Victory not in the ‘Cards’ in rubber game vs. Chicago
Posted: Monday, July 7, 2008 4:37 pm
By: By The Associated Press
A day after a tough loss, the Chicago Cubs again showed why they have the league’s best mark and a team-record seven players heading to the All-Star game.
Chicago got 16 hits and strong starting pitching in a 7-1 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals on Sunday. Aramis Ramirez had two hits and three RBI and Sean Marshall won his first game of the year with six strong innings.
Geovany Soto hit his 15th homer and Derrek Lee had three hits and an RBI for the Cubs, who took two of three in the series.
The Cubs concluded a 4-6 road trip, their longest of the year, on a high note by extending their NL Central lead to 31/2 games over the Cardinals and Milwaukee.
Soto and Ramirez will be joined on the All-Star team by outfielders Kosuke Fukudome and Alfonso Soriano and pitchers Kerry Wood, Carlos Zambrano and Ryan Dempster.
“It’s flattering,” Cubs manager Lou Piniella said. “We’ve played well the first half and these guys that are going are, in a way, largely responsible. We have a few others but these guys have all done their jobs and done them well, and they’re being rewarded.”
In the other NL games on Sunday, it was New York 4, Philadelphia 2 in 12 innings; Cincinnati 6, Washington 5; Atlanta 7, Houston 6 in 17 innings; Milwaukee 11, Pittsburgh 6; Florida 10, Colorado 5; Los Angeles 5, San Francisco 3; and Arizona 3, San Diego 2.
Ryan Ludwick, selected for his first All-Star game, hit his 17th homer and first since June 11 for the Cardinals. Manager Tony La Russa informed Ludwick before the game that he was heading to Yankee Stadium.
“Of course it’s an accomplishment and you get excited,” Ludwick said. “I told him it was a long ways from the Toledo All-Star game in the International League.”
Marshall (1-2) won for the first time in five starts dating to last season, allowing one run on six hits in six innings.
The Cubs scored single runs in the second, third and fifth, peppering Todd Wellemeyer (7-4) with nine hits. Mark DeRosa had an RBI single in the first and Ramirez added an RBI single in the third.
Braves 7, Astros 6 (17)
Mark Teixeira singled off the wall with the bases loaded in the 17th inning, lifting host Atlanta in the longest game in Turner Field history.
Rain delayed the start of the game by 1 hour, 50 minutes, and solid pitching extended it much longer. The Braves rallied with two runs in the eighth inning to tie it, and each team had several chances to score the go-ahead run.
Royce Ring (2-1) pitched the 17th for Atlanta.
Brewers 11, Pirates 6
J.J. Hardy hit two homers, All-Star starter Ryan Braun added one and the host Brewers completed a three-game sweep.
Milwaukee tied franchise records with nine doubles and 12 extra-base hits to finish its fifth series sweep, all at home. The Brewers improved to 10 games over .500 for the first time this season.
Hardy went 3-for-4 with four RBI to raise his average to .446 over the past 18 games. Mitch Stetter (2-1) earned the win with two scoreless innings.
Jason Bay and Adam LaRoche homered for the Pirates. Denny Bautista (1-1) got the loss.
Mets 4, Phillies 2 (12)
Fernando Tatis hit a two-run homer in the 12th inning, lifting visiting New York in a game that ended more than seven hours after it started.
Jayson Werth hit a two-run shot off Billy Wagner with two outs in the ninth to send the game into extra innings after it was delayed 2 hours, 50 minutes because of heavy rain in the bottom of the eighth.
But the Mets avoided another devastating loss in a season filled with them when Tatis connected off Chad Durbin (2-2) with one out in the 12th for his second homer of the season.
Joe Smith (1-1) pitched 21/3 scoreless innings to earn the win.
Dodgers 5, Giants 3
James Loney doubled twice and drove in three runs and visiting Los Angeles beat San Francisco for its third consecutive series win.
Andre Ethier added three hits and drove in a run for the Dodgers. Matt Kemp also drove in a run.
Giants starter Matt Cain (5-7) still hasn’t beaten the Dodgers in seven starts. The right-hander gave up five runs and eight hits in six innings. He walked three and struck out five to fall to 0-4 against Los Angeles, the only NL West team he has yet to beat.
Brian Falkenborg (1-1) retired all three batters he faced.
Diamondbacks 3, Padres 2
Randy Johnson struck out 10 and allowed three hits in 6 1-3 innings and host Arizona beat San Diego.
Justin Upton hit the second-longest home run in Chase Field history and Mark Reynolds also homered for the Diamondbacks, who went 3-4 on their seven-game homestand.
Johnson (5-7) moved into sole possession of 24th place on the career victory list with his 289th win, moving ahead of Tommy John. It was his first victory since May 18.
Josh Banks (2-4) lost his fourth straight start.
Marlins 10, Rockies 5
Cody Ross homered and drove in five runs, Chris Volstad tossed two scoreless innings to win his major league debut for visiting Florida.
Colorado had won five straight but got a rare bad outing from ace Aaron Cook (11-6), who allowed seven earned runs and 11 hits in 71/3 innings.
Reds 6, Nationals 5
Adam Dunn hit a three-run homer that started Cincinnati’s comeback, and the host Reds completed a four-game series sweep.
Edinson Volquez (11-3) got the victory and was chosen for his first All-Star team, Cincinnati’s only representative.
Right-hander Collin Balester (1-1) took the loss for Washington.