Saturday, June 07, 2014
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Preview: Marlins at Cubs

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[June 07, 2014]  The Chicago Cubs are on a 5-1 run and first baseman Anthony Rizzo has played a big role, belting four homers and knocking in nine runs in that span. Rizzo looks to go deep for the third straight game as the Cubs try to extend their season-high winning streak to five against the visiting Miami Marlins on Saturday. Chicago blew a three-run lead in the ninth inning Friday before taking the series opener in the 13th on Rizzo’s walk-off homer, which snapped Miami’s four-game win streak.

Rizzo leads the team in batting average (.276), homers (12), RBIs (33) and is among the major league leaders in walks with 40. Marlins slugger Giancarlo Stanton, who tops the National League in homers with 17 homers and 53 RBIs, but will have rebound after striking out four times in an 0-for-6 outing Friday. Marcell Ozuna has knocked in seven runs while riding a seven-game hitting streak for Miami.

TV: 4:05 p.m. ET, FSN Florida (Miami), WGN (Chicago)

PITCHING MATCHUP: Marlins LH Randy Wolf (1-1, 3.38 ERA) vs. Cubs RH Jeff Samardzija (1-5, 2.54)

Wolf rebounded from a disappointing first start with the Marlins to allow one run on three hits and strike out seven over six innings to beat Tampa Bay 3-1 on Monday. The 37-year-old Pepperdine product is 133-118 in 380 career appearances – 370 of them in a starting role. Starlin Castro is 8-for-24 with a homer against Wolf, who is 6-11 over 25 lifetime starts versus the Cubs with a 3.87 ERA.

Samardzija was roughed up in his last start, yielding eight runs in three innings, after posting his only victory of the season May 26. The former wide receiver at Notre Dame gave up three or fewer runs in his first eight starts and more than three in three of his last four. Adeiny Hechavarria is 3-for-3 with a homer versus Samardzija, who is 2-1 with a 5.46 ERA in 13 outings (four starts) against Miami.

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1. Marlins OF Reed Johnson is 9-for-24 as a pinch hitter this season with eight RBIs, which is second-most in the majors.

2. Chicago 3B Mike Olt is the first rookie since C Geovany Soto in 2008 to post nine home runs before June 1 for the Cubs.

3. Miami 1B Garrett Jones has recorded three hits in each of the last two games.

PREDICTION: Cubs 5, Marlins 3

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