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Cubs enjoy Little League thriller

CHICAGO -- Rain delays in baseball are not usually welcomed, unless they manage to be timed perfectly to provide a little inspiration.

As it turned out, the 3-hour, 9-minute rain delay that hit during the Chicago Cubs-Baltimore Orioles game managed to give players from both teams the opportunity to watch Little League Baseball's United States final.

For the Cubs, there was a little more on the line since a team from Chicago was playing the Nevada champion out of Las Vegas for the U.S. title, with Chicago winning a thrilling 7-5 decision. The contest among mostly 12-year olds ended right before play in the Cubs-Orioles game resumed.

"Yes, we saw it. It was a really exciting ballgame," Cubs manager Rick Renteria said. "The finish, I saw that they won on a 1-6-3 double play. I think the Little League World Series has been pretty exciting for everyone, a lot of interest.

"Obviously these kids are probably getting a lot of attention, and rightfully so. They're going out there and having a good time. Hopefully they remain humble through the whole thing because it can be overwhelming."

Chicago's Jackie Robinson West Little League has one more game remaining Sunday for the overall championship against South Korea.

"Yeah, that was actually a really fun game to watch," Cubs pitcher Justin Grimm said. "It was going back and forth a lot, so it was a fun game. We were in here having fun with it."

Grimm's enjoyment of the game was interrupted slightly when pitching coach Chris Bosio came to him to say that he would be on the mound when play resumed after the delay. "My heart just started beating really fast," Grimm said. "I was like: 'All right, here we go.' "

Right before the rain delay started, affording the Cubs' players the chance to watch the Little League game on television, Chris Coghlan had just delivered a bases-clearing triple that helped the Cubs take a 4-1 lead into the interruption.

"It was pretty cool to watch," Coghlan said. "I hadn't sat down and watched any Little League game from start to finish. I thought it was a really good game, fun, entertaining, intense for Little League. Obviously we were pulling for Chicago so it was pretty cool to see them win."