Houston, TX – Alfonso Soriano went 3-for-4 with a home run and two RBI, leading the Chicago Cubs to a 5-1 victory over the Houston Astros in the rubber match of a three-game series.
Dave Sappelt also had three hits, including a line drive in the eighth that forced Astros reliever Mickey Storey out of the game after the ball ricocheted off his face. Storey was able to leave the field under his own power.
"The best thing I can take from this is that it didn't hit somewhere worse," Storey said. "Initially, it was shock and hurt, but I think I'll be all right. Hopefully, I'll be back out there soon."
Travis Wood (6-11) won his second straight start after allowing just one run on four hits and one walk over 7 2/3 innings.
"When we got him, we knew he had some arm strength and arm speed and could do some things," Cubs manager Dale Sveum said of Wood, who was acquired in the offseason by Chicago.
Houston starter Fernando Abad (0-4) was pulled with one away in the fourth, having given up a run on four hits and three walks.
The Astros, looking for consecutive wins for the first time since mid-August, pulled within 4-1 on Fernando Martinez's pinch-hit, RBI single in the eighth.
But the bases were left loaded, and Carlos Marmol struck out the side in the ninth to close out Chicago's fifth win in six games.
Welington Castillo singled in Darwin Barney with two away in the first, and Soriano blasted Chuckie Fick's payoff pitch over the wall in left to make it 2-0 in the fifth.
Soriano added an RBI single down the third-base line in the seventh, and the Cubs scored again following Storey's scary injury.
Jose Valdez entered for Storey and was greeted by Anthony Recker sending a gapper to right, which plated Sappelt from first.
Tony Campana pinch-ran for Soriano following his one-out double in the ninth, stole third and scored on Chris Snyder's throwing error.
The Cubs went .500 on their 10-game road trip ... The Astros have not won consecutive series since taking sets from the Mets and Cardinals on April 30- May 6 ... Soriano, who has 29 homers, has driven in 96 runs, his highest total since 2005 when he was with the Rangers.