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Cubs Don’t Back Down to Giants

From Associated Press

Alex Gonzalez didn’t need to hear that the Chicago Cubs wanted to win for Dusty Baker -- it was just known.

Gonzalez hit his first two home runs of the season, including a three-run, tiebreaking shot in the 10th at Pacific Bell Park, leading the Chicago Cubs to a 5-1 victory over the San Francisco Giants on Thursday and giving Baker a series win against his former team.

“Coming in, it was hard not to know,” Gonzalez said. “We were aware of our surroundings. It was awesome. [I’m happy] any way I can score run runs up in the lineup like I am.”

The Cubs took two of three from Baker’s former team in a series that got testy at the end.

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Both benches cleared in the third after Cub starter Mark Prior plunked slugger Barry Bonds in the upper right leg on a 1-1 curveball. Bonds, hit twice on breaking pitches by Kerry Wood on Tuesday, began walking to the mound and Prior motioned him on as they exchanged words.

“I’m sure it could have gotten heated. I wasn’t going to back down from him at all,” Prior said. “Just because he’s got 15-20 years in the big leagues and 600 homers and I have been in the league a little under a year doesn’t mean I have to stop doing what makes me a professional.”

Players came running out of both dugouts. No punches were thrown. Baker reached Bonds and talked to him for several moments, telling him it wasn’t intentional.

Bonds walked off when asked about it after the game.

Atlanta 8, Houston 7 -- Pinch-hitter Mark DeRosa came through with a two-run homer in the ninth inning at Houston, and the Braves completed a three-game sweep. Lance Berkman tied a career high with six runs batted in for Houston.

St. Louis 6, New York 5 -- Jim Edmonds homered off Scott Strickland (0-2) with one out in the 10th inning at St. Louis and the Cardinals completed a three-game sweep.

Cincinnati 7, Colorado 2 -- Jeff Austin (1-1) took a two-hit shutout into the seventh inning in his second career start, and Aaron Boone and Jose Guillen each hit two-run homers for the Reds at Denver.

Montreal 5, Milwaukee 0 -- Zach Day threw a three-hitter for his first career shutout and the Expos finished a three-game sweep at Milwaukee.

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Pittsburgh 5, San Diego 2 -- Jack Wilson hit a three-run homer off Jake Peavy (4-2) and Kip Wells pitched into the eighth inning to lead the Pirates to a three-game sweep at San Diego.

Florida 4, Arizona 3 -- Brian Banks, a seventh-inning defensive replacement, homered to lead off the eighth and lift the Marlins over the Diamondbacks at Phoenix.


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