|Arizona Diamondbacks win another nailbiter, 5-4 over Chicago Cubs|
|Written by Admin|
|Sunday, 26 August 2007 22:46|
The Diamondbacks are in first place despite allowing 32 more runs than they've scored. A 5-4 victory over the NL Central-leading Chicago Cubs on Sunday was a perfect example of how they've been doing it.
Arizona spotted the Cubs a 3-0 first-inning lead, rallied behind two Chris Young home runs and then hung on with three superb fielding plays in the late innings.
``That game, the way we won today, embodies how we play all year,'' manager Bob Melvin said. ``That's the way we have to win. We need contributions from a lot of people.''
The Diamondbacks improved to a major-league best 29-16 in one-run games and won the three-game series between NL division leaders. Arizona extended its lead to three games over San Diego in the NL West on the eve of a four-game series with the Padres in Petco Park.
Despite dropping two out of three in the desert, the Cubs left town with a bigger lead in the NL Central - 1 1/2 games - than when they arrived. Chicago opens a three-game series against second-place Milwaukee at Wrigley Field on Tuesday night
In other NL games, it was: Philadelphia 14, San Diego 2; Los Angeles 6, New York 2; St. Louis 4, Atlanta 1; Colorado 10, Washington 5; San Francisco 5, Milwaukee 4; Cincinnati 9, Florida 3; and Houston 5, Pittsburgh 4.
The Diamondbacks used five pitchers, including Edgar Gonzalez (6-2), who pitched two scoreless innings after starter Yusmeiro Petit was lifted in the fourth with a 5-4 lead.
But no one made a bigger contribution than Young, who homered in the first and second innings and drove in four runs.
Young sparked a rally after a sloppy first inning, when Conor Jackson's fielding error and Stephen Drew's throwing error helped spot the Cubs a quick 2-0 lead. Cliff Floyd made it 3-0 with a 389-foot homer into the right field seats, his fifth.
Young greeted Jason Marquis (10-8) with his 27th home run, and eighth leading off a game.
``Inside, I really do want to do something,'' Young said. ``Not necessarily hit a home run, but I really want to do something to try to turn the momentum around.''
An inning later, Young hit a three-run shot to left to put the Diamondbacks up 5-3.
In the ninth, the Diamondbacks held on with defense as closer Jose Valverde tried to nail down his major-league leading 40th save in 46 chances.
With runners on first and second and no outs, Valverde struck out Jason Kendall, who had botched two bunt attempts, and catcher Chris Snyder threw out Mike Fontenot trying to steal third. Backup third baseman Jeff Cirillo short-hopped the throw and tagged out Fontenot.
``We had some speed on the bases, so we took a chance,'' Cubs manager Lou Piniella said.
After Valverde walked another batter, Jones hit a hard grounder between first and second. First baseman Tony Clark made a diving stop and tossed to Valverde at first to end the game. Valverde pumped his fists and shouted in celebration.
``You know when you come in late in the ballgame, the ball's going to find you,'' said Clark, who came on in the eighth.
Phillies 14, Padres 2
At Philadelphia, Ryan Howard homered and drove in four runs and the Phillies snapped a four-game losing streak.
Jayson Werth went 5-for-5 with four RBIs and Chris Coste hit a three-run homer for the Phillies, who moved within three games of the NL wild card-leading Padres.
Kyle Kendrick (7-3) pitched six strong innings for the victory.
Dodgers 6, Mets 2
At New York, David Wells (6-8) pitched five effective innings in his Dodgers debut and Los Angeles salvaged the finale of the three-game series.
Mets starter John Maine (13-8) was charged with six runs, three earned, and nine hits in 5 2-3 innings. He is 1-3 with a 7.77 ERA in five starts this month.
Cardinals 4, Braves 1
At St. Louis, Adam Wainwright (12-9) allowed a run in seven sharp innings, Juan Encarnacion homered and St. Louis handed Atlanta its fifth loss in six games.
Yadier Molina and So Taguchi each drove in a run in a three-run fifth off Jo-Jo Reyes (0-2) for the Cardinals, who took two of three in the series.
Rockies 10, Nationals 5
At Denver, Matt Holliday homered, doubled and drove in three runs, and Colorado finished off a sweep of Washington to move back within 3 1/2 games of San Diego in the NL wild-card race.
Elmer Dessens (2-1) gave up a run and three hits in six innings for his first Colorado win. It was his first win as a starter since April 25, 2004, with Arizona against San Diego.
Giants 5, Brewers 4
At San Francisco, Pedro Feliz scored from first base on Rich Aurilia's single to right field in the eighth inning, and the Giants finished off a three-game sweep of slumping Milwaukee.
The Brewers have lost four in a row and seven of their last 10 to drop to 25-40 on the road.
Reds 9, Marlins 3
At Cincinnati, catcher Ryan Jorgensen's first grand slam helped 29-year-old Tom Shearn win his long-awaited major league debut, and Cincinnati won its sixth straight.
The foundering Marlins have lost 11 of 12, falling a season-high 17 games under .500 at 57-74.
Astros 5, Pirates 4
At Houston, Ty Wigginton hit a go-ahead two-run homer in the eighth inning, and the Astros rallied to avoid a sweep.
Mark McLemore (3-0) went two innings in relief of Wandy Rodriguez, allowing one hit with three strikeouts. Brad Lidge pitched the ninth for his 13th save in 19 tries.