CHICAGO — Jon Lester returned to form, allowing one run in seven innings, and the Chicago Cubs’ offense came alive in an 8-1 victory over the Los Angeles Angels on Monday.

Coming off three straight losses at St. Louis in which they scored six total runs, the Cubs broke loose with a five-run sixth inning. Javier Baez began the onslaught with a run-scoring double, one of his three RBI, as Chicago picked up its second win in its past eight games.

Lester (4-4) was in control from the outset. The left-hander allowed four singles, walked one and struck out six, giving up his only run on a sacrifice fly by Jonathan Lucroy in the seventh.

Lucroy’s drive to the right-center field gap could have done more damage. But right fielder Carlos Gonzalez, who was promoted from Triple-A Iowa before the game, made a diving catch on the warning track, nearly sliding headfirst into the ivy-covered wall.

In his previous three starts – all losses – Lester allowed 19 runs (16 earned) in 14 innings, increasing his ERA from 1.16 to 3.59. After Monday’s effort, he’s now at 3.32.

Former Cub Trevor Cahill (2-6) was charged with five runs on six hits and two walks in 4 1/3 innings in relief of opener Cam Bedrosian. Cahill has one win in his last nine appearances.

The Cubs did their damage in the sixth against Cahill and two other relievers. After Baez doubled to drive in Kris Bryant, Jason Heyward had a two-run double, Addison Russell had a sacrifice fly and Kyle Schwarber singled to drive in a run. It was Chicago’s biggest inning since May 17, when it scored five times in the eighth during a 14-6 win over Washington.

Baez and Willson Contreras homered off Luís Garcia in the seventh.

Chicago took a 1-0 lead in the fourth on Baez’s groundout.

The game was a makeup of a contest scheduled for April 14 that was postponed because of inclement weather. The teams split the first two games of the series.

NOTES

PHILLIES: Philadelphia outfielder Odubel Herrera’s administrative leave has been extended through June 17 by Major League Baseball.

Herrera was placed on leave May 28, a day after his arrest in a domestic violence case at a casino in Atlantic City, New Jersey.

Administrative leave is not considered discipline. Herrera remains on the restricted list and continues to receive his $5 million salary but is ineligible to play. He is in the third year of a $30.5 million, five-year contract and is due to make $7 million next season and $10 million in 2021. The team has club options for 2022 and ’23.

Commissioner Rob Manfred has the option of suspending Herrera either without pay, or with pay pending the resolution of legal proceedings – a penalty that later could be converted to without pay. Herrera could challenge any discipline before arbitrator Mark Irvings.

An All-Star center fielder in 2016, the 27-year-old Herrera is hitting .222 with one home run and 16 RBI in 39 games this season. He missed time in April with a hamstring injury.

TELEVISION: Mets announcer Ron Darling is returning to the team’s broadcast booth Tuesday night following surgery to treat thyroid cancer.

Darling said April 13 he was taking a medical leave. On May 6, he said a mass had been removed and he planned to be back at work in about a month.

The 58-year-old former pitcher said in a statement his doctors tell him his cancer has been “stabilized for now” and he has been cleared to work. He adds that he will be monitored closely for the next several months to “assure my progress remains on the right track.”

Darling was 136-116 from 1983-95 and helped the Mets win the 1986 World Series.


Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.