• Goat: Brett Myers gave up Murton's hit, walked Ronny Cedeno and then gave an intentional pass to Jacque Jones before uncorking the wild pitch.
• Figure this: The Cubs haven't been in first place on Aug. 1 since 2003 when they came within five outs of the World Series.
• Quotable: "You can't make too much out of it on the first of August." -- Cubs manager Lou Piniella on the Cubs taking over first place
-- ESPN.com news services
Cubs 5, Phillies 4
CHICAGO (AP) -- Matt Murton got the call to come back from the
minors less than a week ago and already he's helped the Chicago
Cubs climb into first place.
Murton raced home on Brett Myers' bases-loaded wild pitch in the
ninth inning Wednesday night, sending the Cubs to a 5-4 victory
over the Philadelphia Phillies and lifting them to the top of the
"Some things in the past we got to leave behind us," said
Murton, who had a 39-game stint at Triple-A. "It's just a great
feeling to be around a winning ball club and have a chance to play
The Cubs, who were 8½ games behind on June 23, finally overcame
the Milwaukee Brewers -- at least for a day. Chicago's win, coupled
with the Mets' 8-5 win at Milwaukee, puts the Cubs a percentage
point ahead of the Brewers.
"You can't make too much out of it on the first of August,"
Cubs manager Lou Piniella said. "We've got a lot of baseball to
play. We can't get caught up in it."
Murton started the ninth with a sinking liner to left that
defensive replacement Jayson Werth dove for but couldn't hold.
Werth had come off the DL earlier in the day and just entered the
Murton hustled into second for a leadoff double and made third
on Myers' wild pitch as Ronny Cedeno tried to bunt.
After Cedeno walked, Myers (1-3) also walked Jacque Jones
intentionally to load the bases. Jason Kendall struck out, but with
a 1-1 count on pinch-hitter Cliff Floyd, Myers unleashed the wild
pitch that gave the Cubs the win.
"When I hit the ball I thought there was an opportunity for it
to fall in and I was just kind of reading the play," Murton said.
"And when I saw it pop loose and he was on the ground, I knew I
had a good opportunity to get to second base."
Werth thought initially he'd hung on.
"I looked in my glove to take the ball out and it wasn't
there," Werth said.
Myers blamed himself for the loss.
"You can write I stink if you want," he said. "I feel like
that was my best pitch to get Cliff out right there. He didn't
swing at it and it got past Carlos [Ruiz]. ... Normally, nine times
out of 10 Carlos blocks that ball. It was a freaky game from the
After Jones made a great diving catch to rob
Tadahito Iguchi of
a hit leading off the ninth, the Phillies still threatened.
Philadelphia dropped into third place, four games behind the
Mets in the NL East.
Cubs starter Rich Hill, batting just .108, hit an RBI single in
the second to score Kendall, who had doubled, putting the Cubs up
2-1. Derrek Lee opened the third with his second double, but after
getting the next two batters, Phils starter Jamie Moyer gave up a
two-out RBI single to Cedeno and run-scoring bloop double to Jones
that made it 4-1. The 44-year-old lefty threw 38 pitches in the
The Phils rallied against Hill in the fifth as Iguchi blooped a
double in front of Jones, Rollins had an RBI single and Ryan Howard
delivered with a run-scoring double. When Jones' throw got past the
cutoff man, Howard tried to race to third but was cut down on Lee's
strong throw. And it cost the Phils a run when Rowand followed with
his 16th homer to tie the game at 4.
Moyer, who began his career with the Cubs after they chose him
in the sixth round of the 1984 draft, lasted five innings and gave
up nine hits and four runs.
Hill's error and wild pitch helped the Phillies score a run in
the first, but he escaped a big inning after the first three
batters reached. Hill threw wildly past first after fielding
leadoff hitter Chris Roberson's slow grounder for a two-base error,
Iguchi singled and Hill hit Rollins to load the bases.
After striking out Howard and Rowand, Hill was nearly out of the
inning before uncorking a wild pitch to allow Roberson to score.
Burrell walked to reload the bases before Ruiz popped out.
Murton hit a two-out RBI single in the first just past a fully
extended Rollins at short to score Lee, who'd doubled.
Moyer made it to the majors with the Cubs in 1986. ... Cubs
RBI leader Aramis Ramirez was out of starting lineup to rest a sore
knee but pinch-hit in the eighth when the Cubs also loaded the
bases. ... Werth was activated from the 15-day disabled list before
the game. He had been out since June 28 with a strained left wrist.