Series: Game 1 of 3

Chi Cubs leads 1-0 (as of 7/2)

Game 1: Friday, July 2
Chi White Sox2Final
Chi Cubs6
Game 2: Saturday, July 3
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in 6
Chi Cubs4
Game 3: Sunday, July 4
Chi White Sox1Final
Chi Cubs2

White Sox 2

(42-34, 18-19 away)

Cubs 6

(44-35, 23-16 home)

3:20 PM ET, July 2, 2004

Wrigley Field, Chicago, Illinois 

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W: C. Zambrano (9-3)

L: E. Loaiza (8-4)

Zambrano leaves early but beats White Sox

CHICAGO (AP) -- Carlos Zambrano's day started with a near-miss, with umpires reversing what at first appeared to be a grand slam near the right-field foul pole.

It ended with a painful cramp in his forearm that forced him from the game.

In between, he was a force for the Chicago Cubs, pitching them over the White Sox 6-2 Friday.

"Not only was it in my right arm, but it was in my left arm after the game and in my ribs. I had a cramp. That is a signal I wasn't drinking enough water," said Zambrano, who gave up two runs and two hits in 6 1/3 innings.

Zambrano surrendered a two-run, bases-loaded double in the first to Ross Gload, who one pitch earlier nearly hit a grand slam.

Gload fouled off three straight 3-2 pitches from Zambrano and then sent a drive that cleared the wall close by the right-field corner.

First base umpire and crew chief Charlie Reliford signaled fair ball and as Gload trotted around the bases with an apparent slam, Sammy Sosa raced in from right and manager Dusty Baker from the dugout to argue.

Reliford then huddled with his fellow umpires in the infield and the call was reversed -- replays showed the ball was foul -- sending White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen out to argue.

After the game, the umpires said it was a joint decision but wouldn't comment further.

"Just a little bit, but it was foul," Sosa said.

"We were saying, 'Go foul, go foul,' " Baker said. "Fortunately for us, that wind was blowing left to right and it missed the foul pole. I said, 'Charlie, man, that ball was foul.' And he said, 'No Dusty, it looked like it was fair.' And he said, `Let me confer with my colleagues.'

"They got together and they got the call right. That was a huge play, I mean 4-0 and I've seen them go off to the races. We were lucky to get out of there with two runs."

Gload returned to the plate and drove a two-run double to left. The only other hit off Zambrano was a single by Timo Perez in the second.

The White Sox didn't get another hit until Paul Konerko doubled in the ninth off LaTroy Hawkins.

"They get paid to get it right," Gload said of the umpires. "It's hard to say. To tell the truth now, it probably was just right off. I don't know how close -- 2 feet, 2 inches. I really couldn't tell. I hit it and it was fair -- it started fair, so I thought there was a chance."

Even Guillen had no complaints after the game.

"He made the right call. If he didn't make the right call, I would be watching the game on TV," Guillen said. "Up by four in the first and we have [Esteban] Loaiza in there. That's more cushion, but unfortunately the ball was foul."

Gload had a part in another big play in the bottom of the second when he dropped Derrek Lee's fly ball for an error. Aramis Ramirez, who had doubled, scored on the play.

Mark Grudzielanek singled and Corey Patterson doubled in the third off Loaiza (8-4), and Sosa hit a go-ahead, two-run single, with Patterson scoring on a hard slide as catcher Jamie Burke couldn't hold a throw.

Zambrano hit a sacrifice fly in the fourth to score Michael Barrett, who doubled and moved up on a fly by Ramon Martinez. Barrett made it 5-2 with a sacrifice fly, and Grudzielanek added an RBI single in the eighth.

Baker went out to check on Zambrano in the sixth before when the cramps started to bother the pitcher.

Zambrano went back out in the seventh and finished with 123 pitches.

Francis Beltran replaced Zambrano and pitched 1 2/3 scoreless innings.

Loaiza, who had won four straight decisions since May 15, gave up five runs and eight hits in six innings.

Game notes

Cubs 3B Ramirez left in the seventh with a strained right groin following a hard slide into third base an inning earlier. He could miss a couple of days. ...The White Sox lead the series 22-18 and have won the last four series against the Cubs. They won two of three games last weekend at home. ... Konerko got the nod over Frank Thomas at first base. He drove in nine runs against the Cubs last weekend. Thomas, usually the DH, was in an 8-for-43 slump over his last 14 games. He struck out as a pinch hitter in the seventh against Beltran.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press