Chicago at Toronto

Chi. Cubs
W: T. Lilly (7-5) L: J. Litsch (7-3)
HR: CHC - A. Ramirez (10)   TOR - G. Zaun (3)

Cubs 7, Blue Jays 4 wire reports

TORONTO -- Life for the Chicago Cubs without Alfonso Soriano is well under way, and so far the results have been surprisingly positive.

Ted Lilly gave up one hit in six scoreless innings, Derrek Lee drove in three runs and the Cubs won for the sixth time in seven games with a 7-4 victory against the Toronto Blue Jays on Sunday.

Soriano broke a bone in his left hand when he was hit by a pitch from Atlanta's Jeff Bennett on Wednesday and is expected to miss at least six weeks. That was supposed to leave the Cubs with a gaping hole in their lineup, but so far that hasn't happened.

Chicago has won three of four since Soriano's departure and averaged five runs per contest against a Toronto team whose starting staff entered Sunday's game ranked third in the major leagues with a 3.61 ERA.

"We've got a good enough team to get by," third baseman Aramis Ramirez said. "We're playing great. I thought we should have won all three games here but we left a lot of guys on base during the first game. We can get by without Soriano."

Ramirez added his 10th homer of the season for the Cubs, who haven't lost a series since May 25 at Pittsburgh. Much of that success has to do with Lilly, who won for the sixth time in seven decisions dating to May 3 and has a 3.81 ERA over that span.

"I think he has been improving as the season goes on," Cubs manager Lou Piniella said. "I think the pop on his fastball is better. He has got a little more sharpness on his curveball and it makes his changeup a whole lot better."

Lilly (7-5) struggled with his control but allowed just one hit. He walked the bases loaded in the third before getting Vernon Wells to pop out to second base and end the inning.

The Cubs led 3-0 in the sixth when Lilly again found himself in trouble. After Wells reached base on an error to shortstop Ryan Theriot, Lilly walked Scott Rolen to bring the tying run to the plate. Rod Barajas hit a deep fly that Reed Johnson caught at the warning track, and Brad Wilkerson grounded out to second base to end the threat.

"I feel like against a club like this I got away with a few pitches," said Lilly, who played for the Jays from 2004-06. "I know I only gave up a hit but there were some hard-hit balls hit right at guys, and especially with the walks being able to come out of that without the damage they could have done I'm pretty fortunate."

Lilly struck out six and walked five, departing after six innings having thrown 110 pitches. The only hit he surrendered was to Wilkerson with two out in the fourth.

"Whether he has his best stuff or not, he's going to have the same attitude of trying to beat you every day," Johnson said. "He's a competitor and you can see how bad he wants it, and I think that also can become contagious and run throughout the team."

The Cubs' offense clicked in the third off starter Jesse Litsch. With runners on the corners and two out, Kosuke Fukudome singled past a diving Wilkerson at first base to score the game's first run. Lee and Jim Edmonds added RBI singles to give the Cubs a 3-0 lead.

Chicago added four more in the seventh on a two-run single by Lee and Ramirez's two-run homer. Litsch (7-3) was charged with five runs and eight hits over 6 1/3 innings.

Rolen was lifted for a pinch hitter in the seventh inning after he fouled a pitch off his left foot during his previous at-bat. He went for X-rays, which came back negative.

Cubs reliever Scott Eyre had his scoreless streak snapped at a franchise-record 33 games when he allowed a sacrifice fly to Alex Rios in the seventh. It was Eyre's first earned run since last Aug. 16.

Gregg Zaun added a two-run homer in the eighth off Chicago right-hander Neal Cotts. Kerry Wood surrendered another run in the ninth before closing things out.


Jays manager John Gibbons was ejected during the bottom of the eighth inning after arguing a call with first-base umpire Adrian Johnson. ... There was a three-minute delay during the top of the third as the Rogers Centre roof was closed due to incoming weather. ... Wells was back in the Blue Jays lineup after experiencing discomfort in his left wrist during his last at-bat on Saturday. ... Zaun made his return from the 15-day DL and was inserted into the lineup as designated hitter. Zaun had been out since May 28 with a right elbow injury.

Copyright 2017 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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Players of the Game

T. Lilly
IP 6.0
H 1
ER 0
BB 5
K 6

D. Lee
AB 4
R 1
H 2
HR 0

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Chicago Cubs
Reed Johnson, LF5220001 .267
Kosuke Fukudome, RF5111012 .293
Derrek Lee, DH4123110 .289
Aramis Ramirez, 3B5112002 .300
Jim Edmonds, CF4021010 .234
Geovany Soto, C4010003 .288
Mark DeRosa, 2B4000001 .299
Micah Hoffpauir, 1B4120000 .385
Ryan Theriot, SS4110002 .310
2B - Reed Johnson (11, Litsch), Jim Edmonds (8, Camp), Micah Hoffpauir (4, Litsch)
HR - Aramis Ramirez (10, Camp)
RBI - Kosuke Fukudome (29), Derrek Lee 3 (44), Aramis Ramirez 2 (45), Jim Edmonds (20)
2-OUT RBI - Derrek Lee 2 (8), Aramis Ramirez 2 (16), Jim Edmonds (5)
Team LOB - 6
E - Ryan Theriot (9, Misplayed grounder)
Chicago Cubs
Ted Lilly (W,7-5) 6100560 4.76
Scott Eyre 0.2211100 0.93
Carlos Marmol 1000000 2.09
Neal Cotts 0.1122111 2.84
Kerry Wood 1211000 2.65
WP - Scott Eyre (1)
Pitches-Strikes - Ted Lilly 110-68, Scott Eyre 27-16, Carlos Marmol 18-10, Neal Cotts 13-7, Kerry Wood 20-13
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Ted Lilly 7-6, Scott Eyre 1-1, Carlos Marmol 1-2, Kerry Wood 1-2
Batters Faced - Ted Lilly 25, Scott Eyre 5, Carlos Marmol 3, Neal Cotts 3, Kerry Wood 5
Toronto Blue Jays
Alex Rios, RF3111110 .272
Marco Scutaro, 2B-3B5010011 .257
Scott Rolen, 3B2000100 .283
   a- Joe Inglett, PH-2B2020000 .312
Vernon Wells, CF4001015 .276
Kevin Mench, LF2000200 .260
   b- Matt Stairs, PH1000001 .257
Rod Barajas, C4000003 .286
Brad Wilkerson, 1B3110113 .242
Gregg Zaun, DH3212111 .266
John McDonald, SS3000121 .133
a-doubled for Rolen in the 7th
b-flied out for Mench in the 9th
2B - Joe Inglett (4, Eyre)
HR - Gregg Zaun (3, Cotts)
SF - Alex Rios (3), Vernon Wells (3)
RBI - Alex Rios (26), Vernon Wells (28), Gregg Zaun 2 (10)
2-OUT RBI - Gregg Zaun 2 (5)
Team LOB - 10
Toronto Blue Jays
Jesse Litsch (L,7-3) 6.1855120 3.70
Jesse Carlson 0.1000000 1.88
Shawn Camp 2.1422011 3.80
Pitches-Strikes - Jesse Litsch 90-58, Jesse Carlson 3-2, Shawn Camp 29-22
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Jesse Litsch 6-11, Shawn Camp 2-4
Batters Faced - Jesse Litsch 28, Jesse Carlson 1, Shawn Camp 11
Game Information
Attendance - 40738
Game Time - 2:59
Temperature - 70
Umpires - Home - Jeff Nelson, First Base - Adrian Johnson, Second Base - Tim Tschida, Third Base - Jim Joyce