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Los Angeles at Chicago

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L.A. Dodgers (26-26)0001000000170
Chi. Cubs (32-21) «0000000011271

Soriano's single in 10th secures Cubs' sweep over Dodgers

CBSSports.com wire reports
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CHICAGO -- Criticized for his defense earlier in the week after he misplayed a fly ball that cost the Chicago Cubs a win, Alfonso Soriano responded Wednesday night with a hit that sent his team to victory.

"He has that ability just to stay up and keep on trucking, performing," Cubs manager Lou Piniella said after Soriano's 10th-inning single gave Chicago a 2-1 win over the Los Angeles Dodgers and completed a three-game sweep.

"I was happy for him. A big clutch hit and it got us the win."

Trailing 1-0 in the bottom of the ninth, the Cubs tied it against Dodgers closer Takashi Saito on Geovany Soto's bases-loaded sacrifice fly.

In the 10th, pinch-hitter Mike Fontenot doubled with one out off Chan Ho Park (1-1) and scored on Soriano's single to left. Bob Howry (1-2) pitched the top of the inning for the win.

Soriano lost a fly ball in the sun with two outs in the ninth inning Sunday at Pittsburgh, allowing the Pirates to tie a game they would eventually win.

Maybe that's why his teammates seemed extra enthusiastic when they came racing out of the dugout Wednesday night to mob him.

"It is great. They know that I am working very hard every day to be better and better," Soriano said. "I love what I do and I believe in myself all the time."

Dodgers starter Derek Lowe, winless since April 23, was on his way to a victory after pitching seven shutout innings with two walks and five strikeouts. Jonathan Broxton struck out the side in the eighth.

But Saito, who blew his third save in 11 chances, walked Ryan Theriot and Aramis Ramirez in the ninth before Kosuke Fukudome reached on an infield single to load the bases when Dodgers first baseman James Loney made a nice diving stop on his high hopper. Fukudome was ruled safe at first after Saito raced over to cover the bag and take the flip from Loney.

"I just missed the base," Saito said through a translator.

"He never got to the base. I couldn't see that from the dugout. I thought the ball beat him and that's what my contention was, but he never got to the base," said Dodgers manager Joe Torre, who went to first to question the call.

Soto then hit the sacrifice fly to tie the game and pinch-runner Ronny Cedeno advanced to third before Saito retired Mark DeRosa on a fly ball to end the inning.

Lowe knew what Saito was feeling after letting the win slip away.

"I really think that if anybody can understand about losing and frustrations, it's me and that's what makes it easier," said Lowe, a former closer. "You root for him and games like that are going to happen. I've blown a lot of games in my career, so I understand the feeling."

The Dodgers, who scored one run in each of the three games at Wrigley Field, used a bout of two-out wildness by Carlos Zambrano in the fourth inning to score on a bases-loaded walk.

Zambrano allowed six hits, walked four and had a costly hit batter during his season-high 130-pitch outing over eight innings and left trailing 1-0.

"I felt good, felt strong to finish the eighth inning," Zambrano said.

Zambrano gave up two-out singles to Russell Martin and Loney in the fourth before hitting Matt Kemp in the back to load the bases. On a 3-2 pitch, he walked Blake DeWitt to force in the run.

"I don't know what happened. I lost my command and it's weird," Zambrano said.

Andre Ethier and Martin singled with two outs in the eighth and when Theriot made an error on Loney's grounder to shortstop, the Dodgers had the bases loaded again.

Piniella visited the mound but left Zambrano in before he struck out Kemp with his final pitch of the night.

"It was a cool night and we've been watching his pitch counts very carefully all year," Piniella said. "So next time he's out there, we'll shorten him up if we need to.'

Zambrano, who was 4-for-5 at the plate against Pittsburgh in his previous start, went 0-for-2, striking out twice against Lowe.

Notes

  • Lowe pitched a one-hit shutout against the Cubs at Wrigley Field on Aug. 31, 2005. The lone hit was an infield single by leadoff hitter Jerry Hairston in the first.
  • Dodgers 2B Jeff Kent, who was out of the lineup Tuesday with back spasms, missed his second straight game.
  • Dodgers INF Tony Abreu underwent arthroscopic surgery on his right hip Wednesday in Colorado. He will be out at least three months.
  • The pitch count was the second highest of Zambrano's career. He threw 136 against the Phillies in May 2005.
 
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 Cubbies don't just earn a dramatic win over the Dodgers, they also claim the three-game sweep.  (AP)
The Cubbies don't just earn a dramatic win over the Dodgers, they also claim the three-game sweep. (AP)

Players of the Game
Chicago

A. Soriano
AB 5
R 0
H 2
HR 0
RBI 1
Los Angeles

R. Martin
AB 5
R 1
H 3
HR 0
RBI 0
 
Los Angeles Dodgers
Juan Pierre, LF4000121 .276
Luis Maza, 2B5010011 .360
Andre Ethier, RF4010111 .307
Russell Martin, C5130002 .317
James Loney, 1B5010012 .272
Matt Kemp, CF2010113 .312
Blake Dewitt, 3B3001101 .294
Chin-lung Hu, SS4000004 .170
Derek Lowe, P3000001 .227
    Jonathan Broxton, P0000000 .000
   a- Mark Sweeney, PH0000100 .098
    Takashi Saito, P0000000 .000
    Chan Ho Park, P0000000 .000
Totals3517156  
a-walked for Broxton in the 9th
Batting
RBI - Blake Dewitt (25)
2-OUT RBI - Blake Dewitt (22)
Team LOB - 10
Fielding
DP - Lowe-Maza-Loney, Dewitt-Maza-Loney
Los Angeles Dodgers
Derek Lowe 7400250 4.52
Jonathan Broxton (H,6) 1000030 4.03
Takashi Saito (BS,3) 1111200 1.99
Chan Ho Park (L,1-1) 0.1211000 2.37
Pitches-Strikes - Derek Lowe 91-56, Jonathan Broxton 13-9, Takashi Saito 37-18, Chan Ho Park 13-9
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Derek Lowe 8-6
Batters Faced - Derek Lowe 25, Jonathan Broxton 3, Takashi Saito 6, Chan Ho Park 3
Chicago Cubs
Alfonso Soriano, LF5021020 .283
Ryan Theriot, SS3110110 .311
Derrek Lee, 1B4000002 .294
Aramis Ramirez, 3B1000300 .302
    Ronny Cedeno, PR-2B0000000 .321
Kosuke Fukudome, RF4020002 .305
Geovany Soto, C3011002 .305
Mark DeRosa, 2B-3B4000015 .308
Reed Johnson, CF4000010 .253
Carlos Zambrano, P2000020 .324
   a- Micah Hoffpauir, PH1000010 .364
    Jose Ascanio, P0000000 .000
    Bob Howry, P0000000 .000
   b- Mike Fontenot, PH1110000 .250
Totals3227248  
a-struck out for Zambrano in the 8th
b-doubled for Howry in the 10th
Batting
2B - Mike Fontenot (5, Park)
SF - Geovany Soto (2)
RBI - Alfonso Soriano (29), Geovany Soto (36)
Team LOB - 7
Fielding
DP - Theriot-Lee, DeRosa-Theriot-Lee, Theriot-DeRosa-Lee
E - Ryan Theriot (5, Throwing)
Chicago Cubs
Carlos Zambrano 8611430 2.33
Jose Ascanio 1000110 1.80
Bob Howry (W,1-2) 1100020 4.82
HBP - Kemp (by Carlos Zambrano)
Pitches-Strikes - Carlos Zambrano 130-79, Jose Ascanio 19-12, Bob Howry 18-13
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Carlos Zambrano 12-7
Batters Faced - Carlos Zambrano 33, Jose Ascanio 4, Bob Howry 4
Game Information
Attendance - 39945
Game Time - 3:07
Temperature - 56
Umpires - Home - Alfonso Marquez, First Base - Andy Fletcher, Second Base - Mike Reilly, Third Base - Bob Davidson