Middlebrooks, Cashner power Padres past host Cubs

Third baseman hits first spring HR; righty tosses three scoreless innings

Middlebrooks, Cashner power Padres past host Cubs

MESA, Ariz. -- Will Middlebrooks belted a three-run homer and Yonder Alonso added a solo shot to back Andrew Cashner and lead the Padres to a 6-3 victory Monday over the Cubs, who are still seeking their first Cactus League win.

In his second spring start, Cashner, who was the Cubs' first-round pick in the 2008 Draft before being dealt to San Diego for Anthony Rizzo in January 2012, struck out three and walked one over three hitless innings.

San Diego batted around in the second against Chicago's Edwin Jackson. Derek Norris reached on a fielding error by shortstop Starlin Castro to start the inning, then moved up on Jackson's throwing error as the Cubs righty fielded Alonso's comebacker and instead of turning a double play, bounced his throw to Castro covering at second. One out later, Middlebrooks launched a 2-2 pitch to left for his first spring home run and a 3-0 lead. Alexi Amarista added a two-out RBI single.

Jackson, battling for Chicago's fifth-starter spot, threw eight pitches in the first, but needed 27 to get through the second. Kyle Hendricks, projected as the fourth starter, struck out one over two innings.

Alonso opened a 5-0 lead with a one-out home run in the fifth off Jason Motte, who also served up a Jedd Gyorko double and an RBI single by Abraham Almonte before exiting.

Mike Olt belted his second spring home run when he connected against Jason Lane leading off the Chicago fifth. Jonathan Herrera added an RBI single in the inning, then Miguel Montero hit his first spring home run to make it a 6-3 game in the sixth.

Up next: The Padres return to Peoria to face the Giants at 1:05 p.m. PT on Tuesday. Ian Kennedy makes his second appearance of the spring, his first coming in relief of Cashner against the Mariners. Kennedy likely will go at least three innings in his start Tuesday. The game can be heard via an exclusive free padres.com webcast.

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.