Cubs 4, Brewers 2

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MILWAUKEE (AP)—Dusty Baker knew Jerome Williams could give the Chicago Cubs a lift.

Williams won his Cubs debut, and Derrek Lee and Aramis Ramirez homered in a 4-2 victory over the Milwaukee Brewers on Tuesday night.

Williams (1-2) made his first major league start since being acquired from the San Francisco Giants with pitcher David Aardsma for reliever LaTroy Hawkins and cash on May 28.

“That’s the Jerome Williams I had seen in San Francisco,” Baker said. “Had it not been for Billy Hall, he might have shut them out.”

Baker, who managed the Giants from 1993-02, followed Williams’ career after he was drafted in 1999. After parts of five seasons in the minors, Williams made it to the majors in 2003.

The Cubs hope Williams, who was 17-14 for the Giants, can fill in at least until injured right-handers Mark Prior and Kerry Wood return from the disabled list, possibly before the All-Star break.

Called up from Triple-A Iowa earlier in the day, Williams showed he might be able to do just that.

“He kept us close until we could score some runs, which we did,” Baker said.

It was the 23-year-old right-hander’s first big league start since April 24, when he allowed six runs over five innings in an 8-5 loss to the Brewers with the Giants.

Williams allowed two runs and three hits in seven innings. He walked four and struck out a season-high six.

Ryan Dempster got three outs for his 10th save in 11 chances, retiring pinch-hitter Jeff Cirillo with two on to end it.

Hall was the only Brewers batter to get to Williams. Hall hit a solo homer in the second. In the fourth, he hit the first pitch, another solo drive to left, for his first career multihomer game and a career-high 10 homers this season.

“Two swings of the bat, and they get the win,” Hall said, referring to the two-run homers hit by Lee and Ramirez. “I had two swings of the bat with the same result, just not enough men on base.”

Milwaukee starter Victor Santos (2-7) certainly deserved better.

He retired nine consecutive batters after Todd Hollandsworth’s one-out single in the first before Lee reached on shortstop J.J. Hardy’s error in the fourth.

Center fielder Brady Clark, whose error in the seventh allowed the Cubs to score the deciding run Monday night, caught Jeromy Burnitz’s long fly and threw out Lee, who was trying to advance to second.

Santos stayed in command as he retired the next six Cubs, but the Brewers’ defense doomed him in the seventh.

Hollandsworth tripled over the head of right fielder Geoff Jenkins, who got turned around on the play. The ball deflected off Jenkins’ glove and rolled to the wall. Then Lee hit the first pitch from Santos for his 20th homer, tying it at 2.

Rookie second baseman Rickie Weeks booted Burnitz’s grounder for an error, and Ramirez sent the next pitch 434 feet to left-center, putting the Cubs ahead 4-2 and sending their visiting fans into a frenzy.

“We got to get better defensively, no matter what,” Hall said.

Lee and Ramirez also homered in Monday night’s 5-4 win at Miller Park.

Santos went seven innings. He was looking for his first win after two no-decisions in three starts against the Cubs this season.

“The guy on the other side, Santos, he’s been tough on us,” Baker said. “I’m just glad we got him.”

The Cubs and Williams had a bit of a brief scare in the third when Prince Fielder lined a grounder off the pitcher’s leg. The ball rolled to shortstop Enrique Wilson, who made the play to first.

Williams had his left calf heavily bandaged after the game.


Fielder played first base for the first time in his big league career. He pinch-hit in Monday night’s loss to the Cubs and was a designated hitter in four interleague games earlier this month. … Cubs CF Corey Patterson got the night off, until he pinch-hit for Williams in the eighth. He was batting .105 (2-for-19) against Santos. … Asked how intentional walks might affect Lee, Baker recalled some 30-year-old advice from Hank Aaron, a former Atlanta teammate. Aaron told Baker “not to take it personally. It’s a strategic move.” … Williams, who went 10-7 with a 4.24 ERA with the Giants last season, was 1-1 with a 2.22 ERA in four games with Iowa.

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