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posted: 9/30/2012 7:54 PM

Cubs end 7-game losing streak

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  • Cubs center fielder Tony Campana and teammates celebrate Sunday after defeating the Arizona Diamondbacks 7-2.

      Cubs center fielder Tony Campana and teammates celebrate Sunday after defeating the Arizona Diamondbacks 7-2.
    Associated Press

 
Associated Press

PHOENIX -- For one afternoon, Cubs manager Dale Sveum could laugh about his team's travails on the basepaths.

"We're like a vitamin -- one a day," Sveum said after actually watching two runners get thrown out Sunday in a 7-2 win over the Arizona Diamondbacks.

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"You don't teach it. You don't see it. Strange stuff. It's unbelievable."

Such stuff is one of the reasons the Cubs are in the midst of their own final-week push, this one to avoid becoming the first Cubs team since 1966 to lose 100 games.

With 99 losses already after ending a seven-game losing streak, the Cubs will have to sweep their last three games against the only major league team with a worse record -- the 106-loss Houston Astros.

"I'm expecting a little bit of a playoff atmosphere to try and avoid that number," Sveum said. "It'll be fun, at least as much fun as we can have in this season to try and stay away from it."

Anthony Rizzo had three hits and David DeJesus homered. The win was Chicago's second in its past 13 games overall.

"It wasn't the prettiest thing ever," Sveum said.

Chris Rusin (2-3) allowed one earned run and three hits in five innings.

"I was a little wild in the first inning but was able to find it between innings," Rusin said. "It feels good to get the win and we've got to try to get three more wins against Houston."

Brian LaHair's two-run single capped a four-run sixth inning against Bryan Shaw (1-6) and two other Arizona relievers.

Chicago trailed 2-1 when Rizzo and Alfonso Soriano singled with one out in the sixth. Starlin Castro was safe when first baseman Mike Jacobs couldn't pick up his grounder down the line, and the error loaded the bases.

After Mike Zagurski struck out Luis Valbuena, Matt Albers relieved. Pinch hitter Dave Sappelt hit a grounder that Jacobs scooped, but the throw to Albers covering first base was a half-second late. Sappelt's infield hit made it 2-all.

Albers then hit Anthony Recker with a pitch to force home the go-ahead run and LaHair's single made it 5-2.

LaHair was caught standing between first and second after his hit and tagged out by Jacobs to end the inning rally.

In the third inning, Rizzo was picked off between first and second when he pulled up thinking Soriano had struck out for the final out of the inning.

The Cubs added an unearned run in the seventh on a three-base throwing error by Brad Bergesen, the Diamondbacks' fifth of seven pitchers, and another error two batters later by third baseman Cody Ransom.

"We gave up seven runs and three of them were earned," Arizona manager Kirk Gibson said. "That's pretty tough. We can be frustrated but the reality of it is they had three earned runs out of seven. It wasn't a very clean game from the seventh inning on."

DeJesus homered to right off Takashi Saito in the ninth for Chicago's final run.

Rizzo doubled home DeJesus in the first against Josh Collmenter for a 1-0 lead.

The Diamondbacks scored twice in the bottom half. Ransom drove in a run with an infield single and another scored on Recker's error for dropping Rusin's throw home for a would-be force out.

Collmenter went five innings, allowing a run on six hits with two strikeouts.

"I thought we would be able to get to their guy, but they did a good job from the first inning on," Collmenter said.

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