Cubs
Braves
9 - 1 Final
  for this game

Soriano homers three times as Cubs blast Braves

Jun 9, 2007 - 4:16 AM ATLANTA (Ticker) -- Alfonso Soriano sure does love facing Atlanta Braves pitching.

Soriano continued his torrid attack by blasting three home runs and Sean Marshall hurled six solid innings to lead the Chicago Cubs to a 9-1 rout over the reeling Braves on Friday.

Soriano, who was signed to an eight-year deal by the Cubs in the offseason, has notoriously decimated Braves pitching and entered Friday's contest batting .361 (43-for-119) with 11 homers and 27 RBI in 28 games against Atlanta. The slugger had an astronomical .748 slugging percentage against the Braves.

It took just one pitch for the 31-year old Dominican to improve upon those numbers.

Soriano, who has earned Louisville Slugger awards in four of his last five seasons, smashed the first pitch of the game off Atlanta starter Lance Cormier (0-2) over the right field wall for his 35th career leadoff homer.

"I feel very good," said Soriano, who tied Bobby Bonds for fourth on the all-time list for leadoff homers. "Especially with (hitting) the home run on the first pitch."

But Soriano was not done. He smashed the next pitch he saw from Cormier over the left field wall in the second inning to give the Cubs a 3-0 lead.

"Why do I have to wait for the next pitch," Soriano asked. "I'm getting strikes. I'm very aggressive."

"It was a little cutter down and in and he got a homer," Cormier said. "He's a good hitter."

Two innings later, Soriano smashed Cormier's 0-2 pitch over the left field wall against a stiff wind to extend the advantage to 4-1.

"I'm seeing the ball good," said Soriano, who has four homers and a triple in his last five at bats against Cormier. "I saw it pretty good tonight. He threw strikes and I hit it very hard. I'm always ready to hit. That's my approach."

"Number one, he's a real good hitter," Braves manager Bobby Cox said. "Number two, you have to make good pitches to a good hitter. We didn't even come close to doing that."

It was the second time in Soriano's major league career that the slugger has smashed three homers in the game. The Dominican also found the seats three times on April 21, 2006, at RFK Stadium against the Braves, when he was with the Nationals. Two of the homers came off Atlanta ace John Smoltz; the other was off reliever Oscar Villareal.

"I don't know (why I am successful against the Braves)," Soriano said. "I feel very comfortable against Atlanta. Last year I hit three (homers) too."

Ironically, Soriano strolled to the plate again in the fifth against Villareal to a standing ovation from the Cubs fans at Turner Field. Much to their chagrin, he was intentionally walked.

But the slugger's bid to become the first major leaguer since Carlos Delgado to smash four homers in one game came to an end after he grounded out in the seventh and singled in his final at bat in the ninth. Delgado accomplished the feat on September 25, 2003.

"(I was rooting for Soriano to hit the fourth homer) probably as badly as he wanted to hit the fourth homer," said Jacque Jones, who was a late addition to the lineup after Cliff Floyd was excused to deal with a family matter. "Any time he starts off the game like that and his next two at bats end up has homers, it's exciting."

Soriano's heroics helped Chicago starter Sean Marshall (2-2) improve to .500 on the season. The lefthander allowed one run, four hits, walked two and struck out four to improve to 2-1 with a 1.93 ERA in three starts against Atlanta.

"It's easy to settle down when guys swing the bat like we did," Marshall said. "(Soriano's) added that extra comfortable aspect to the clubhouse. He's got a fun approach right now."

Atlanta scored its only run in the third when Yunel Escobar singled in Kelly Johnson.

It was yet another disappointing start for Cormier, who surrendered eight runs and nine hits in four innings on Sunday against the Cubs. Making his second major league start since coming off the disabled list with a strained right triceps muscle, the 26-year old Cormier allowed five runs and five hits, walked six and struck out three in 3 2/3 innings.

"It's very frustrating," Cormier said. "I never felt better before I got hurt. Now, it's a battle out there. I'm just trying to get the feel back there."

Despite the brutal line, the righthander's ERA actually fell from 18.00 to 15.26.

Michael Barrett homered in the fourth for Chicago, which has won five of its last six games.








  • NL
    FINAL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    CHICAGO CUBS 2 1 0 2 1 0 2 0 1 9 15 0
    ATLANTA 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 6 3 (FINAL)

    BATTERIES: CHN - SEAN MARSHALL, WILL OHMAN (7TH), CARLOS MARMOL (8TH), MIKE
    WUERTZ (9TH) AND MICHAEL BARRETT
    ATL - LANCE CORMIER, OSCAR VILLARREAL (4TH), PETER
    MOYLAN (6TH),

    Jun 8 10:35 PM


  • NL
    AT ATLANTA - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY FELIX PIE SCORED ANGEL PAGAN.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, F PIE ON FIRST, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: CHICAGO CUBS 9
    ATLANTA 1 TOP, 9TH
    DUE UP FOR CHICAGO CUBS: D LEE (.338, 1-FOR-3, 2 BB)

    Cubs vs. BravesJun 8 10:26 PM


  • NL
    AT ATLANTA - SCORING UPDATE
    ERROR BY SCOTT THORMAN ALLOWED FELIX PIE TO SCORE.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, D LEE ON FIRST, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: CHICAGO CUBS 8
    ATLANTA 1 TOP, 7TH
    DUE UP FOR CHICAGO CUBS: M BARRETT (.246, 2-FOR-3, BB, HR, RBI)

    Cubs vs. BravesJun 8 9:54 PM


  • NL
    AT ATLANTA - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY FELIX PIE SCORED CESAR IZTURIS.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, F PIE ON FIRST, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: CHICAGO CUBS 7
    ATLANTA 1 TOP, 7TH
    DUE UP FOR CHICAGO CUBS: D LEE (.335, 0-FOR-2, 2 BB)

    Cubs vs. BravesJun 8 9:50 PM


  • NL
    AT ATLANTA - SCORING UPDATE
    SACRIFICE FLY BY FELIX PIE SCORED CESAR IZTURIS.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, A SORIANO ON SECOND, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: CHICAGO CUBS 6
    ATLANTA 1 TOP, 5TH
    DUE UP FOR CHICAGO CUBS: D LEE (.336, 0-FOR-1, 2 BB)

    Cubs vs. BravesJun 8 9:14 PM


  • NL
    AT ATLANTA - SCORING UPDATE
    SOLO HOME RUN BY MICHAEL BARRETT (8) TO LEFT WITH 2 OUT IN
    THE 4TH OFF LANCE CORMIER.
    CURRENT SCORE: CHICAGO CUBS 5, ATLANTA 1
    DUE UP FOR CHICAGO CUBS: M DEROSA (.250, 0-FOR-1, BB, RBI)

    Cubs vs. BravesJun 8 8:53 PM


  • NL
    AT ATLANTA - SCORING UPDATE
    SOLO HOME RUN BY ALFONSO SORIANO (10) TO LEFT WITH 0 OUT IN
    THE 4TH OFF LANCE CORMIER.
    CURRENT SCORE: CHICAGO CUBS 4, ATLANTA 1
    DUE UP FOR CHICAGO CUBS: F PIE (.270, 0-FOR-1, BB)

    Cubs vs. BravesJun 8 8:48 PM


  • NL
    AT ATLANTA - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY YUNEL ESCOBAR SCORED KELLY JOHNSON.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, Y ESCOBAR ON FIRST, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: CHICAGO CUBS 3
    ATLANTA 1 BOTTOM, 3RD
    DUE UP FOR ATLANTA: E RENTERIA (.319, 0-FOR-0, BB)

    Cubs vs. BravesJun 8 8:40 PM


  • NL
    AT ATLANTA - SCORING UPDATE
    SOLO HOME RUN BY ALFONSO SORIANO (9) TO LEFT WITH 1 OUT IN
    THE 2ND OFF LANCE CORMIER.
    CURRENT SCORE: CHICAGO CUBS 3, ATLANTA 0
    DUE UP FOR CHICAGO CUBS: F PIE (.270, 0-FOR-1)

    Cubs vs. BravesJun 8 8:09 PM


  • NL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    CHICAGO CUBS 2 2 1 0
    ATLANTA 0 0 0 (BOT 1)

    CURRENT PITCHERS: CHN - SEAN MARSHALL
    ATL - LANCE CORMIER

    DUE UP FOR ATLANTA: K JOHNSON (.286, 7 HR, 33 RBI)
    Y ESCOBAR (.321, 1 HR, 2 RBI)
    E RENTERIA (.319, 8 HR, 29 RB

    Cubs vs. BravesJun 8 7:54 PM