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Milwaukee at Chicago

Scoreboard
Milwaukee (2-0) «1002110128140
Chi. Cubs (0-2)000100100282

Brewers' bats manhandle Lilly, Cubs with 14-hit effort

CBSSports.com wire reports
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CHICAGO -- Incessant talk of the 100-year anniversary of the Chicago Cubs' last World Series title already has grown old and really has nothing to do with their 0-2 start in 2008.

Blame the early stumble on the Milwaukee Brewers and their talented young lineup, one featuring speed and power. And one that got a lift Wednesday from ex-Cub Jason Kendall.

"It's certainly not a good start," Chicago manager Lou Piniella said after Wednesday's 8-2 beating from the Brewers. "I told our baseball team they better be ready to play. I meant it. I wasn't joking around."

Piniella said Monday's 4-3, 10-inning loss to Milwaukee in the opener was a matter of getting beat.

"Today we didn't play well. One of the things we need to do here is play good defensive baseball and not give away runs," he said.

During Wednesday's loss, the Cubs made two errors, watched Milwaukee steal three bases and heard some boos at Wrigley Field. And as soon as it was over, Piniella announced he already was making a lineup change by moving Alfonso Soriano -- who is 0-for-9 -- back into the leadoff spot from No. 2 in the order.

"At this point whatever will make the team better I'm available," Soriano said.

The Brewers got some strong pitching from Jeff Suppan, who held Chicago to two runs and six hits in 6 1/3 innings. Rickie Weeks homered on the game's first pitch and Kendall, who played 57 games for the Cubs last season, reached base five straight times.

"He's come in and worked hard to learn our pitching staff," Milwaukee manager Ned Yost said of the catcher. "What I really like about him is that his focus is on that pitcher and whatever he gives us offensively is gravy."

Kendall's gravy included a single, two doubles, two RBI, a walk and a stolen base. Ryan Braun also had three hits in Milwaukee's 14-hit attack.

The Cubs were 8½ games back of the Brewers in late June last season after a slow start before overtaking Milwaukee to win the NL Central.

"We don't want to put ourselves in the position where we have to go from last to first" like last year, said Cubs' shortstop Ryan Theriot, who will flip with Soriano in the batting order. "I don't think anybody is pushing the panic button."

Yost will take the early two-game cushion.

"It doesn't matter when you play," he said. "We lost the division by two games last year."

Piniella said his team isn't feeling the pressure already because of the high expectations.

"Pressing for what? We've only played a couple of games," Piniella said. "The concern is that we start playing better baseball and that's not even a concern - that's what we need to do."

Suppan (1-0) gave up Derek Lee's home run leading off the fourth on a 41-degree day and left after allowing Geovany Soto's home in the seventh.

Suppan also credited Kendall's work behind the plate.

"I think there have been quite a few I've worked with and as far as game calling, he's up there," Suppan said. "For the most part I was able to stay out of the middle and stay out of the big inning."

Salomon Torres relieved Suppan and, after consecutive one-out singles by Felix Pie and Mike Fontenot, retired Ryan Theriot on a flyout and struck out Soriano.

"It's only two games, not like a month or a month and a half," Soriano said of his early struggles. "I know who I am and I believe in myself."

Chicago starter Ted Lilly (0-1) gave up four runs and five hits in 4 2/3 innings.

Milwaukee took a 3-0 lead in the fourth when Braun doubled off Aramis Ramirez's glove at third, Bill Hall had an RBI single and Corey Hart delivered an RBI double.

Lee's first homer got a run back for the Cubs in the bottom half but Milwaukee drove out Lilly in the fifth when Kendall doubled, and Lilly hit Prince Fielder in the side with a two-out pitch. Braun greeted Kevin Hart with an RBI single for a 4-1 lead.

Fans started to boo the Cubs in the sixth when Milwaukee scored without a hit thanks to two walks, three stolen bases and a Soto's error.

Notes

  • Part of Carlos Zambrano's problems with cramping is related to a low potassium level, Piniella said. Zambrano had to leave in the seventh Monday with a cramp in his right forearm. He's had similar problems with cramps in past seasons. Zambrano said he would have to drink more water. Piniella said his ace will have to eat more bananas. And the Cubs also would like Zambrano to cut back on his caffeine intake.
  • Weeks' leadoff homer was his seventh.
 
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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The Brewers' Rickie Weeks begins the offensive assault on the Cubs with a leadoff home run.  (AP)
The Brewers' Rickie Weeks begins the offensive assault on the Cubs with a leadoff home run. (AP)

Players of the Game
Milwaukee

J. Kendall
AB 4
R 1
H 3
HR 0
RBI 2
Chicago

D. Lee
AB 4
R 1
H 2
HR 1
RBI 1
 
Milwaukee Brewers
Rickie Weeks, 2B6111016 .111
Gabe Kapler, CF-LF5011002 .200
Prince Fielder, 1B3010000 .286
Ryan Braun, LF5131012 .400
    David Riske, P0000000 .000
Bill Hall, 3B5111025 .222
Corey Hart, RF4111123 .250
J.J. Hardy, SS5110015 .111
Jeff Suppan, P3000022 .000
    Salomon Torres, P0000000 .000
   a- Joe Dillon, PH11100001.000
    Tony Gwynn Jr., CF1110000 .750
Jason Kendall, C4132100 .500
Totals42814729  
a-doubled for Torres in the 8th
Batting
2B - Ryan Braun (1, Lilly), Corey Hart (2, Lilly), Joe Dillon (1, Pignatiello), Jason Kendall 2 (2, Lilly, Howry)
HR - Rickie Weeks (1, Lilly)
RBI - Rickie Weeks (1), Gabe Kapler (1), Ryan Braun (2), Bill Hall (1), Corey Hart (3), Jason Kendall 2 (2)
2-OUT RBI - Ryan Braun (1), Jason Kendall 2 (2)
SB - Corey Hart 2 (2, 2nd base off Hart/Soto, 3rd base off Hart/Soto), Jason Kendall (1, 2nd base off Hart/Soto)
Team LOB - 11
Fielding
DP - Hall-Weeks-Fielder, Kendall-Hardy
Milwaukee Brewers
Jeff Suppan (W,1-0) 6.1622222 2.84
Salomon Torres (H,1) 0.2200010 0.00
David Riske 2000130 0.00
Pitches-Strikes - Jeff Suppan 108-62, Salomon Torres 21-9, David Riske 35-20
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Jeff Suppan 7-8
Batters Faced - Jeff Suppan 25, Salomon Torres 4, David Riske 7
Chicago Cubs
Ryan Theriot, SS4020002 .222
Alfonso Soriano, LF4000014 .000
Derrek Lee, 1B4121000 .333
Aramis Ramirez, 3B3000101 .000
Kosuke Fukudome, RF3000120 .500
Mark DeRosa, 2B2010001 .200
    Kevin Hart, P0000000 .000
    Michael Wuertz, P0000000 .000
   a- Ronny Cedeno, PH1000000 .000
    Carmen Pignatiello, P0000000 .000
    Bob Howry, P0000000 .000
   b- Daryle Ward, PH0000100 .000
Geovany Soto, C4111022 .167
Felix Pie, CF4010011 .250
Ted Lilly, P1000000 .000
    Mike Fontenot, 2B3010001 .250
Totals3328236  
a-fouled out for Wuertz in the 7th
b-walked for Howry in the 9th
Batting
2B - Derrek Lee (1, Suppan), Mark DeRosa (1, Suppan)
HR - Derrek Lee (1, Suppan), Geovany Soto (1, Suppan)
RBI - Derrek Lee (1), Geovany Soto (1)
SB - Mike Fontenot (1, 2nd base off Torres/Kendall)
CS - Aramis Ramirez (1, 2nd base by Suppan/Kendall)
Team LOB - 7
Fielding
E - Aramis Ramirez (1, Misplayed grounder), Geovany Soto (1, Throwing)
Chicago Cubs
Ted Lilly (L,0-1) 4.2544041 7.71
Kevin Hart 1.1110220 0.00
Michael Wuertz 1300020 0.00
Carmen Pignatiello 0.2211000 13.50
Bob Howry 1.1322010 11.57
HBP - Fielder (by Ted Lilly), Fielder (by Carmen Pignatiello)
WP - Kevin Hart (1), Carmen Pignatiello (1)
Pitches-Strikes - Ted Lilly 74-53, Kevin Hart 31-9, Michael Wuertz 21-15, Carmen Pignatiello 20-11, Bob Howry 30-20
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Ted Lilly 3-8, Kevin Hart 1-1, Carmen Pignatiello 2-0
Batters Faced - Ted Lilly 21, Kevin Hart 7, Michael Wuertz 6, Carmen Pignatiello 5, Bob Howry 7
Game Information
Attendance - 39468
Game Time - 3:23
Temperature - 41
Umpires - Home - Field Culbreth, First Base - Jim Reynolds, Second Base - Tim Timmons, Third Base - Gary Cederstrom