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Soriano, Fukudome lead Cubs

Soriano, Fukudome lead Cubs
The Great Alfonso Soriano Experiment ended after two games. Maybe it was just as well for the Cubs .

After going 1-for-8 with 3 strikeouts while batting third in the first two games of the series in St. Louis, Soriano moved back into the comfort zone of the leadoff spot Sunday.

Coincidence or not, the Cubs beat the Cardinals 10-3 to snap a four-game losing streak and move back over .500 at 9-8.

Soriano certainly played a part in the victory. He reached base three times ? one time painfully ? and scored twice while stealing a base.

But the biggest hero was birthday boy Kosuke Fukudome, who went 3-for-4 with a homer and a career-best 5 RBI. As far as celebrating, Fukudome played it low-key.

quot;More than hitting, winning is the most important thing,quot; he told reporters in St. Louis through his translator. quot;I?m too old for a cake, and I don?t want to get fat.quot;

Soriano helped set the table for Fukudome in the first inning, when he singled on the first pitch of the game off ex-Cub Todd Wellemeyer. Ryan Theriot bunted for a basehit before Fukudome singled home Soriano.

Derrek Lee followed with a run-scoring double to left. Lee finished out the top half of the inning before exiting with neck spasms. According to manager Lou Piniella, the injury shouldn?t put Lee on the disabled list.

Soriano was hit on the batting helmet by a pitch from Wellemeyer in the second, but he elected to stay in the game.

quot;They asked me if I wanted to come out, but I said I?m fine because we don?t have too many players,quot; Soriano told the media, referring to the rash of injuries that?s hit the Cubs of late. As long as Soriano says he?s ready, expect him to stay in the top spot. Last season, he opened as the Cubs ? No. 2 hitter, but that experiment lasted just two games. Piniella hit him third in the first two games of the St. Louis series to try to give the Cubs some pop in the middle. Apparently, that?s over with, too.

quot;We?ll just put him in the leadoff spot,quot; Piniella said to reporters before the game. quot;That?s where he feels comfortable, and that?s where we?ll leave him.quot;

Author:Fox Sports
Author's Website:
Added: April 28, 2009

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