Cubs pile on hits in runaway rout
Cubs pile on hits in runaway rout
Lee, Bako homer in 24-hit attack; Dempster fans six in 4 1/3
By Mychael Urban / MLB.com
CUBS 20, A'S 5
at Phoenix, Ariz.
Monday, March 23
Cubs at the plate: Micah Hoffpauir opened the scoring with an RBI double in the first inning. Ryan Theriot tripled and scored on a single by Mike Fontenot in the third, Theriot added an RBI single in the fourth, and Derrek Lee hit his first homer of the spring, a leadoff shot to dead center in the fifth. Hoffpauir followed Lee's blast with a double and scored on Reed Johnson's sacrifice fly.
Paul Bako's leadoff single in the sixth extended to nine Chicago's streak of consecutive games with at least 10 hits, and after Bako scored on Theriot's third hit of the game, the Cubs broke the game open with four consecutive two-out hits: a two-run single by Jake Fox, a two-run double by Johnson, an RBI single by Bobby Scales and Bako's second hit of the frame, the first of his two RBI doubles on the day. Bako added a solo homer in the ninth.
A's at the plate: Corey Wimberly doubled, stole third base and scored on a groundout to the right side by Nomar Garciaparra in the fifth inning, but the bats were mostly silent as Oakland lost its sixth game in a row. The last time the A's lost six consecutive Spring Training games was in 1987. Jack Cust was one of the few bright spots, going 2-for-2 with a walk, and he's 9-for-18 over his past six games.
Cubs on the mound: Starter Ryan Dempster turned in his third consecutive strong outing, scattering three hits and a walk while striking out six over 4 1/3 innings. Dempster, who wiggled out of a bases-loaded, one-out jam in the fourth and was replaced by Kevin Gregg with a runner at second base and one out in the fifth, was charged with an earned run for the first time since March 6 after the runner came around to score on a groundout. Gregg walked one and struck out one in two-thirds on an inning, Aaron Heilman gave up a run on two hits and a walk in one inning, and Luis Vizcaino worked a scoreless inning.
A's on the mound: Starter Dana Eveland, who gave up six runs on seven hits in a Minor League game in his previous outing, was in trouble for most of his outing Monday and was lifted after Hoffpauir's double in the fifth. Charged with five earned runs on eight hits and two walks over four-plus innings, Eveland fell to 0-3 on the spring and saw his ERA jump from 2.61 to 5.02. Non-roster righty Andrew Bailey strengthened his bid to make the team with a shutout inning to maintain his 0.00 ERA in his eighth appearance of the spring, but rotation candidate Edgar Gonzalez might have pitched his way out of contention. Brought on to start the sixth inning, he allowed eight hits before being pulled with two outs and was charged with seven runs, leaving him with a 12.75 ERA over five spring outings.
Cactus League records: Cubs 15-12; A's 12-13-1
Up next: The Cubs will host the Rockies on Tuesday, sending right-hander Chad Gaudin to the mound. The more interesting game may actually be on a back field, where Ted Lilly will work in a simulated game, his first action with the team since he and Team USA were eliminated in the World Baseball Classic. Expect to see Alfonso Soriano and Aramis Ramirez back in the lineup against Colorado.
Mychael Urban is a national reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.
WOW, 20 Runs? even if it is Spring Training, that is damn impressive