Riding on the heels of a crushing sweep at the hands of the Braves, the Marlins made a quick turnaround as they made their way up to the North Side of Chicago for three straight afternoon games in Wrigleyville. Sweeping the Cubs at home less than a week ago surely boosted their confidence heading into the series opener as Edward Cabrera toed the rubber against Justin Steele. Alas, after some mental mistakes on the basepaths and physical mistakes on the mound, they dropped their fourth game in a row, sending them below .500.
The game started rough for Edward as leadoff man Nico Hoerner got on base with a single. Cabrera threw over once before looking in to pitch to Dansby Swanson. Before he could even throw that first pitch, Nico was dancing off first and made it halfway to second, which alarmed Eddy and caused him to step off and use his second disengagement before even throwing a pitch. A few pitches later, Nico did it again, and Edward had no choice but to throw behind him and try to pick him off. He was unsuccessful and was charged with a balk, the first disengagement balk charged to a Marlins pitcher this season. He then went to third on Jacob Stallings’ third passed ball of the season and scored on a single by Seiya Suzuki.
The score would remain 1-0 all the way through the top of the fifth inning as Justin Steele kept Marlins hitters at bay. In that inning, Bryan De La Cruz hit a leadoff single and went to second a sacrifice bunt by Jacob Stallings, but none of it mattered as Nico Hoerner made a leaping catch on a liner by Garrett Hampson, and DLC was caught in between second and third. A lineout double play to end the inning. After the game, Skip Schumaker clearly pointed out how much these mental mistakes cost the team games. He took the blame for not stressing the issue in the clubhouse, but in the end, the onus is on the players to keep their wits about them. This has been a theme recently, and it has to stop if they want to win games.
As for the physical mistakes, those came in the form of two curveballs left out over the middle of the plate by Eddy that resulted in a single and a two-run home run to put the Cubs up 3-0. A strikeout of Seiya Suzuki would end both the inning and Edward's outing.
His final line: 5.0 IP, 5 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 1 BB, 8 K, 1 HR, 1 HB, 1 BK, 95/57 P/S.
The rest of the game was business as usual for both sides. The Marlins pushed across a run in the sixth inning to avoid the shutout. Tanner Scott nearly pitched a clean eighth inning, but Garrett Hampson slipped in his pursuit of a Cody Bellinger fly ball, resulting in a double. Two batters later, Scott allowed an RBI single to Team Israel legend Matt Mervis—his first hit and RBI in the big leagues added an insurance run for the Cubbies.
The rest of the bullpen was solid, including Steven Okert, who struck out the side in the sixth. Double plays in both the eighth and ninth innings for the Marlins left everyone with a bad taste in their mouths as they dropped this one by the score of 4-1.
Noah’s Notes and What’s Next
- This ballpark is absolutely GORGEOUS!
- From my seat in the press box, I can see CTA Red and Purple line trains beyond the out-of-town scoreboard and three parallel lines of planes approaching Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport from out over Lake Michigan, which can be seen beyond right field.
- This is the first time all season that the Marlins have lost a game after allowing four runs or less. They are now 16-17, including 13-6 against teams other than the Braves and Mets.
- Luis Arraez had another three-hit game.
- Bryan Hoeing will toe the rubber tomorrow at 1:20 PM CT.
- I will be back on coverage for the game on Sunday.
- Good Shabbos!
- ‘Til Tmrw!