CHICAGO (Ticker) --
are entering the All-Star Break in fine form.
Furcal, who will be playing in his first All-Star Game, capped a five-run sixth inning with a two-run single as the Braves cruised past the
, 7-2, for their ninth victory in 10 games.
added a two-run double in the sixth for Atlanta, which avoided consecutive defeats for the first time since June 25-26.
The Braves enter the break with the best record in baseball (61-32).
"Good trip, good first half, great way to end it, good-pitched game and a lot of good hitting," Braves manager
(7-4) yielded one unearned run and seven hits in six innings to improve to 15-6 in 29 lifetime games against the Cubs.
"The last couple of starts my split has been there," Reynolds said of his split-fingered fastball. "I think we found a little mechanical thing and got it worked out."
"That's three in a row he has gone really well," Cox said. "He's doing a great job of keeping them off-balance."
Atlanta led, 2-1, before
began the sixth with consecutive walks against Cubs starter
Fick plated both with a double to deep right-center field, advanced to third on a hit by
and scored on a single by
that chased Zambrano.
came on, Reynolds sacrificed Castilla to second before Furcal staked his starter to a 7-1 advantage with single to left that knocked in both runners.
"The Braves are a great team but that's not an excuse," Zambrano said. "I just didn't make make pitches in the inning."
Castilla went 3-for-4 and finished the series 11-for-15.
"I'm seeing the ball well and I'm in a groove," Castilla said. "I'm hoping to keep swinging the bat like this in the second half."
The four-game series drew 157,902 fans to Wrigley Field, breaking the record of 156,590 against Colorado from July 2-5, 1993.
Zambrano surrendered seven runs and eight hits in five-plus innings. He had been 2-0 with a 1.50 ERA in two prior games against the Braves.
Chicago lost for the 13th time in 19 games to slip to .500 (47-47).
"The break comes at a good time for us," Cubs manager
said. "We've just played 20 in a row. Hopefully our guys come out refreshed in the second half."
"We know we are better than a .500 team, we just ran into a buzzsaw in this Braves team," Cubs shortstop
said. "Everyone in this room thinks we can win, we just have to prove it."
, who had homered five times in his previous six games, went 2-for-5 with an RBI single in the third inning.
"Of course we need some help, but we can't worry about that," Sosa said. "We have enough players here to win, we just need to be more consistent in the second half."
Atlanta took the lead for good in the fourth, when
hit a game-tying sacrifice fly and Castilla hit an RBI single three batters later.