(Saturday, July 28th)
Final Score: Chicago 3, St. Louis 2
Chicago, IL (Sports Network) - Tony Campana scored the go-ahead run on a Reed Johnson bunt in the bottom of the seventh inning, and the Chicago Cubs held on to beat the St. Louis Cardinals, 3-2, in the middle test of a three-game series at Wrigley Field.
Alfonso Soriano hit a two-run triple in the first for Chicago, which snapped a two-game slide.
Daniel Descalso lofted a game-tying sacrifice fly in the sixth for the Cardinals, who were looking to match a season high with their fifth straight win.
Both starters overcame shaky first innings and turned in quality outings.
Chicago's Jeff Samardzija walked the bases loaded to begin the game, but limited the damage to a Carlos Beltran run-scoring fielder's choice.
"Anytime you have bases loaded no outs, you're hoping to come away with more than one run," Descalso said.
The first two Cubs reached base against St. Louis rookie right-hander Joe Kelly (1-4) in the home first as David DeJesus singled and Starlin Castro doubled. After Anthony Rizzo popped out, Soriano put Chicago on top with his first triple of the season.
St. Louis tied the game after loading the bases with one out in the sixth. Samardzija issued walks to Lance Berkman and Matt Carpenter around a Yadier Molina single, but the Cardinals mustered only one run on Descalso's fly ball to the warning track in right field.
Kelly, who retired 14 batters in a row at one point, walked Bryan LaHair to lead off the seventh. A pinch-running Campana stole second and advanced to third on a Geovany Soto single.
After Jeff Baker lined out to second, Brian Fuentes replaced Kelly and struck out Luis Valbuena. Johnson, pinch-hitting for reliever James Russell (4-0), dropped down a bunt along the third-base line, scoring Campana.
DeJesus followed with a walk, loading the bases for Castro, who hit a grounder to shortstop. Castro appeared to beat the throw to first, but umpire Mike Winters called him out to end the inning. Chicago manager Dale Sveum was subsequently ejected for arguing the call that denied his team another run.
Shawn Camp pitched around a two-out walk to Molina in the eighth and Carlos Marmol stranded a runner in scoring position in the ninth to notch his 13th save.
"I really like how we're playing baseball right now," Samardzija said. "It's fun to come to the park."
Samardzija gave up three hits, walked six and struck out seven in six innings...Kelly allowed five hits and recorded six strikeouts over 6 1/3 innings...The Cubs snapped their five-game losing streak against the Cardinals...St. Louis was 0-for-9 with runners in scoring position and left nine men on base.
07/28 18:15:26 ET