Barrett Double Downs A's

CHICAGO - For better or worse, the Oakland Athletics bullpen has provided some thrilling moments in the past week. Michael Barrett, who the A's traded to the Chicago Cubs just one day after acquiring him from Montreal in the off-season, drove in three runs, including a game-winning two-run double in the ninth inning off Chad Bradford to give the Cubs a thrilling 4-3 win Saturday.

Mark Mulder outdueled Mark Prior, going eight solid innings and allowing just two runs despite 10 hits. Mulder pitched his way out of several jams, stranding nine Cub runners on base.

Prior lasted just five innings, allowing three runs on six hits with five strikeouts. Nevertheless, the Cub right-hander's only mistakes came in the fourth inning. Jermaine Dye doubled and scored to start the inning, and Esteban German hit a bases-clearing RBI triple to give Oakland their first lead of the day at 3-1.

Earlier, the Cubs took advantage of a throwing error by shortstop Bobby Crosby to score their first run of the day--an RBI single to right from the scorching hot Derrek Lee, who finished 4-for-4.

Second baseman Mark Grudzielanek, fresh off the DL for the first time in over two months, doubled to lead off the seventh against Mulder and later came in to score when Barrett drove the first pitch he saw to the opposite field in right center. Earlier, Grudzielanek grounded out with the bases loaded in the second.

Todd Hollandsworth, pinch-hitting for winning pitcher Kyle Farnsworth, started the ninth inning rally with a one-out infield single before Todd Walker hit for Grudzielanek and singled to right. That set the stage for Barrett, who sent a 1-1 pitch from Bradford (3-4) to deep right to score both Hollandsworth and Walker for the game-winner.

Farnsworth (2-3) worked a scoreless ninth inning in relief, allowing a leadoff single to Crosby and a one-out walk to second baseman Marco Scutaro before striking out German and pinch-hitter Erubiel Durazo to get the Cubs out of the jam.

NOTES: Barrett has now hit safely in 13 of his last 14 games, batting .298 in that span. Lee meanwhile has hit safely in 16 of his last 18 games, batting a whopping .414 for the month of June. Hollandsworth recorded his ninth pinch-hit and is hitting .600 (9/15) off the bench this season. The Cubs have won seven of their last eight. They are 15-17 in games decided by two runs or less this season. Despite going 0/3 at the plate, Patterson has hit safely in 10 of his last 13 games, batting .354 in that span.

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