Cubs 8, Dodgers 1

Los Angeles Dodgers manager Don Mattingly didn’t like the manner

in which his team carried itself in an 8-1 loss to the Chicago Cubs

on Thursday.

”No energy,” Mattingly said.

Mattingly was excited to hear injured outfielder Carl Crawford

played in a minor league exhibition game, though. Crawford was shut

down on March 1.

”I was told he looked good,” Mattingly said. ”Step one, step

two. That’s good.”

Five Chicago pitchers limited the Dodgers to four hits. Starting

left-hander Chris Rusin, who made seven starts for the Cubs last

year after he was called up in August from Triple-A Iowa, threw

five scoreless innings and allowed only one hit on a hot afternoon

in the desert.

The Dodgers also committed two errors.

”It was one of those days when we felt like we’ve been here a

long time,” Mattingly said. ”I’ve got a feeling it’s not just us.

But I still don’t like it.

”You get bad habits playing this way,” he added.

Rusin, a left-hander competing for a spot in the Cubs bullpen,

made it hard for the Dodgers to gain any momentum. After walking

leadoff batter Mark Ellis, he frustrated an order that featured

Andre Ethier, Matt Kemp and Adrian Gonzalez.

”I didn’t know I’d do that well against them today,” said

Rusin, who gave up a single to shortstop Alfredo Amezaga in the

third. ”I had movement and had early action and kept my defenders

on their toes and not on their heels.”

Dodger left-hander Chris Capuano had a rocky start in his third

appearance this spring. In 4 1-3 innings, he gave up five runs on

six hits, including a two-run triple by Welington Castillo in the


”I felt pretty good out there, especially at the end, said

Capuano, who was 12-12 last season and is trying to keep his spot

in the starting rotation. ”I had a little trouble with command of

the fastball.”

Mattingly thought Capuano left too many pitches in the middle of

the plate.

”Capuano changes speeds a lot,” Mattingly said. ”He needs to

hit the corners. He’s not and that’s not good.”

For the Dodgers, the good news Thursday came before the game

during a minor league exhibition against Meija University, a

Japanese college.

Crawford hit against game pitching. It was another step in his

rehab from a nerve irritation in a surgically-repaired left elbow.

On Tuesday, he faced relievers Kenley Jansen and J.P Howell.

In the minor league exhibition, he got six at-bats from pitchers

on both teams. He ran the bases. He also took part in throwing

drills for the first time since suffering the irritation.

NOTES: Jansen was added to the Netherlands roster for the World

Baseball Classic. The Netherlands will play the second semifinal

Monday. Jansen, a native of Curacao in the Netherlands Antilles,

needed a medical waiver to play because he had surgery in October

for an irregular heartbeat. An injury last season or surgery in the

offseason can keep a player off a WBC roster. He replaces pitcher

Jonatan Isenia, who has a strained right elbow. ”Actually, we

think this will be good for him,” Mattingly said. ”He’ll get into

competition and it will be a good scenario, as far as the

competition and energy level.” . Zack Greinke, who is back at

Camelback Ranch after a trip to Los Angeles Monday for

anti-inflammatory injection in his right elbow, is scheduled Friday

to play catch. His next bullpen session should be next week. It’s

not known whether Greinke, the No. 2 starter in the Dodgers’

projected rotation, will be ready for his first start April 2

against San Francisco at Dodger Stadium. He signed a six-year, $147

million contract in December.