Atlanta felt sorry for the Cubs.

"In baseball, you never want to see that," Francoeur said. "Even on the other team, no matter how bad stuff is. That's an unfortunate incident but they're professionals and I'm sure they'll make up and move on."

Davies allowed one run and six hits in seven innings for the Braves, who had a season-high 20 hits. Davis, Johnson, Edgar Renteria and Willie Harris had three apiece.

Chicago has lost nine of 11 and is 22-30 -- not exactly the start the Cubs were looking for after spending $300 million to bring in Piniella along with free agents Alfonso Soriano, Ted Lilly and Jason Marquis.

Chicago committed several baserunning blunders -- one by Barrett -- Tuesday in a 9-4 loss to Florida that Piniella had said "might be our worst game of the year." A day later, the players held a lengthy pregame meeting, and Piniella and team executives had one of their own. Then, the Marlins beat them 9-0.

It was just as bad Friday.

Johnson sent a pop to shallow left on the game's second pitch and it fell for a single as shortstop Ryan Theriot seemed to lose it in the sun. With one out, Ramirez bobbled Renteria's grounder to third and had to settle for getting the runner at first instead of a possible double play. Brian McCann then singled to put the Braves ahead to stay.

Cubs right fielder Matt Murton dropped a fly in the fourth, allowing another run to score.

"We're a bad team right now," Lee said.

Although they won for the third time in four games, the Braves got some more bad news on third baseman Chipper Jones. He'll go on the 15-day disabled list with a bruised right hand on Saturday, manager Bobby Cox said. Jones has been experiencing pain in both hands since a baserunning collision on May 11 and had missed his eighth straight game.

Notes

  • Ramirez hit a two-run homer off Peter Moylan in the eighth and Jacque Jones homered in the ninth. A fan ran onto the field as Ramirez's shot headed toward the seats.
  • The Braves are expected to purchase the contract of INF Yunel Escobar from Triple-A Richmond on Saturday.
  • Cubs OF Cliff Floyd was a late scratch because of minor inflammation in the cartilage of his ribcage, so Murton started in right.
  • The Cubs placed backup C Henry Blanco on the 15-day DL with a herniated disk in his neck and recalled Hill.
 
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.
 
 
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Carlos Zambrano, who gives up 13 hits, later takes his frustration into the dugout vs. Michael Barrett.  (AP)
Carlos Zambrano, who gives up 13 hits, later takes his frustration into the dugout vs. Michael Barrett. (AP)

Players of the Game
Atlanta

K. Davies
IP 7.0
H 6
ER 1
BB 1
K 2
Chicago

D. Lee
AB 3
R 1
H 3
HR 1
RBI 2
 
Atlanta Braves
Kelly Johnson, 2B6131002 .295
Willie Harris, LF6030004 .397
Edgar Renteria, SS5230102 .335
Brian McCann, C5121005 .278
Andruw Jones, CF5010004 .229
Jeff Francoeur, RF5023002 .294
Scott Thorman, 1B4110101 .233
Pete Orr, 3B3220003 .225
   a- Chris Woodward, PH-3B2000010 .235
Kyle Davies, P4131001 .211
    Peter Moylan, P0000000 .000
   b- Matt Diaz, PH1000000 .342
    Bob Wickman, P0000000 .000
Totals46820621  
a-fouled out for Orr in the 7th
b-grounded out for Moylan in the 9th
Batting
2B - Kelly Johnson (13, Zambrano), Edgar Renteria (15, Eyre), Andruw Jones (15, Zambrano), Jeff Francoeur (16, Zambrano), Scott Thorman (10, Zambrano), Kyle Davies (1, Zambrano)
RBI - Kelly Johnson (30), Brian McCann (26), Jeff Francoeur 3 (41), Kyle Davies (4)
2-OUT RBI - Kelly Johnson (22), Brian McCann (10), Jeff Francoeur (24), Kyle Davies (4)
Team LOB - 13
Fielding
DP - Johnson-Thorman, Renteria-Johnson-Thorman, Johnson-Renteria-Thorman
E - Kelly Johnson (5, Misplayed grounder)
Atlanta Braves
Kyle Davies (W,3-3) 7611121 4.99
Peter Moylan 1230001 2.49
Bob Wickman 1211001 3.12
WP - Kyle Davies (1)
Pitches-Strikes - Kyle Davies 107-68, Peter Moylan 18-13, Bob Wickman 14-9
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Kyle Davies 10-7, Peter Moylan 2-2, Bob Wickman 1-1
Batters Faced - Kyle Davies 26, Peter Moylan 6, Bob Wickman 4
Chicago Cubs
Alfonso Soriano, LF4110002 .289
Ryan Theriot, SS-2B4110001 .273
Derrek Lee, 1B3132000 .362
Aramis Ramirez, 3B4122012 .294
Matt Murton, RF4000002 .266
Michael Barrett, C2000001 .241
    Koyie Hill, C2000000 .000
Jacque Jones, CF3111110 .247
Mark DeRosa, 2B3010001 .252
    Angel Guzman, P0000000 .000
   a- Angel Pagan, PH1010000 .302
Carlos Zambrano, P0000000 .250
   b- Daryle Ward, PH1000001 .278
    Scott Eyre, P0000000 .000
    Cesar Izturis, SS2000001 .254
Totals33510512  
a-hit a bunt single for Guzman in the 9th
b-flied out for Zambrano in the 5th
Batting
HR - Derrek Lee (5, Davies), Aramis Ramirez (13, Moylan), Jacque Jones (2, Wickman)
SF - Derrek Lee (1)
SH - Carlos Zambrano (4)
RBI - Derrek Lee 2 (32), Aramis Ramirez 2 (38), Jacque Jones (17)
2-OUT RBI - Aramis Ramirez 2 (14)
SB - Ryan Theriot (8, 2nd base off Moylan/McCann)
Team LOB - 4
Fielding
Outfield Assists - Alfonso Soriano 1
DP - DeRosa-Theriot-Lee
PB - Michael Barrett (7)
E - Michael Barrett (5, Throwing), Matt Murton (3, Dropped fly)
Chicago Cubs
Carlos Zambrano (L,5-5) 51376200 5.62
Scott Eyre 2511000 7.85
Angel Guzman 2200010 3.56
Pitches-Strikes - Carlos Zambrano 97-64, Scott Eyre 35-23, Angel Guzman 26-18
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Carlos Zambrano 7-7, Angel Guzman 2-3
Batters Faced - Carlos Zambrano 29, Scott Eyre 11, Angel Guzman 8
Game Information
Attendance - 39523
Game Time - 2:58
Temperature - 75
Umpires - Home - Mark Wegner, First Base - Bruce Froemming, Second Base - James Hoye, Third Base - Brian Runge