Hero: Carlos Zambrano (10-6) earned his seventh road win of the season after allowing just three hits in seven innings while striking out five and walking four. Zambrano, who is 7-2 in 12 career starts against San Diego, is 7-0 with a 1.27 ERA in 10 starts since rejoining the starting rotation on Aug. 9. Big Z, who will make his final start of the season this weekend at Houston, has pitched 13 consecutive scoreless innings.
Goats: Kosuke Fukudome, Starlin Castro, and Xavier Nady each went 0-for-4.
Key Play: Blake DeWitt's one-out single to center in the top of the seventh off Padres starter Tim Stauffer (5-5) scored Alfonso Soriano from second with the game's only run.
Comments: San Diego (87-69) fell one game behind first-place San Francisco in the NL West and fell a half-game behind Atlanta in the NL wild-card race. It was just the Padres' second loss in their last 11 games against the Cubs and their first in five contests this season.
Everth Cabrera stole second with two outs in the ninth inning. It was San Diego's 121st steal of the season. The Padres' record fell to 54-15 in games in which they have stolen a base in 2010.
The Cubs (71-85) won their seventh straight on the road and their ninth in their last 10 games away from Wrigley Field. They are 15-3 in road games since Aug. 14.
Carlos Marmol struck out two while loading the bases with an infield single, a phantom hit batsman, and a walk in the ninth inning for his 35th save of the season. Marmol has struck out 133 in 74 2/3 innings for a ratio of 16.03 strikeouts per nine innings.
Relievers have posted a 1.46 ERA in the Cubs' last 19 games, dating back to Sept. 6.
Marlon Byrd, who returned to the lineup after missing two games because of swelling beneath his right eye, went 3-for-4. It was Byrd's 17th game of the season with three or more hits and his first such game since Aug. 22, which was Lou Piniella's final game as manager.
Next: The Cubs will attempt to deal another blow to San Diego's playoff hopes Tuesday (WGN, 9:05 p.m.) when they send Ryan Dempster (14-11, 3.87 ERA), hoping to rebound from a hideous outing last week against San Francisco, against Padres right-hander Mat Latos (14-8, 2.91).
Latos has allowed 16 earned runs while losing his last three starts.