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 CHICAGO (AP) -Derrek Lee drove in three runs, including a go-ahead two-run homer in the eighth inning, and the NL East-leading Chicago Cubs rallied to beat the Houston Astros 6-5 on Sunday.
Trailing 5-4, Alfonso Soriano singled off Astros reliever Chad Qualls (6-4) and with two outs, Lee homered on an 0-1 pitch to left-center field to cap a four-run comeback by the Cubs.
Carlos Marmol (5-1) got one out in the eighth inning and Ryan Dempster pitched a perfect ninth inning for his 25th save for the Cubs, who remained 1 1/2 games ahead of the Milwaukee Brewers in the division.
Lance Berkman homered for the Astros, who lost two of three to the Cubs.
The Astros led 5-1 when Jason Kendall hit what looked to be a routine double play to Eric Bruntlett in the sixth inning. But Bruntlett dropped the bouncer, putting runners on first and second with no outs. Reliever Mark McLemore then walked pinch hitter Craig Monroe to load the bases, and Soriano followed with a sacrifice fly off Dave Borkowski.
Ryan Theriot followed with an RBI single to cut the Astros' lead to 5-3.
Borkowski limited the damage by getting Aramis Ramirez on a called strike to end the inning. Ramirez slammed his helmet and was immediately ejected by plate umpire Tony Randozzo after saying a few words to him.
Pinch hitter Matt Murton led off the seventh with a homer off reliever Trever Miller.
Hunter Pence led off the game with a walk. One out later, Berkman homered on a 1-0 pitch to center for his 27th of the season as Cubs starter Rich Hill labored through the first inning throwing 34 pitches.
Astros starter Woody Williams helped himself with a single in the third, and Pence followed with a liner past shortstop Theriot that rolled all the way to the warning track for an RBI double.
Ty Wigginton drove a ball into left in the fifth inning that Soriano leaped for near the ivy. But he mistimed his jump and the ball bounced off wall, allowing Berkman to score from first. With two outs, Bruntlett tested Soriano with another deep fly that fell for a double, scoring Wigginton and making it 5-1.
The Cubs got on the board in the third inning. Theriot walked, stole second and advanced to third on catcher Eric Munson's throwing error. Lee followed with a hard grounder to Wigginton at third, who gathered in the ball but dropped it, allowing Lee to reach safely without a throw.
Lee was credited with an RBI single.
Notes: Cubs manager Lou Piniella decided he will skip LHP Sean Marshall's next turn in the starting rotation. RHP Steve Trachsel, who was acquired in a trade from the Orioles on Friday, will take Marshall's spot. Trachsel will start on Tuesday against the Dodgers. ... Warnings were issued to both benches after Hill hit Berkman with a pitch in the fifth inning. Lee and Kendall were hit earlier in the game by Williams.
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