Even though the bullpen couldn’t hold onto the late lead, the Chicago Cubs have plenty to be excited about following the six-game homestand. Winning five of the six helps to overshadow the bitterness of seeing the win streak halted.
After both starters left the game, the teams exchanged strikes for three innings, but after Garrett Jones tied the game in the eighth with a sacrifice fly, a wild pitch put the Miami Marlins up for good 4-3, snapping the Cubs five-game win streak.
The Cubs (25-35) got a great start from Jake Arrieta, who left after six scoreless innings. The Marlins (33-30) got an equally impressive start from Henderson Alvarez, although he had to leave the game in the sixth after coming down awkwardly fielding a high throw. After throwing one pitch, Alvarez left the game with what is being called a left hip strain.
The Marlins bullpen then allowed a two-run triple to Nate Schierholtz, with both runs being charged to Alvarez – one of which were earned.
As good as the Cubs bullpen has been during the last 24 games (2.01 ERA), today just wasn’t their day. Brian Schlitter allowed a walk, then an infield single before giving up back-to-back RBI singles to J.T. Realmuto and Adeiny Hechavarria to tie it at 2-2.
Miami reliever A.J. Ramos then hit pinch-hitter Darwin Barney to start the bottom of the inning. Junior Lake dropped a perfectly placed bloop double down the right field line. The Marlins then took no chances, intentionally walking Anthony Rizzo. Luis Valbuena then coaxed the bases loaded walk to score Barney for the 3-2 lead.
Pedro Strop (0-3) then gave up the dreaded lead-off walk in the eighth, followed by a hit batter and a Casey McGehee single before throwing the wild pitch to allow what would be the winning run to score.
Mike Dunn (5-3) earned with win for Miami.