Jackson delivers in clutch as Cubs walk off
Wells tosses four shutout innings; Cashner wins with stellar relief
MESA, Ariz. -- Brett Jackson hit a walk-off RBI single with two outs in the ninth, driving in Jim Adduci from second, to lift the Cubs to a 2-1 victory Thursday over the Indians.
Jayson Nix hit a solo homer with one out in the Indians' sixth, connecting on a 2-1 pitch from Andrew Cashner, who is being stretched out this spring to see if he's ready for a spot in the rotation.
The Cubs tied the game in the eighth when Marquez Smith doubled with one out, moved up on a wild pitch by Frank Herrmann and scored on catcher Chun-Hsiu Chen's error as his throw to third was off target.
Indians starter Justin Masterson, making his second spring start, struck out five of the nine batters he faced, including the first four. He faced the minimum over three innings.
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"We're making adjustments and building off of that," said Masterson, who will likely be the No. 2 starter in the Indians' rotation. "We made some adjustments today. It wasn't always perfect, but we got balls decently where we wanted to, we were ahead in counts, the pitches were moving mostly like they're supposed to and we got some bad swings at times."
Cubs starter Randy Wells, competing for one of two openings in the rotation, gave up one hit and walked one in four scoreless innings.
Wells said he had a good feel for his sinker and changeups and was able to keep the ball down, which is always a good sign.
"I'm pleased," Wells said. "You set goals for yourself, you want to come in and want to impress, obviously, but you also want to get your work in and work on stuff you need to work on, and I've been doing that on the side and it's been carrying into games."
Cashner, who entered in relief in the sixth, had the Cubs' only hit through seven, a two-out single in the sixth. He picked up the win, pitching four innings. Cleveland's pitching was tough, and third baseman Lonnie Chisenhall chipped in, making a great running catch in foul territory of Jackson's popup in the Chicago eighth.
Cubs up next: The Cubs and White Sox will square off Friday for the first time in 2011, and it could be interesting. Opening Day starter Ryan Dempster will start for the Cubs against lefty Mark Buehrle in Glendale. Mike Quade is using a DH in hopes of giving himself whatever edge he can. Marlon Byrd, Geovany Soto, Tyler Colvin, Alfonso Soriano and Carlos Pena also are scheduled to start. The game will be broadcast on MLB.TV at 2:05 p.m. CT.
Indians up next: Cleveland right-hander Mitch Talbot will aim to shake off his early struggles when he takes the hill for his third start of the spring on Friday. Talbot, who has allowed 11 runs in his first 3 2/3 innings this spring, will face the Mariners in a 3:05 p.m. ET tilt at Goodyear Ballpark. Reliever Chad Durbin is also expected to make his Cactus League debut for the Tribe. The game will be carried live on the Indians Radio Network Audio and delayed until 7 p.m. ET on WTAM 1100AM. Fans can listen live on Gameday Audio.
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.