Cubs turn to Jackson in home opener against Brewers

Journeyman right-hander Edwin Jackson makes start No. 2 for the Chicago Cubs - his eighth major-league team - when they host the Milwaukee Brewers to begin a three-game series with their home opener at Wrigley Field.

Jackson, who was drafted by the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2001, reached the majors two years later with the Dodgers and was with them through 2005 while going 6-4 in 19 appearances.

He's gone on to pitch for Tampa Bay, Detroit, Arizona, the Chicago White Sox, St. Louis and Washington, then came to the Cubs to begin 2013 after signing a four-year deal worth $52 million on Jan. 2.

He opened with a 3-0 loss at Pittsburgh on April 3 after going five innings and allowing two runs on three hits with a walk and five strikeouts.

In seven career meetings with the Brewers, he is 3-2 with a 3.06 earned run average in 47 full innings.

Starting for Milwaukee is Mexican-born righty Marco Estrada, who won a career- best five games last season while making 23 starts in 29 appearances.

The 29-year-old was drafted by the Washington Nationals in 2005 and pitched 15 times for them in 2008 and 2009, then went to the Brewers on waivers in February 2010.

He's won nine times in 80 appearances - 32 starts - for Milwaukee and made his 2013 debut last Tuesday. Estrada went five innings and allowed four runs on nine hits en route to a no-decision in the Brewers' 8-4 loss to Colorado.

Eight career meetings with the Cubs have yielded two wins with a 3.86 ERA across 23 1/3 innings, including 30 strikeouts and just 19 hits allowed.

On Sunday in Milwaukee, Eric Hinske clubbed a two-run homer in the top of the 11th inning and Heath Bell was just good enough to lock down the save, as the Arizona Diamondbacks took an 8-7 win over the Brewers at Miller Park.

Hinske pinch hit after Cliff Pennington led the 11th off with a double. He then crushed a breaking pitch from John Axford (0-1) well past the centerfield wall to put the Diamondbacks on top by two.

Bell came on and surrendered three hits, with Jonathan Lucroy's run scoring single putting runners on the corners. However, Bell fanned Rickie Weeks and pinch-hitting pitcher Kyle Lohse to end the game.

Milwaukee, losers of five straight, rallied with a two-run ninth inning off Arizona closer J.J. Putz to send the game to extras. Norichika Aoki went 4- for-6 with three RBI in the setback.

In Atlanta, Ramiro Pena hit a go-ahead two-run single in the sixth inning and Tim Hudson fired 6 2/3 innings of one-run ball in the Braves' 5-1 win over the Cubs in the finale of a three-game set.

Jeff Samardzija (1-1) struck out a career-high 13 batters, but allowed four runs on four hits and four free passes over 5 2/3 frames for the Cubs, who have dropped four of their last five games.

"It's a double-edged sword when you strike out guys like that," Samardzija said. "Your pitch count gets up, you're showing them a lot of pitches and you're doing some different things. Obviously it's not a bad thing. I felt good. It ended up coming back to haunt me."

The Brewers won 13 of 17 games in the head-to-head series in 2012, including six of eight at Wrigley Field.