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Saturday, August 3, 2013
Rapid Reaction: Dodgers 3, Cubs 0

By Bruce Levine



CHICAGO -- Here's a quick look at the Chicago Cubs' 3-0 loss to the Los Angeles Dodgers on Saturday at Wrigley Field.

How it happened: Cubs starter Jeff Samardzija was looking to build his résumé off his previous start (seven innings, zero runs allowed). The Dodgers were riding the wave of a team-record 12 straight road victories. L.A. third baseman Jerry Hairston Jr. drove in the first run of the game with a seeing-eye base hit to right in the third inning. Samardzija worked his way out of a bases-loaded jam by striking out hot-hitting Yasiel Puig in the fourth inning. Puig had six hits in his previous seven at-bats on Friday and Saturday. Carl Crawford’s two-out, two-run single in the sixth gave Dodgers starter Chris Capuano some breathing room in a close contest. Puig left the game with a bruised wrist in the eighth inning.

What it means: The Dodgers have not lost a road game since July 6. Samardzija lost his 10th game. Nine strikeouts and five walks are indicative of a somewhat erratic performance for the Cubs starter. Chicago has hit a wall, losing six of its first seven games on this homestand. The Cubs had won six out of 10 on their road trip following the All-Star break. General manager Jed Hoyer said before Saturday's game that the team has been negotiating with Samardzija’s agent, Mark Rogers, on a long-term deal. The Northwest Indiana native has two years of salary arbitration left before free-agent eligibility.

Outside the box: Cubs RHP Scott Baker continued his rehab from Tommy John elbow surgery at Class A Daytona on Saturday night. Baker has not pitched in a major league game since April 2012. … Chicago designated outfielder Julio Borbon for assignment Saturday. … The team added veteran infielder Donnie Murphy to the 25-man roster.

Up next: RHP Carlos Villanueva (2-7, 4.33 ERA) opposes RHP Zack Greinke (8-3, 3.43) in the final contest of this four-game series. The Dodgers are seeking a sweep.