CHICAGO – A steady rain pelted Wrigley Field much of Friday morning, leading to puddles on the warning track and chilly temperatures. The nasty weather also put the Chicago Cubs' game against the Los Angeles Dodgers in doubt.
Unfortunately for Casey Coleman and the Cubs, they got this one in.
Coleman failed to make it out of the third inning and Chicago went on to a 12-2 loss to the surging Dodgers.
"I don't think I've seen Casey like that since he got here last year," manager Mike Quade said. "Just looked completely out of sync from the get-go."
Juan Uribe hit a two-run homer and finished with four RBIs for the Dodgers, who set season highs for runs and hits (14). Andre Ethier extended his major league-best hitting streak to 19 games and pinch-hitter Marcus Thames added a two-run drive in the ninth.
"There's going to be times where you're inconsistent and that was definitely it today," Coleman said.
Uribe also had a run-scoring single in the Dodgers' six-run third inning and a sacrifice fly in the sixth, giving him nine RBIs in his last three games and 12 this year.
"I feel real good right now," he said. "Before, I wasn't hitting. Now, I'm helping my team."
Chad Billingsley (2-1) made the most of the run support, pitching into the seventh inning in his second straight solid start. He also capped Los Angeles' biggest inning of the year with an RBI single for his first hit in 2011.
"The guy knows how to pitch for sure, and, like most veteran guys, knows how to pitch with a lead," Quade said.
The Dodgers have won five of six, including three straight since Major League Baseball seized control of the team. Commissioner Bud Selig told owner Frank McCourt on Wednesday he will appoint a representative to oversee all aspects of the business and the day-to-day operations of the club.
Darwin Barney hit an RBI single for the Cubs, who have scored four runs or fewer in each of their last four games. Kosuke Fukudome, batting leadoff for the sixth time this season, had three singles and walked.
Los Angeles grabbed control in the third and chased Coleman (1-1). Ethier had an RBI single, A.J. Ellis drove in two with a base hit to center and Jerry Sands' bases-loaded walk forced in another run.
"I didn't do a good job of slowing down the game, like you should," Coleman said. "I had it in my mind I was going to make that one pitch to get out of the inning. ... I was so ready to get it and get out of that inning that I got myself in too much of a hurry."
Ethier went 1 for 2, walked twice and scored. The All-Star right fielder is batting .417 (30 for 72) with two homers and 10 RBIs during his career-best hitting streak.
Coleman was booed as he walked off the mound after Billingsley's two-out hit made it 6-0. The 23-year-old right-hander issued four of Chicago's 10 walks and yielded six hits in the shortest of his 11 major league starts.
"Just a tough day for him," Quade said.
Billingsley gave up two runs — one earned — and seven hits in 6 1-3 innings, improving to 3-0 in his last three starts against the Cubs. He was coming off a masterful outing against St. Louis when he struck out 11 over eight shutout innings in a 2-1 victory.
Prior to the game, Dodgers general manager Ned Colletti said he is operating under the same budgetary guidelines he had before Selig's announcement and he reports to owner Frank McCourt until an administrator is appointed.
The Dodgers have been consumed by infighting since Jamie McCourt filed for divorce after 30 years of marriage in October 2009, one week after her husband fired her as the team's chief executive.
All the turmoil off the field doesn't seem to be affecting the team.
"We're concentrating on what we have to do," Billingsley said. "What it takes for each game to get ready. That's the only thing we can control."
Notes: Quade said the Cubs may have to make a move in the next couple days to add another arm to their bullpen. Chicago was coming off a doubleheader split against the San Diego Padres on Wednesday. ... Cubs RHP Andrew Cashner played catch for the first time since he was sidelined by a strain in the back of his right rotator cuff. He estimated he made about 30 or 40 throws, including some from 60 feet. "Everything was good," he said. Cashner is expected play catch again Saturday. ... Quade isn't ready to commit to a starting pitcher for Tuesday's game against Colorado. "We'll see in the next day or two, but I have nothing right now," he said before the loss to the Dodgers.