Game Ninety-One: Cubs (37-53) vs. Marlins (44-47)
Game Time – 1:20pm CDT
Coverage – TV: Comcast SportsNet – Radio: 720 WGN, XM Radio Channel 187/914
Location – Wrigley Field, Chicago
Paul Maholm (7-6, 4.33/1.33) vs. Mark Buehrle (9-8, 3.13/1.13)
Weather permitting … The Cubs finish out the six-game homestand this afternoon with the series and season finale against the Marlins. With Wednesday’s rain-shortened victory, the Cubs guaranteed themselves a winning homestand (4-1). The Cubs have won 13 of 18 and are 4-0-1 in their last five series.
Dale Sveum’s team finally beat the Marlins (1-4) and while the Fish have taken the season series, a win this afternoon would be a good way for the Cubs to finish the season against Miami after the way it began.
While the Cubs have played better of late against southpaws, they are still 9-18 in games started by lefties this season … and the offense will have their hands full today with Mark Buehrle.
Reed Johnson and Jeff Baker should be in the starting nine this afternoon and maybe this time around, the Cubs will change their game plan against Buehrle.
This afternoon it all starts with Paul Maholm … Paul Maholm began the second half the way he finished it … with a win. After two very good starts against the Astros (no runs on four hits with a walk and five strikeouts in 8 1/3 innings) and Braves (one run on eight hits with a walk and five strikeouts in six innings) before the break, Maholm beat the Diamondbacks for the first time in his career with seven solid innings (one run on six hits with a walk and five strikeouts). Maholm is 3-0 in his last three starts with a 0.74 ERA and a 0.86 WHIP.
Paul Maholm has pitched well at Wrigley this season (5-2 in nine starts with a 3.02 ERA and a 1.04 WHIP) and will face the Marlins for the first time this season.
Maholm is 3-5 in eight career starts against the Fish with a 5.67 ERA and a 1.24 WHIP.
Marlins Career Numbers against Paul Maholm
- Emilio Bonifacio – 3-for-7 with a walk
- John Buck – 3-for-3 with a double and a walk
- Omar Infante – 0-for-10
- Austin Kearns – 7-for-24 with a double and three walks
- Carlos Lee – 15-for-58 with five double and two walks
- Logan Morrison – 2-for-4 with a walk
- Hanley Ramirez – 6-for-17 with a double, two home runs and three walks
- Jose Reyes – 8-for-25
- Carlos Zambrano – 3-for-8 with a double
After a rough outing against the Red Sox on June 19 at Fenway, Mark Buehrle has been just about as good as it gets. Buehrle has allowed three earned runs over his last four games (28 2/3 innings). There might be a lot of things wrong with the Marlins right now, but Mark Buehrle is not one of the problems.
Mark Buehrle is coming off an excellent start against the Nationals. Buehrle held the Nats to one run on six hits with two walks and seven strikeouts in seven innings. Buehrle has completed at least seven innings in each of his last four starts and is a perfect 4-0 with a 0.94 ERA and a 1.08 WHIP (five walks with 29 strikeouts in 28 2/3 innings).
Mark Buehrle has pretty much owned the Cubs during his career (6-4 in 14 starts with a 3.88 ERA and a 1.24 WHIP, 3-2 in seven starts at Wrigley with a 4.80 ERA and a 1.47 WHIP) and pitched an eight-inning gem against them back in April (one run on six hits with no walks and five strikeouts).
Cubs Career Numbers against Mark Buehrle
- Jeff Baker – 4-for-9 with a double
- Darwin Barney – 1-for-4
- Starlin Castro – 2-for-9
- David DeJesus – 14-for-78 with two doubles, a home run and three walks
- Reed Johnson – 11-for-34 with three doubles
- Joe Mather – 1-for-1
- Alfonso Soriano – 7-for-40 with a double, two home runs and a walk
- Geovany Soto – 2-for-13 with a double and a walk
- Luis Valbuena – 1-for-4 with a home run and two walks
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