CUBS BLOW 5-RUN LEAD IN LOSS TO SANDBERG, PHILLIES: The Cubs felt pretty good in the sixth inning. They had a five-run lead, and Jeff Samardzija was cruising.
Everything fell apart from there.
Samardzija lost control of the game in a hurry, helping the Philadelphia Phillies rally for a 6-5 victory Friday in Ryne Sandberg's return to Wrigley Field.
Michael Young had four hits for Philadelphia, including a tiebreaking RBI single in the ninth inning. The Phillies improved to 9-6 since Sandberg was promoted to interim manager when Charlie Manuel was fired on Aug. 16. The Hall of Fame second baseman spent most of his playing career with the Cubs and was cheered all day long in his first trip to Chicago since he was elevated to the top spot in Philadelphia.
DEMPSTER WORKS INTO 7TH AS BOSTON TOPS WHITE SOX: Ryan Dempster returned from his suspension for hitting Alex Rodriguez and pitched into the seventh inning, leading the Boston Red Sox over the White Sox 4-3 Friday night for their fifth win in six games .
David Ortiz snapped an 0-for-23 slump with a two-run single for the AL East leaders.
Dempster (7-9), penalized five games for plunking A-Rod on Aug. 18, held Chicago hitless through the first four innings. He allowed three runs and five hits in 6 1/3 innings.
RAILCATS TOP T-BONES BEHIND QUIJANO COMPLETE GAME: Alain Quijano pitched a complete game and the RailCats beat Kansas City 5-2 as their magic number for the postseason reduced to one.
Quijano struck out seven and walked two, allowing six hits over nine innings.
The RailCats took a 2-0 lead in the first, which shrunk to a 2-2 tie by the fifth inning. Brian Kolb drove in Reid Fronk in the sixth to take the lead and the 'Cats added two runs on an error in the ninth.
The RailCats need to win one of their next three games -- all at home against El Paso -- or Winnipeg can lose any of its next three games to put Gary into the postseason.
BEARS PART WITH WEBB: The Bears waived offensive lineman J'Marcus Webb on Friday, ending a three-year run in which his performance never measured up to his talent.
Webb was one of 14 players waived as was running back Armando Allen. The Bears also terminated the contracts of quarterbacks Jordan Palmer and Trent Edwards along with guard Edwin Williams, putting their roster at 58 active players. They must get it down to 53 by 5 p.m. Saturday.
The Bears added left tackle Jermon Bushrod in the offseason and essentially handed the starting right tackle job to Webb, only to have him lose it in the preseason. Now, they're going with fifth-round pick Jordan Mills at that spot, with first-rounder Kyle Long at right guard along with Bushrod and guard Matt Slauson on the left side.
DJOKOVIC, MURRAY ADVANCE AT U.S. OPEN: Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray have met in three of the last four Grand Slam finals, though if they play in the U.S. Open this year, it will be in the semis.
Each took a step forward Friday, shaky at moments and sensational in others, in second-round victories. The top-seeded Djokovic faced two early set points, while defending champion Murray had to go four sets.
Leonardo Mayer, ranked 81st, ran Murray all over the court, but the third-seeded Brit excels at chasing down shots. Murray won the last five games for a 7-5, 6-1, 3-6, 6-1 victory.
After pulling out the first set in a tiebreaker, Djokovic needed less than an hour to close out his victory. The 2011 champion beat 87th-ranked Benjamin Becker of Germany 7-6 (2), 6-2, 6-2.
Australian Open semifinalist Sloane Stephens, seeded 15th, beat fellow American Jamie Hampton 6-1, 6-3. Hampton, at No. 23, was seeded at a Grand Slam tournament for the first time in her career.
Around the horn
Tamika Catchings had 22 points and 10 rebounds; Shavonte Zellous scored 21 points, and the Fever recovered after giving up a 17-point lead to beat the New York Liberty 73-67 on Friday night. Indiana (13-15) pulled one-half game behind Washington for third place in the Eastern Conference. ... Phil Mickelson keeps saying how much he loves playing with Tiger Woods. He shot an 8-under 63 at the Deutsche Bank Championship to prove it. In a feature grouping of the top three players in the world ranking, Mickelson turned in the star performance Friday morning with a front-nine 28 that allowed him to consider — but only briefly — another shot at 59.