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3/28/2013 6:20 P.M. ET
Soriano homers in Cubs' finale at HoHoKam Park
By John Schlegel / MLB.com
MESA, Ariz. -- Seattle's Michael Morse cracked his ninth homer of the spring and Chicago's Alfonso Soriano hit his fifth on Thursday as the Mariners rallied for a 6-4 win in the Cubs' final home game at HoKoKam Park. Morse, acquired from the Nationals in the offseason, hit his blast the opposite way to right-center field to lead off the second inning against Cubs starter Carlos Villanueva. Soriano delivered a two-run shot to deep left-center off Mariners starter Hisashi Iwakuma in the third. Kelly Shoppach had a go-ahead two-run double in a three-run eighth inning for the Mariners that held. The Cubs scored the go-ahead run in the sixth, with Brett Jackson coming around from second when first baseman Nate Tenbrink's errant throw to third allowed Jackson to jog home to make it 4-3. After Morse's homer put the Mariners on top early, Arismendy Alcantara started off a three-run third inning for the Cubs with a triple, scoring on a single by Zeke DeVoss, who scored on Soriano's homer. The Mariners rallied for a pair of unearned runs in the fifth inning, both runs scoring on a Kyle Seager double down the left-field line. Neither starter factored in the decision. Villanueva allowed three runs (one earned) on four hits in five innings, facing one batter in the sixth before his outing was complete. Iwakuma went four innings, allowing three earned runs on four hits while striking out four, leaving the game slightly earlier than expected as a precaution as he was dealing with a blister-like condition caused by dry skin on his pitching hand. "The last two times out I've been able to treat it like real game speed, and I've been really pleased with the results," Villanueva said. The Cubs will play their 2014 spring games in a new facility in Mesa. Up next for the Cubs: After breaking camp following their final home game at HoHoKam Park, the Cubs head to Houston for a pair of exhibitions on Friday and Saturday. Edwin Jackson will get his last tuneup of the spring, meeting Alex White of the Astros in the Friday opener at 7:05 p.m. CT on MLB.TV. Shortstop Starlin Castro, who traveled to New York for the birth of his child, is expected to rejoin the team in Houston on Friday.
John Schlegel is a national reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.