CHICAGO – Justin Ruggiano’s two-out, two-run double broke a tie in the seventh inning to lead the Chicago Cubs to a 5-3 victory over the Washington Nationals on Thursday night.
Starlin Castro had two RBI, and Anthony Rizzo went 3 for 4 with two doubles and a run scored.
The Cubs had dropped four of five games before the win.
Denard Span went 2 for 4 with two doubles and two RBI for the Nationals.
Neither starter was involved in the decision. The Cubs’ Travis Wood gave up three runs on seven hits in 6 2/3 innings and was hurt most by five walks. Washington’s Doug Fister also gave up three runs on seven hits.
Cubs reliever Neil Ramirez (1-1) got the win and Hector Rondon pitched a perfect ninth for his ninth save.
Cubs center fielder Junior Lake had to leave in the second inning after crashing into a door in the outside wall at Wrigley Field chasing a drive by Ryan Zimmerman. The wall is not covered with ivy. The Cubs said Lake has shown no signs of a concussion and has some bruises, including one on his head.
The Cubs opened the scoring with three runs in the fourth by bunching hits. Ruggiano’s lead-off grounder surprisingly was scored a hit when third baseman Anthony Rendon threw well wide of first.
Rizzo followed with a double. Castro, who took over the team lead in RBI on Wednesday, added to his total with a two-run single. One out later, Welington Castillo singled to drive in Castro.
PIRATES 5, METS 2: In Pittsburgh, hot-hitting rookie Gregory Polanco homered and drove in four runs, and right-hander Vance Worley pitched seven stingy innings to lead Pittsburgh.
Polanco drove in the game’s first run with a groundout in the first inning, then lined a three-run homer into the right-field stands off Daisuke Matsuzaka in the fifth to put the Pirates ahead 5-1. The right fielder went 2 for 3 with a walk and is hitting .338 in 16 games since being called up from Triple-A Indianapolis on June 10.
ANGELS 6, TWINS 4: In Anaheim, Mike Trout and Albert Pujols drove in two runs apiece, and Jered Weaver pitched seven strong innings as Los Angeles completed a perfect homestand.
Pujols had three hits, and Josh Hamilton drove in a run to help the Angels win their sixth straight and move a season-best 11 games over .500 (44-33).
ASTROS 6, BRAVES 1: In Houston, Matt Dominguez hit a slump with a three-run home run, and rookie George Springer also homered to back up seven strong innings by Jarred Cosart to lead Houston.