- Associated Press - Friday, March 14, 2014

MESA, Ariz. (AP) - Josh Beckett pitched three scoreless innings Friday before having to leave the game with soreness in his right thumb, but the Chicago Cubs beat the Los Angeles Dodgers 5-4.

Beckett, expected to be in the Dodgers‘ rotation, allowed only an infield single to Emilio Bonifacio while walking two and striking out one. He planned to go four innings, but left after three when the thumb, which he accidentally jammed in a door last week, began bothering him.

“It’s frustrating, but it could have happened at a worse time.” said Beckett, who may visit a doctor and take a couple days off. “I just don’t want to fall too far behind.”

Beckett said the accident happened about 10 days ago at the Dodgers‘ spring-training complex.

“Somebody was opening the door,” he said. “You know how you have a sign that says ‘in’ and ‘out’?

“Somebody came ‘out’ of the ‘in.’”

Because of the thumb problem, Beckett wasn’t able to use his curveball.

But Dodgers manager Don Mattingly noted, “His changeup was good. Overall, it was a pretty good outing for him.”

Luis Valbuena hit a two-run homer for the Cubs. Drew Butera hit a solo homer for the Dodgers.

The game drew an overflow crowd of 15,191, another Cactus League attendance record at Cubs‘ Park.


Cubs: prospect Kyle Hendricks blanked the Dodgers for three innings. Hendricks allowed just an infield single by Dee Gordon, while walking one and striking out four.

Hendricks, expected to start the season in Triple-A, has a 3.38 ERA this spring.


Jeff Samardzija will start opening day for the Chicago Cubs on March 31 at Pittsburgh, manager Rick Renteria announced Friday.

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