Thursday, May 27, 2010
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Loney leads Dodgers over Cubs

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[May 27, 2010]  CHICAGO (AP) -- Chad Billingsley won his fourth consecutive start and James Loney had three hits as the Los Angeles Dodgers beat the Chicago Cubs 8-5 on Wednesday night.

Loney was a home run short of the cycle and Casey Blake homered and drove in two runs for the Dodgers, who won for 15th time in 21 games

Jonathan Broxton got five outs for his 11th save in 13 opportunities.

The game was delayed for 18 minutes in top of the fourth inning after a nearby fire caused the lights to go out at Wrigley Field.

Billingsley (6-2) allowed three runs and a season-high 10 hits, struck out six and walked one. He threw 100 pitches on a humid Chicago night.

Xavier Nady hit a pinch-hit homer for the Cubs, who committed three errors and had a three-game winning streak snapped.

After getting shut out on Tuesday by a strong performance from Cubs starter Ryan Dempster, the Dodgers wasted no time against Wednesday starter Tom Gorzelanny.

Rafael Furcal opened the game with a single and Russell Martin walked. The runners advanced on Matt Kemp's groundout and Manny Ramirez followed with a hard grounder to third to score Furcal. Blake hit an RBI double then scored on Loney's single.


In the second, Gorzelanny walked Billingsley with one out, then with two outs, Martin hit a routine bouncer to third baseman Mike Fontenot, who made a wild throw into the seats. With the runners advancing to the second and third on the error, Kemp doubled to left-center to give the Dodgers a 5-0 lead.

Gorzelanny (2-5) is likely the odd man out of the rotation when Carlos Zambrano is expected to make his return to the rotation after a short stint as a reliever. He pitched five-plus innings and gave up a season-high seven runs, five earned, and seven hits.

A bank of lights behind home plate went out as Gorzelanny released a 3-1 pitch to Blake DeWitt. Home plate umpire Wally Bell called the pitch a ball and granted DeWitt first base on the walk. As Dewitt was jogging down the first-base line, the rest of the stadium lights went out. The game was halted at 8:25 p.m. and resumed 18 minutes later.

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Leading 5-2 in the sixth, Billingsley got more insurance when Loney led off with a triple and scored on Reed Johnson's double. Johnson scored after second baseman Ryan Theriot made an errant throw to the plate on Furcal's soft bouncer.

Nady homered in the sixth off Billingsley.

Leading 7-3 in the seventh, the Cubs cut into the lead thanks to Ramirez's lackadaisical outfield play. After Derrek Lee singled, Alfonso Soriano hit what looked to be a catchable ball in left, but Ramirez nonchalantly jogged in and was not able to get in position to catch it. Ramirez then had trouble picking up the ball allowing Lee to third and Soriano to second. One out later, pinch-hitter Jeff Baker hit a deep fly to the left-field warning-track, again, Ramirez took his time getting to the a ball and Baker ended up with a two-run triple.

Blake hit his seventh homer in the ninth off reliever James Russell to make it 8-5.

NOTES: Cubs manager Lou Piniella said Zambrano will be available for relief duty on Thursday against the Dodgers and over the weekend during the three-game series against St. Louis. Zambrano is expected to start in one of three games against Pittsburgh next week. ... Cubs 3B Aramis Ramirez was out of the lineup for the third straight game with a bruised left thumb. ... Dodgers manager Joe Torre isn't sure if OF Andre Ethier will be back in the lineup Sunday when he is eligible to return. Torre said Ethier may play a rehab game or two before returning to major league action. ... It was the first delay because of power failure at Wrigley since 2003. The Cubs had two games delayed due to power failures that year.

[Associated Press]

Copyright 2010 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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