Villanueva’s strong start wasted as Dodgers sweep Cubs with 1-0 win
BY TONI GINNETTI firstname.lastname@example.org August 4, 2013 4:44PM
Updated: August 4, 2013 6:11PM
The Los Angeles Dodgers remained hot and the Cubs ice cold Sunday.
The Dodgers won their 14th straight road game with a 1-0 victory at Wrigley Field, completing a four-game sweep of the Cubs, who finished the eight-game home stand with only one victory.
``We got shut out three times in seven [losses] at home and scored two in another one,’’ manager Dale Sveum said. ``It’s very difficult to win unless you’re scoring runs. We didn’t have a lot going [offensively].’’
Cubs starter Carlos Villanueva (2-8) had one of his best games, holding the Dodgers to one run on two hits through six innings. The lone run scored when he walked Hanley Ramirez to lead the second, Ramirez later scoring on a single by A.J. Ellis.
Villanueva walked three and struck out five in taking the loss.
``I’ve felt good my last couple starts,’’ he said. ``When I ran into trouble I was able to limit the damage. But it is what it is. We ran into a hot team.’’
The Cubs had seven hits off Dodgers starter Stephen Fife, who was activated from the disabled list Sunday. Fife (4-3) worked 5 1/3 innings, walking two (one intentionally) with five strikeouts.
The Cubs’ best chance to score came in the sixth when Dioner Navarro and Nate Schierholtz singled off Fife. Cody Ransom didn’t attempt to advance them by bunting and struck out. But rookie Logan Watkins got his first major league hit with a bloop single just beyond the reach of shortstop Hanley Ramirez.
With the bases loaded, reliever Chris Withrow entered and got Donnie Murphy to pop out in the infield and got pinch hitter Cole Gillespie to ground out.
The series saw the Dodgers’ top two hitters get hurt making defensive plays. Shortstop Ramirez hurt his right shoulder in the seventh tumbling into the seats to catch David DeJesus’ pop up. He left the game.
On Saturday, rookie star Yasiel Puig left the game after hurting his left thumb making a diving catch of a Starlin Castro fly to right field. Puig didn’t play Sunday and is day to day.
Castro and second baseman Darwin Barney were given the day off Sunday, replaced by Murphy at short and Watkins at second. Murphy was recalled from Class AAA Iowa on Saturday to replace Julio Borbon and Watkins on Sunday as Luis Valbuena was placed on the disabled list with a strained oblique.