for this game

Zambrano helps Cubs cruise past Cards with best outing of season

Apr 29, 2007 - 12:56 AM ST. LOUIS (Ticker) -- Opponents know when they face Carlos Zambrano, he can sometimes be his own worst enemy. At this point, the St. Louis Cardinals are tired of seeing what the Chicago Cubs ace can do when he is under control.

Zambrano pitched seven strong innings and Jacque Jones drove in four runs as the Cubs downed the Cardinals, 8-1, to post their first three-game winning streak of the season.

Zambrano (2-2) is unbeaten against the Cardinals in his last eight starts, posting a 5-0 record since the start of the 2005 season. The erratic righthander started the day tied for the league lead with 19 walks but did not walk a Cardinal, marking the first time since August 22, 2005 he has not surrendered a base on balls.

"(Zambrano) was much sharper today," Cubs manager Lou Piniella said. "He gives up a solo home run but Pujols will hit a home run off of anybody. No walks tells the whole story."

A two-time All-Star, Zambrano yielded one run and seven hits with two strikeouts. He lost his shutout bid in the seventh, when Albert Pujols hit his sixth homer of the season.

"I'm happy because I didn't walk anyone, that's the key to the game," Zambrano said. When you pitch ahead in the count every time you'll have a good game. That's what happened today."

"I don't think (Zambrano) was throwing as hard as he usually throws," Pujols said. "That will tell you how good he is, when he doesn't have his best stuff."

The Cardinals' offense has scored fewer than four runs for the 16th time in 23 games this season.

"We just didn't play very well," Cardinals second baseman Adam Kennedy said. "That seven-run inning, especially with Zambrano on the hill, makes it tough. It's quite an uphill battle you're looking at."

The Cubs broke open a tight pitchers' duel between Zambrano and Adam Wainwright with seven runs in the fifth inning.

Henry Blanco opened the onslaught by doubling home Jacque Jones to give the Cubs a 1-0 lead. Following a sacrifice bunt by Zambrano, the Cubs were able to get the next four hitters on base, starting with a walk to Alfonso Soriano to place runners on the corners.

Ryan Theriot singled to left to score Blanco before Derrek Lee doubled to left field for an RBI double and a 3-0 lead. Wainwright intentionally walked Aramis Ramirez before being pulled in favor of reliever Tyler Johnson, who promptly surrendered Cliff Floyd's RBI groundout.

"We got a couple hits when we needed them," Jones said. "Guys got on base, worked the count a little bit (and a) couple guys drew walks to give the guy behind them a chance. When you do that, you're going to have some success."

Jones, in his second plate appearance of the inning, followed a single from Mark DeRosa with a bases-clearing triple over the head of Gold Glove center fielder Jim Edmonds that pushed the Cubs' advantage to 7-0.

"It didn't even dawn on me that I batted twice in the same inning," Jones said. "That's how long of an inning it was."

"We felt we would be capable of having a big inning," Piniella said. "That's exactly what we did today - good hitting. Jones capped it off with that triple off the center field wall."

Chicago pounded out four extra-base hits and sent 11 batters to the plate in the frame.

Jones had three hits for the first time this season and recorded his highest RBI total since May 30, 2006. Lee reached base three times an extended his season-long streak of reaching base to 23 games, breaking Ron Santo's 34-year club record.

Wainwright, who yielded 12 runs in 11 2/3 innings in his previous two starts, was tagged for six runs and seven hits in 4 1/3 innings. The former closer surrendered just three runs in 13 2/3 innings in his first two starts.

"(Wainwright) had the one inning," St. Louis manager Tony La Russa said. "That one inning they had a couple of doubles and there was no room for a mistake and he made a couple of mistakes. He was doing better early in the game and it got away from him that one inning. He's going to be fine."






  • 5
    roots
    bigcubfanhp29 Added 5 roots

    Cubs vs. CardinalsJul 26 9:20 PM


  • NL
    FINAL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    CHICAGO CUBS 0 0 0 0 7 0 1 0 0 8 11 0
    ST LOUIS 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 1 7 0 (FINAL)

    BATTERIES: CHN - CARLOS ZAMBRANO, WILL OHMAN (8TH), ROCKY CHERRY (9TH) AND
    HENRY BLANCO
    STL - ADAM WAINWRIGHT, TYLER JOHNSON (5TH), JOSH
    HANCOCK (6TH), BRAD THOMPSON (9TH) AN

    Apr 28 6:42 PM


  • NL
    AT ST LOUIS - SCORING UPDATE
    SOLO HOME RUN BY ALBERT PUJOLS (6) TO LEFT WITH 0 OUT IN
    THE 7TH OFF CARLOS ZAMBRANO.
    CURRENT SCORE: CHICAGO CUBS 8, ST LOUIS 1
    DUE UP FOR ST LOUIS: S ROLEN (.271, 0-FOR-2)

    Cubs vs. CardinalsApr 28 6:07 PM


  • NL
    AT ST LOUIS - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY JACQUE JONES SCORED DERREK LEE.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, J JONES ON FIRST, M DEROSA ON SECOND, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: CHICAGO CUBS 8
    ST LOUIS 0 TOP, 7TH
    DUE UP FOR CHICAGO CUBS: H BLANCO (.286, 2-FOR-3, RBI)

    Cubs vs. CardinalsApr 28 6:00 PM


  • NL
    AT ST LOUIS - SCORING UPDATE
    TRIPLE BY JACQUE JONES SCORED DERREK LEE, CLIFF FLOYD AND
    MARK DEROSA.
    SITUATION: 7 RUNS IN, J JONES ON THIRD, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: CHICAGO CUBS 7
    ST LOUIS 0 TOP, 5TH
    DUE UP FOR CHICAGO CUBS: H BLANCO (.308, 2-FOR-2, RBI)

    Cubs vs. CardinalsApr 28 5:24 PM


  • NL
    AT ST LOUIS - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY DERREK LEE SCORED ALFONSO SORIANO.
    SITUATION: 3 RUNS IN, D LEE ON SECOND, R THERIOT ON THIRD, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: CHICAGO CUBS 3
    ST LOUIS 0 TOP, 5TH
    DUE UP FOR CHICAGO CUBS: A RAMIREZ (.307, 0-FOR-2)

    Cubs vs. CardinalsApr 28 5:15 PM


  • NL
    AT ST LOUIS - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY RYAN THERIOT SCORED HENRY BLANCO.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, R THERIOT ON FIRST, A SORIANO ON SECOND, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: CHICAGO CUBS 2
    ST LOUIS 0 TOP, 5TH
    DUE UP FOR CHICAGO CUBS: D LEE (.389, 1-FOR-2)

    Cubs vs. CardinalsApr 28 5:13 PM


  • NL
    AT ST LOUIS - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY HENRY BLANCO SCORED JACQUE JONES.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, H BLANCO ON SECOND, 0 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: CHICAGO CUBS 1
    ST LOUIS 0 TOP, 5TH
    DUE UP FOR CHICAGO CUBS: C ZAMBRANO (.250, 0-FOR-1)

    Cubs vs. CardinalsApr 28 5:08 PM