Saturday, August 15, 2009
Sports NewsMayfield's Mutterings: A season of potential

Lee's 7 RBIs help Cubs snap slump with 17-2 romp

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[August 15, 2009]  CHICAGO (AP) -- Derrek Lee matched a career high with seven RBIs and capped a 10-run burst in the second inning Friday as the Chicago Cubs snapped their five-game losing streak with a 17-2 romp over the Pittsburgh Pirates.

InsuranceThe Cubs led 14-0 after two innings. The last time they scored so many runs so quickly was June 7, 1906 - 10 years before they moved into Wrigley Field.

Lee had a three-run double, a two-run double, an RBI single and a bases-loaded walk, all in four innings before being removed with the score 17-2. He also had seven RBIs on July 2 against Milwaukee.

The Cubs sent 15 batters to the plate and every starter scored at least once in their first double-digit inning since 2004. Winning pitcher Randy Wells scored twice, and Lee's double finished the outburst.

Still, the Cubs' loud bats had to compete for their fans' attention with the earsplitting sound of U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds flying overhead in preparation for Saturday's Chicago Air & Water Show.

The Pirates have lost three in a row and 11 of 12. Charlie Morton (2-6) gave up 10 runs in one-plus inning before getting relieved by Chris Bootcheck, who allowed seven more runs in 2 1-3 innings.

After averaging 3.4 runs in losing seven of their previous eight games, the Cubs scored four in a first inning highlighted by Kosuke Fukudome's three-run homer.

Even though Milton Bradley (sore hip) and Aramis Ramirez (cold) were late scratches, the Cubs had their highest-scoring game since beating Milwaukee 19-5 on April 30, 2008.

The last-place Pirates hadn't allowed as many runs since losing 19-4 to St. Louis on May 20, 2000. They last surrendered 10 runs in an inning on Sept. 7, 2008, at San Francisco.

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Wells (9-5) did more than hold the Pirates to two runs in six innings. The rookie also walked and had an RBI single in the big inning and later added a double.

The game began a stretch in which the Cubs will play 28 of 33 games against teams with losing records. They are 40-22 against such teams, 19-33 against teams playing better than .500 ball. The Cubs opened play Friday 4 1/2 games behind St. Louis in the NL Central.

NOTES: Cubs LHP Tom Gorzelanny, whose foot was injured when struck by a hard grounder last week, said he was ready to start Saturday's game against the Pirates, his former team. ... The crowd of 41,619 was the Cubs' largest this season. ... Wells is 5-1 with a 1.98 ERA against NL Central teams. ... Cubs manager Lou Piniella said he would split playing time between catchers Koyie Hill and 2008 NL Rookie of the Year Geovany Soto. The Cubs are 29-19 when Hill starts. ... Slumping Cubs LF Alfonso Soriano had an RBI single in the second but was booed after he struck out later in the inning. ... Fukudome's 10th homer matched his total from last season, when he was a rookie.

[Associated Press]

Copyright 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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