MESA, Ariz. -- Caleb Gindl hit an RBI triple and scored on Zelous Wheeler's double Monday to spoil Kerry Wood's first appearance back with the Cubs as the Brewers beat their National League Central rivals, 5-3.
Wood, back with the Cubs after two seasons in the American League with stops in Cleveland and New York, entered in the sixth with the Brewers leading, 2-1. He received a standing ovation from the fans at HoHoKam Park. Luis Cruz singled to lead off for Milwaukee and Wood retired the next two hitters before Gindl tripled to right-center. Wheeler then doubled to left.
Cubs starter Randy Wells, trying to secure a spot in the rotation, gave up two hits over two scoreless innings, striking out one.
Wells said he isn't worried about the competition for the rotation.
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"That's one thing I can't really worry about or get caught up in," Wells said. "Today, I was happy with the stuff I've worked on in the offseason. Last year, I fell into a pattern that when I get a guy on or start out 2-0 on somebody, you go up there and fire the ball and hope for the best. Carlos [Pena] made the error there [in the first] and came up to me and said, 'Hey, get another ground ball and we're good,' and that's what I did, and threw a great sinker and got a ground ball and we turned a double play."
Reed Johnson led off the Chicago first with a single off Tim Dillard. Milwaukee's Ryan Braun made a great running catch of Darwin Barney's fly to left but Tyler Colvin followed with an RBI triple to right. Colvin tried to score on Alfonso Soriano's fly ball but Braun threw him out at home.
Braun took an early bus back to Maryvale Baseball Park and recounted his first inning for reporters.
"It was pretty spectacular," he deadpanned. "I feel like I got everything out of the way on the first day. I scored from second on a base hit and had to slide hard into home. I had a productive first inning in the field. It was good."
The Brewers took advantage of mistakes by Andrew Cashner in the third. Carlos Gomez reached on a fielder's choice, moved up on a throwing error by Cashner, stole third, and scored on a wild pitch. Braun doubled and scored on Mark Kotsay's single to go ahead, 2-1.
Cashner, who had two at-bats last season as a reliever for the Cubs, doubled in his first spring at-bat in the third.
Brewers up next: Highly touted offseason addition Zack Greinke will make his unofficial Brewers debut Tuesday in Glendale, Ariz., against Mark Buehrle and the White Sox. It's a matchup of potential Opening Day starters, though Brewers manager Ron Roenicke continues to be coy about his pitching plans. Greinke's case to start March 31 in Cincinnati over incumbent ace Yovani Gallardo is bolstered by that 2009 American League Cy Young Award on his mantle.
Cubs up next: Ryan Dempster, tabbed the Cubs' Opening Day starter, will make his first spring start Tuesday when the Cubs face the defending world champion Giants in Scottsdale, Ariz. Kosuke Fukudome will be back in right field and leading off as manager Mike Quade tries to find the right lineup combination.
Carrie Muskat is a reporter for MLB.com. She writes a blog, Muskat Ramblings, and you can follow her on Twitter@CarrieMuskat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.