Los Angeles, CA – The Cubs threatened to ruin Joe Blanton's Dodger debut, but Hanley Ramirez delivered a game-winning single in the ninth to propel the Dodgers to a 7-6 win and a three-game sweep against the Cubs.
Blanton tossed his fourth straight quality start despite receiving a no decision. Blanton gave up two runs on five hits. The right-hander, who issued the fewest walks-per-nine coming into Sunday, walked three and struck out five.
Andre Ethier slammed a go-ahead, two-run double in the seventh and Luis Cruz also drove in a pair of runs for the Dodgers, who recorded their first three- game sweep at Dodger Stadium since May 18-20.
Anthony Rizzo hit a game-tying home run in the top of the ninth and drove in three runs for the Cubs, who have now lost five in a row.
"That was a great game to play," Rizzo said. "Both starters pitched well. Hitting a home run is always good."
After going almost five years without a major league win, Justin Germano had a lead in the sixth inning in search of his second straight win. But he and the Chicago bullpen coughed up the lead. Germano received a no decision after allowing two runs on three hits in 5 1/3 innings. He did not issue a walk and struck out three.
Rizzo slammed a 1-0 cutter over the right-field fence to tie the game against Kenley Jansen (5-3) in the ninth. It was Jansen's sixth blown save this season.
Matt Kemp walked and Ethier singled off Shawn Camp (2-5) before Ramirez lined the game-winning base hit into left field to win the game.
"That's what I'm here for," Ramirez, who was acquired from the Miami Marlins on July 25, said. "I'm not trying to do too much. I'm here to help the team win."
Rizzo lined a single up the middle to score David DeJesus, who led off with a walk, and put the Cubs up 1-0 in the first.
The Dodgers tied the game in the fifth following James Loney's one-out single. Two batters later, A.J. Ellis lined a double into the left-field corner to tie the game.
Despite starting in pitcher-friendly Dodger Stadium, Blanton still fell victim to the long ball. Welington Castillo crushed a high slider into the right- center field bleachers to give the Cubs a 2-1 lead in the sixth. Blanton has allowed the most home runs in the National League, 23.
The Dodgers tied the game in the sixth without recording a hit. Germano plunked Mark Ellis. Alberto Cabrera took over for Germano but walked Kemp, Ramirez and Juan Rivera. Luis Cruz made Chicago pay for its control problems when he lined a high fastball into left field to drive in two runs and give Los Angeles a 4-2 lead.
The Cubs rallied for three runs against Brandon League and Randy Choate to re- take the lead in the seventh. Chicago loaded the bases before Rizzo plated a run with a sacrifice fly and Soriano smashed a two-run double off the base of the left-field fence to put Chicago up, 5-4.
The Dodgers found some two-out magic in the bottom half of the frame. Mark Ellis worked a walk and Matt Kemp singled before Andre Ethier slammed a 3-2 slider off the wall in right-center field to give the Dodgers a 6-5 lead.
Brett Jackson and Josh Vitters made their major league debuts for the Cubs. Jackson went 2-for-4 and Vitters flew out in his only plate appearance as a pinch hitter...Rizzo leads National League rookies with nine home runs and 23 RBI...The Dodgers lead the all-time series against the Cubs, 1,028-1,023, covering more than 120 years...Kemp went 1-for-3 with three runs scored and extended his hitting streak to eight games.