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GLENDALE, ARIZ. (CBSLA) — The Cubs hit 3 home runs and jumped out to a big lead, but the Dodgers took advantage of mistakes and managed a 7-6 Cactus League win on Monday at Camelback Ranch.
Chad Billingsley, one of eight total pitchers competing for the No. 3 rotation spot behind Clayton Kershaw and Zack Greinke, got off to a rough start, giving up four straight hits, including a home run, in the first inning. He rebounded in the second inning without giving up any runs.
It was Billingsley’s first start since August 24 of last year. He missed the last six weeks of the season after partially tearing an ulnar collateral ligament in his elbow. Billingsley elected to go through plasma therapy rather than undergo Tommy John surgery when the injury was identified.
Nick Punto hit a two-run single in the bottom of the first to answer Chicago’s big start in the top of the inning.
The Cubs retook the lead in the third after Darnell McDonald and Welington Castillo hit back-to-back homers off Chris Capuano, another Dodger competing for a spot in the starting rotation.
The Dodgers then scored three runs in the fifth inning without getting a hit off Chicago’s Robert Whitenack. Tony Gwynn scored on a balk, Jeremy Moore had an RBI ground out to score Dee Gordon, and another balk, this time by Michael Bowden, scored another run.
Omar Luna lined an RBI single to center off Jensen Lewis in the eighth, giving the Dodgers the go-ahead, and winning, run. The Dodgers scored seven runs off nine hits, while committing one error.
Dontrelle Willis, the 2003 NL Rookie of the Year, made just seven pitches before having to leave the game due to a shoulder injury. Willis had walked Nick Evans on six pitches in the eight inning and threw just one more pitch before trainers attended him on the mound.