3/23 Cubs 7, Angels 6
Scott Hairston hit a tie-breaking solo home run to highlight a four-run seventh inning but the Cubs had to rally in the eighth as pinch-runner Shawon Dunston Jr. scored the game-winner on a wild pitch to post a 7-6 victory Saturday over the Angels.
With the game tied at 6 in the Chicago eighth, Steve Clevenger doubled to lead off and was lifted for Dunston, son of former Cubs shortstop Shawon Dunston Jr., now a coach in the Giants’ Minor League organization. One out later, Dunston scampered home on a wild pitch by the Angels’ Ernesto Frieri.
The Cubs trailed 5-2 going into the seventh. Brent Lillibridge tripled to open the inning and chase Joe Blanton. Nick Maronde then walked pinch-hitter Dave Sappelt, and David DeJesus hit a RBI double. Alberto Gonzalez, battling for a spot on the bench, delivered a two-run double but was thrown out at third trying to extend his hit. One out later, Hairston connected on his home run.
Carlos Marmol picked up the win despite blowing the lead in the eighth when he walked two and hit another batter. The Angels tied the game when a run scored on a passed ball by Clevenger.
Edwin Jackson started for the Cubs, and gave up five runs on eight hits over five innings.
“They came out swinging,” Jackson said of the Angels. “I left a couple balls out over the middle of the plate and they did a good job hitting the ball. I challenged hitters, and they got their hits.”
He also collected two hits, including a RBI single in the fifth. Jackson will start the Cubs’ final game at HoHoKam Stadium on Thursday, and then be slotted after Jeff Samardzija for the second regular season game, April 3, against the Pirates. Is he ready?
“Health-wise, I feel pretty good,” Jackson said. “If the season started tomorrow, I’d be confident where I am and I feel I can go out and do what I need to do to help the team win.”
– Carrie Muskat