Cubs rally to wild, windy win over Angels
Bryan LaHair's single to right scored Fernando Perez from third base with two outs in the ninth inning, lifting the Chicago Cubs to a wild 14-13 Cactus League win over the Angels at windy HoHoKam Park on Monday.
The rally was the second in as many innings for the Cubs, wiping out what was once a 10-run Angels lead and negating splendid performances by pitcher Dan Haren and slugger Mark Trumbo.
Haren didn't allow a ball to be hit out of the infield in his three-inning stint and Trumbo nearly hit two balls out of the state to help the Angels build a 12-2 lead after 5 1/2 innings.
Fernando Rodney, who followed Haren to the mound, wasn't nearly as sharp. The right-hander, who may soon be fighting to hang on to his closer's job, gave up two runs on five hits while getting three outs. This spring Rodney has faced 17 batters and more than half of them have reached base, seven on hits and two on walks.
But there were no struggles for the Angels on offense, especially when Trumbo was at the plate. The first baseman, competing for the final spot on the opening day roster, went four for four with three runs scored and two driven in. One of his hits was a mammoth home run over a four-story-high scoreboard that sits behind a grass berm well beyond the left-field wall. It was his third home run of the spring.
Brandon Wood also had a big day, igniting the Angels' eight-run rally in the third with a two-run double before hitting a game-tying home run to lead off the ninth inning.
The Angels appeared to be cruising before their bullpen imploded, allowing the Cubs to go ahead for the first time in eighth on a bases-loaded double by Max Ramirez.
Minor-league reliever Ryan Braun had an especially rough day for the Angels, giving up four runs on five hits and a walk without retiring a batter in the sixth inning.
Alberto Callaspo had three hits and Wood, Howie Kendrick, Bobby Wilson and minor leaguer Chris Pettit had two each for the Angels. Pettit drove in two runs while Wilson scored twice for the Angels, who had a spring-best 19 hits.
Luis Montanez, Marlon Byrd, Josh Vitters, Matt Camp and Ramirez had two hits each for the Cubs, who also got three RBIs from Camp and Ramirez and a grand slam from nonroster invitee Scott Moore. Chicago had 18 hits and went eight for 13 with runners in scoring position.
-- Kevin Baxter in Mesa, Ariz.
Photo: Angels catcher Bobby Wilson tags out Cubs outfielder Marlon Byrd in the fourth inning of a spring training game on Monday. Credit: Matt York / Associated Press