Phillies 4, Cubs 3
CHICAGO (AP)—Larry Bowa and the Phillies finally got some breaks.
“When you’re going bad things happen—balls get by, base hits get by, pitches just miss, umpires just miss a call—you hope something like this gets us going,” Philadelphia manager Bowa said.
Minutes after the game was complete the Cubs acquired five-time All-Star shortstop Nomar Garciaparra in a blockbuster four-team trade involving the Boston Red Sox, Minnesota Twins and the Montreal Expos.
The Cubs gave up shortstop Alex Gonzalez and a pair of minor leaguers. They also acquired Class-A outfielder Matt Murton and cash considerations from Boston.
The Cubs are 1 1/2 games back in the wild-card race and they are counting on Garciaparra to give them an extra boost.
“He’s a great player. His accomplishments and his abilities speak for themselves,” Cubs general manager Jim Hendry said. “Obviously he is a tremendous, tremendous player and I think he is capable of giving us a huge shot in the arm down the stretch.”
Hendry hopes Garciaparra will be in the lineup Sunday afternoon when Greg Maddux goes for his 300th victory.
“I have not talked to him yet. He is not too far up the road in Minneapolis, so hopefully he will be here. I’m sure Dusty (Baker) will be glad to see him,” Hendry said.
The Phillies trailed Atlanta by a half game in the NL East when they were swept in a four-game series by the Florida Marlins before losing 10-7 to the Cubs on Friday night. They entered Saturday 4 1/2 games back.
Kevin Millwood (9-6) pitched 6 2-3 solid innings, retiring 10 of the last 11 batters he faced. He allowed three runs—two earned—and three hits while striking out eight and walking three.
“We needed a big win today. To come away with the victory here was big for me but it was big for our team more than anything,” Millwood said.
Millwood tweaked his elbow, but doesn’t figure to miss a start.
“I had a little stiffness late in the game. I didn’t want to take a chance of hurting it, or take a chance of giving up the lead,” he said.
Tim Worrell pitched the ninth for his 11th save in 15 chances.
Todd Jones got Sammy Sosa to flyout to end the eighth inning in his Philadelphia debut. Jones was acquired in a trade Friday with the Cincinnati Reds for right-hander Josh Hancock and a minor leaguer.
Jason Michaels reached safely on a fielding error by Cubs second baseman Todd Walker in the second inning, and three pitches later Lieberthal followed with his 12th homer into the left-field bleachers.
The Cubs tied it in the bottom half. Millwood allowed back-to-back walks to Moises Alou and Derrek Lee leading off and Aramis Ramirez followed with an opposite field RBI-single to right driving in Alou. Lee scored on Michael Barrett’s grounder.
The Phillies took advantage of another Chicago error in the third inning. Chase Utley hit a grounder to first base that went between Lee’s legs. Abreu followed with a drive to center for his 23rd homer, breaking a 2-all tie.
The Cubs benefited from an error in their half of the third when center fielder Michaels couldn’t handle Sosa’s two-out line drive for a two-base error. Sosa scored on Alou’s RBI double, cutting the Phillies lead to 4-3.
Matt Clement (8-10), who hasn’t won back-to-back starts since May 1 and 6 despite a 3.03 ERA, pitched well again. He struck out 10 and walked just one, allowed four runs—two earned—and four hits in seven innings. Clement retired 13 straight after giving up Abreu’s homer in the third inning.
“The two mistakes I made all day and they hit them out. I guess you don’t deserve to win if you make mistakes,” Clement said. ^Notes: Felix Rodriguez, who was acquired by Philadelphia in a separate trade Friday with San Francisco for Ricky Ledee and a minor pitcher, was not with the club. The Phillies are hopeful Rodriguez will join the team Sunday. … Phillies OF Marlon Byrd was recalled from Triple-A Scranton. … The Cubs season attendance is now up to 2,007,402, the first time in the club’s history they surpassed the two million mark in July.