Dodgers use hit and run to sink CubsMay 28, 2007 - 12:54 AM LOS ANGELES (Ticker) -- In a battle of bullpens, the Los Angeles Dodgers had to like their chances against the Chicago Cubs.
Juan Pierre was hit by a pitch to force in the winning run in the bottom of the 11th inning to lift the Dodgers to a 2-1 victory over the Cubs in the rubber game of a three-game series on Sunday.
It was a bizarre ending to an otherwise magnificent pitching performance by both squads. The Cubs' bullpen suffered their second blown save of the series, having coughed up a three-run lead in Friday's 9-8 defeat.
"It's something that you don't see every day," Cubs manager Lou Piniella said. "The first game of the series our bullpen didn't do their job, (Saturday) they looked amazing and then today it wasn't a good one again. We just need to get some consistency cause I know we got good arms out there."
Los Angeles improved to 3-0 in extra-inning games this season and remained tied atop the National League West with San Diego.
Angel Guzman (0-1), the fifth pitcher for the Cubs, opened the 11th by issuing consecutive walks to Ramon Martinez and Wilson Betemit.
After a failed pickoff attempt that landed Martinez on third base, Carlos Marmol relieved Guzman and intentionally walked Rafael Furcal to load the bases.
That strategy backfired when Marmol hit Pierre with a pitch to push in the deciding run.
"That was something I wasn't expecting at all," Pierre said. "I was just looking for a pitch that I can lift like I had done in my other at-bats to get a sacrifice."
The Cubs had forged ahead with a single run in the eighth - and it could have been more. Alfonso Soriano, Ryan Theriot and Derrek Lee opened the inning with consecutive singles off reliever Rudy Seanez, with Lee's plating Soriano for a 1-0 lead.
Seanez battled back to get two outs before Joe Beimel needed one pitch to get out of the bases-loaded threat by retiring Aramis Ramirez on a deep fly ball to right field.
The Cubs' bullpen handed it right back, as lefthander Scott Eyre served up a solo home run to pinch hitter Andre Ethier on an 0-2 pitch to lead off the eighth for a 1-1 tie.
"I was pumped up because it was a big game and it was amazing for me to come off the bench after a couple hours and get a pitch to drive with two strikes on me," Ethier said. "The way the game was going I felt like that was going to be a big run for us."
It was the four pinch-hit homer for Los Angeles, tying the club with the Cubs and Arizona Diamondback for the major league lead.
The blast was the 12th allowed by Chicago relievers, who have a combined 4-13 record this season.
Chad Billingsley (3-0), the fifth pitcher for the Dodgers, got the win by working a scoreless 11th inning.
"Chad came in after pitching three innings for us last night and did a great job again and got the win," Dodgers starting pitcher Randy Wolf said.
Wolf and Chicago's Rich Hill were outstanding in the duel of lefthanded starters.
Hill worked six innings before being removed for pinch hitter Daryle Ward in the seventh. The lefthander yielded just three hits to go with three strikeouts and two walks.
"I felt like I have been pitching a lot better and felt like I pitched a good game and gave us a chance to win," Hill said. "I agree to take me out of the game at that time because the way the game was going, one run was going to win it and the time was right to take me out for a pinch hitter."
Wolf also allowed three hits while striking out five and walking two in six innings. He now has 71 strikeouts on the season, which is third in the National League.
"I was just trying to make pitches and get quick outs," Wolf said. "This was a good pitchers' game and it doesn't matter to me how we win a game, because all that matters is who has more runs on the board in the end."
Hill had lost his previous three decisions - all on the road - but looked much better Sunday, allowing only a single to lead off the game in the first four innings while throwing just 41 pitches.
Wolf, conversely, entered riding a three-game winning streak and also breezed through the first four innings before running into trouble in the fifth.
Matt Murton led off the frame with a double as the Cubs eventually loaded the bases against Wolf, who escaped unscathed by getting Theriot to ground to first base on his 34th pitch of the inning.
"We definitely had our chances to put more runs on the board, but you just have to tip your hat to their pitchers over there," Piniella said.
Hill encountered his first problems in the fifth as well, putting two runners on with two out, but averted further damage by retiring Brady Clark on a groundout to shortstop.
Wolf bounced back to retire the side in order in the sixth to end his day.
With Angel Pagan on third base in the seventh, Ward, who was batting for Hill, made a bid to break up the scoreless game by ripping a shot headed toward right field, only to see second baseman Jeff Kent dive to stab his line drive for the third out.
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9
- - - - - - - - -
CHICAGO CUBS 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0
LA DODGERS 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0
10 11 R H E
-- -- - - -
CHICAGO CUBS 0 0 1 7 0
LA DODGERS 0 1 2 4 1 (FINAL 11)
May 27 7:36 PM
AT LA DODGERS - SCORING UPDATE
JUAN PIERRE HIT BY CARLOS MARMOL PITCH WITH BASES LOADED
SCORED RAMON MARTINEZ.
FINAL SCORE: LA DODGERS 2, CHICAGO CUBS 1
Cubs vs. DodgersMay 27 7:36 PM
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
- - - - - - - - - - - -
CHICAGO CUBS 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 1 7 0
LA DODGERS 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 1 4 1 (TOP 10)
CURRENT PITCHERS: CHN - ANGEL GUZMAN
LOS - JONATHAN BROXTON
DUE UP FOR CHICAGO CUBS: R THERIOT (.281, 1-FOR-4)
D LEE (.359, 1-FOR-4, RBI)
M BARRETT (.252, 0-FOR-3, BB)
May 27 6:52 PM
AT LA DODGERS - SCORING UPDATE
SOLO HOME RUN BY ANDRE ETHIER (4) TO RIGHT WITH 0 OUT IN
THE 8TH OFF SCOTT EYRE.
CURRENT SCORE: CHICAGO CUBS 1, LA DODGERS 1
DUE UP FOR LA DODGERS: B CLARK (.239, 0-FOR-2)
Cubs vs. DodgersMay 27 6:27 PM
AT LA DODGERS - SCORING UPDATE
SINGLE BY DERREK LEE SCORED ALFONSO SORIANO.
SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, D LEE ON FIRST, R THERIOT ON SECOND, 0 OUT
CURRENT SCORE: CHICAGO CUBS 1
LA DODGERS 0 TOP, 8TH
DUE UP FOR CHICAGO CUBS: M BARRETT (.253, 0-FOR-2, BB)
Cubs vs. DodgersMay 27 6:10 PM
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