(Wednesday, July 18th)
Final Score: Chicago 5, Miami 1 (8 innings)
Chicago, IL (Sports Network) - Geovany Soto hit a go-ahead single during a four-run seventh inning, and the Chicago Cubs topped the Miami Marlins, 5-1, in a rain-shortened contest at Wrigley Field.
Pinch-hitter Jeff Baker stroked a two-run double during the decisive frame, as the Cubs won for the fifth time in six contests. Starlin Castro started the bottom of the fourth with a homer.
The game was halted by a rain storm with one out in the top of the eighth inning.
Jose Reyes led off the third inning with a homer for the Marlins, who saw their two-game win streak broken.
Jeff Samardzija allowed six hits and fanned nine over five innings in the start for the Cubs, while Josh Johnson (5-7) yielded five hits and four runs over 6 1/3 frames for Miami. James Russell (3-0) pitched the seventh inning for the win.
The Marlins wasted a chance with runners at the corners later in the third, and then Castro tied it with his blast to left field, Chicago's first hit of the night.
Miami let a golden opportunity slip away the following inning. Emilio Bonifacio led off with a triple. With one out Logan Morrison grounded a ball toward first base. Bonifacio was caught in a rundown between third and home, but Soto mishandled the ball, putting two runners in scoring position.
"Once again, we're not bringing those guys in," remarked Marlins manager Ozzie Guillen. "When Soto dropped the ball I said, 'Well here we go, the ball's bouncing our way.' Nothing happened."
Samardzija fanned Hanley Ramirez and Greg Dobbs grounded out to end the threat.
"Outs came a little tough for him today," said Cubs manager Dale Sveum of Samardzija, "but he battled and did a great job and only gave up the one run and got the outs when he had to every inning."
The Marlins stranded two more runners in the seventh, and the Cubs sent nine men to the plate in the bottom half. Alfonso Soriano singled and advanced to second on a wild pitch before Soto hit a bouncer over the head of a drawn-in Ramirez at third for a 2-1 lead. After Darwin Barney singled, Michael Dunn entered from the bullpen to replace Johnson.
Luis Valbneua singled to load the bases, and Baker sent a low liner that was barely inside the chalk down the left field line. David DeJesus followed with a sacrifice fly.
Marlins reliever Edward Mujica was activated from the 15-day disabled list Wednesday. He was out with a fractured right pinky toe...Actors Will Ferrell and Zach Galifianakis presented the Cubs' starting lineup...Mark Buehrle pitches for the Marlins, while Paul Maholm takes the mound for Chicago in the finale of this three-game series Thursday afternoon...The Cubs are 13-5 in their last 18 games at Wrigley Field.
07/19 01:57:14 ET