Those wondering why Gary Matthews is nicknamed 'Sarge' received...

By MIKE BARNES, UPI Sports Writer

LOS ANGELES -- Those wondering why Gary Matthews is nicknamed 'Sarge' received a thorough explanation Friday night.

The 36-year-old outfielder, one of the most fiery players in baseball, clubbed two homers and drove in four runs to ignite the Chicago Cubs to a 6-3 victory over the Los Angeles Dodgers.


'Adrenalin goes a long way,' said Matthews, who pumped his fist in the air as he circled the bases after each homer. 'There's no limit to what you can do.

'I consider myself a motivator. If your teammates know you are giving your all then they're going to do the same thing. But you can only lead by example; you've got to get on base and drive in runs.'

Matthews, who was 3-for-4, singled in a run in the fourth, drilled a two-run homer in the sixth and added a solo shot in the eighth. He has 10 homers this season -- three in two days and five in his last 27 at-bats.

Manny Trillo certainly followed Matthews' example. In his first game back from the disabled list, Trillo collected three hits and two RBI as Chicago won for the third time in four games.


The veteran infieler, on the DL with bone chips in his right thumb, played first base and was 3-for-5 with two run-scoring singles and a double. He was activated before the game.

'That was great,' Cubs manager Gene Michael said. 'We wanted to get some at-bats for him right away. He got a couple of big hits for us - three, in fact.'

Scott Sanderson, 4-6, earned his first victory since May 30 by scattering five hits and fanning six over 5 1-3 innings. The right-hander was replaced by Dave Gumpert after hyper-ventilating.

Lee Smith pitched two innings for his 14th save. Rick Honeycutt, the major leagues' ERA leader at 2.09, absorbed the loss to fall to 5-5.

Matthews followed a leadoff double by Ron Cey in the sixth with a long drive off Jerry Reuss into the left-field pavilion, giving Chicago a 4-0 lead. The homer snapped a string of nine straight solo shots by the Cubs.

'If I knew Reuss was going to give up two runs, I would never have taken out Honeycutt (for a pinch-hitter in the fifth),' Los Angeles manager Tom Lasorda said.

Len Matuszek belted a two-run homer off Gumpert in the bottom of the sixth to cut the Los Angeles deficit to 4-2. His fourth homer of the season was only the Dodgers' second in 15 games.


Los Angeles then closed within a run in the seventh. Rookie Ralph Bryant tripled for his first major-league extra-base hit and scored on Alex Trevino's sacrifice fly.

But Matthews struck again in the eighth, pounding a 1-2 pitch from Tom Niedenfuer just beyond the wall in deepest center field. It was the 10th homer allowed by Niedenfuer in 52 2-3 innings this year.

Chicago added another run in the inning on Trillo's third hit of the game, a two-out RBI single that scored Jerry Mumphrey.

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