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New York at Chicago

Scoreboard
N.Y. Mets (10-9)000001000150
Chi. Cubs (14-6) «00030014x8140

Cedeno's grand slam highlights Lilly's first win for red-hot Cubs

CBSSports.com wire reports
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CHICAGO -- A day after Ronny Cedeno told reporters the Chicago Cubs are "thinking about the World Series," he recanted.

"I'm going to take it back," Cedeno said. "I go too fast."

Cedeno swung as if he wants to help the Cubs get there, hitting a grand slam and driving in five runs in surging Chicago's 8-1 win over the New York Mets on Tuesday for its 13th victory in 16 games.

Ted Lilly won for the first time in five starts, helping the Cubs to their best start over 20 games since the days of Don Kessinger and Rick Reuschel.

The Cubs, who a season ago started 7-13, had 14 hits and improved to 14-6, their best record at this point since 1975.

Cedeno, who almost was cut at the end of spring training, has started the past two games with Ryan Theriot, the usual shortstop, out because of back pain.

Cedeno drove in Chicago's first run in a three-run fourth, then hit his first career grand slam in the eighth against Jorge Sosa for a 7-1 lead. Cedeno, who has 10 RBI in his past four games, also had a key hit in Monday night's win -- which led to the giddy talk of a World Series, something the Cubs have not won in 100 years.

"As long as he doesn't talk 'World Series,' I'm happy," Cubs manager Lou Piniella said.

The left-handed Lilly (1-3) retired his first 10 batters and lowered his ERA from 9.16 to 7.30 after allowing a run, four hits and four walks over six innings. He struck out four and combined with three relievers on a five-hitter.

"You hear guys talking, whether they went 0-for-4 or whatever the case was, they're talking about us winning games," said Lilly, who 15 games a season ago. "That made it a little bit easier for me to swallow given the fact that I was going out there and not giving us quality outings. We were winning games that I wasn't pitching. That made my load a little bit easier to bear."

New York was outscored 15-2 in the two-game series and has lost three in a row following a five-game winning streak.

Slugger David Wright said everyone on the team is accountable.

"Offensively now we're just not clicking," Wright said. "A few of our regulars weren't in there today, but we just can't get anything going offensively right now. We need the guys at the top of the order to get on base and we need the guys in the middle of the order to drive them in. It's not one guy or another."

Manager Willie Randolph bemoaned the lack of bats and the Mets decision-making on defense.

"There were some lack-of-focus kind of plays. You can't make mistakes like that," Randolph said. "Our bullpen is struggling a little bit right now and in this series, if you give them extra outs like that, it makes it very difficult. The Cubs are playing well and have swung the bats well all series. But when you give them opportunities like that, you end up paying for it to say the least."

Nelson Figueroa (1-1) gave up three runs, seven hits and five walks -- one intentional -- in five-plus innings.

Chicago loaded the bases with no outs in the second but Cedeno took a called third strike and Henry Blanco grounded into a double play.

After Cedeno's go-ahead hit in the fourth, Blanco was intentionally walked and Figueroa was late covering first base on a grounder to second that Lilly beat out for a single.

Figueroa blamed himself, but Randolph said first baseman Carlos Delgado misread the play and should have stayed closer to the bag.

Reed Johnson, starting in left field because Alfonso Soriano is on the 15-day disabled list, followed with a two-run single. Mark DeRosa made it 4-1 with an RBI grounder in the seventh.

The Mets might have gotten out of the eighth before Cedeno came up, but Jose Reyes chose to throw home rather than start what appeared to be a tailor-made, inning-ending 6-4-3 double play.

"We talk about that play all the time," Randolph said. "If the ball is hit slow, you go to home plate. If it's hard, you have to be able to react and go to second base for the double play. He didn't make the right call there."

Notes

  • The Mets rested 2B Luis Castillo (sore knee) and C Brian Schneider (bruised forearm).
  • With no more position players available, pitcher Jason Marquis pinch hit for the Cubs in the eighth.
  • Brady Clark hit an RBI grounder with the bases loaded in the sixth for the Mets run.
 
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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A 15-game winner in '07, Ted Lilly finally gets in the win column thanks to Ronny Cedeno's grand slam.  (AP)
A 15-game winner in '07, Ted Lilly finally gets in the win column thanks to Ronny Cedeno's grand slam. (AP)

Players of the Game
Chicago

R. Cedeno
AB 5
R 2
H 2
HR 1
RBI 5
Chicago

K. Fukudome
AB 3
R 2
H 3
HR 0
RBI 0
 
New York Mets
Jose Reyes, SS4000112 .280
Angel Pagan, RF4010012 .308
David Wright, 3B3000100 .329
Carlos Beltran, CF2100210 .215
Carlos Delgado, 1B4010023 .208
Damion Easley, 2B4010003 .276
Brady Clark, LF3011000 .250
    Joe Smith, P0000000 .000
    Pedro Feliciano, P0000000 .000
    Jorge Sosa, P0000000 .000
   a- Marlon Anderson, PH0000100 .067
Raul Casanova, C4010002 .211
Nelson Figueroa, P2000011 .000
    Scott Schoeneweis, P0000000 .000
    Endy Chavez, LF2000001 .167
Totals3215156  
a-walked for Sosa in the 9th
Batting
2B - Angel Pagan (7, Lilly)
RBI - Brady Clark (1)
Team LOB - 9
Fielding
DP - Reyes-Easley-Delgado
New York Mets
Nelson Figueroa (L,1-1) 5733520 4.05
Scott Schoeneweis 0.2000100 3.38
Joe Smith 0.2311010 2.61
Pedro Feliciano0000100 2.08
Jorge Sosa 1.2444101 7.24
IBB - Blanco by Nelson Figueroa, Soto by Pedro Feliciano
WP - Pedro Feliciano (1)
Pitches-Strikes - Nelson Figueroa 92-53, Scott Schoeneweis 9-4, Joe Smith 24-15, Pedro Feliciano 4-0, Jorge Sosa 34-25
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Nelson Figueroa 3-9, Scott Schoeneweis 2-0, Jorge Sosa 2-3
Batters Faced - Nelson Figueroa 26, Scott Schoeneweis 3, Joe Smith 5, Pedro Feliciano 1, Jorge Sosa 10
Chicago Cubs
Reed Johnson, LF4012113 .339
Felix Pie, CF5020002 .206
Derrek Lee, 1B4110103 .353
Aramis Ramirez, 3B4110103 .280
Kosuke Fukudome, RF3230200 .357
Mark DeRosa, 2B4111105 .309
Ronny Cedeno, SS5225027 .345
Henry Blanco, C2110101 .357
   a- Daryle Ward, PH0000000 .077
   b- Geovany Soto, PH-C1010100 .317
Ted Lilly, P2010000 .200
   c- Mike Fontenot, PH0000000 .206
    Bob Howry, P0000000 .000
   d- Matt Murton, PH1000003 .111
    Carlos Marmol, P0000000 .000
   e- Jason Marquis, PH1000001 .250
    Kevin Hart, P0000000 .000
Totals36814883  
a-announced for Blanco in the 7th
b-was walked intentionally for Ward in the 7th
c-hit a sacrifice bunt for Lilly in the 6th
d-hit into fielder's choice for Howry in the 7th
e-popped out for Marmol in the 8th
Batting
2B - Kosuke Fukudome (5, Smith), Ronny Cedeno (3, Figueroa)
HR - Ronny Cedeno (1, Sosa)
SH - Mike Fontenot (1)
RBI - Reed Johnson 2 (9), Mark DeRosa (14), Ronny Cedeno 5 (13)
2-OUT RBI - Reed Johnson 2 (3), Ronny Cedeno 5 (9)
Team LOB - 13
Chicago Cubs
Ted Lilly (W,1-3) 6411440 7.30
Bob Howry (H,4) 1000000 6.55
Carlos Marmol (H,7) 1000020 1.88
Kevin Hart 1100100 3.29
Pitches-Strikes - Ted Lilly 107-64, Bob Howry 10-7, Carlos Marmol 18-11, Kevin Hart 22-15
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Ted Lilly 6-8, Bob Howry 2-1, Kevin Hart 3-0
Batters Faced - Ted Lilly 26, Bob Howry 3, Carlos Marmol 3, Kevin Hart 5
Game Information
Attendance - 40503
Game Time - 3:15
Temperature - 68
Umpires - Home - Eric Cooper, First Base - Marty Foster, Second Base - Derryl Cousins, Third Base - Angel Hernandez