Chicago, IL (Sports Network) – Alfonso Soriano and Starlin Castro each knocked in two runs, as the Chicago Cubs defeated Oakland, 6-2, in the middle contest of a three-game interleague series at Wrigley Field.
Derrek Lee and Xavier Nady both registered two hits and one RBI for the Cubs, who won for just the fifth time in their last 15 games. Ryan Dempster (5-5) gave up two runs on eight hits and two walks with seven strikeouts over 6 2/3 innings.
Oakland starter Gio Gonzalez (6-5) yielded six runs on eight hits and three walks in five innings. The Athletics have lost four of their last five games.
The A’s took a 1-0 lead in the first inning when Conor Jackson, acquired in a trade from Arizona on Tuesday, led off with a single, hustled to third on a base hit by Daric Barton and scored on Ryan Sweeney’s sacrifice fly.
Lee homered to left field off Gonzalez to begin the second, and Castro added a run-scoring single later in the inning that put Chicago in front.
Gonzalez escaped a bases-loaded jam in the fourth, allowing just one run on a sac fly by Castro. Chicago, though, widened the gap in the next frame as Nady singled home Jeff Baker and scored along with Marlon Byrd on a double by Soriano.
Barton had an RBI groundout in the seventh, but Sean Marshall and Carlos Marmol combined to allow just one hit the rest of the way in relief of Dempster.
Jackson had two hits and a walk…Oakland finished 1-for-8 with runners in scoring position…A’s third baseman Kevin Kouzmanoff went 0-for-3 to snap his hitting streak at a career-high 15 games.