Cubs hope to salvage series with D-backs
(SportsNetwork.com) - The Chicago Cubs hope to salvage their three-game series with the Arizona Diamondbacks Sunday before they head back to the Windy City for a lengthy homestand.
The Cubs will play 10 in a row at Wrigley Field versus San Diego, St. Louis and Colorado, but first must take care of business with the Diamondbacks at Chase Field.
Chicago has lost four in a row and 10 of its last 12 games, including Saturday's 9-3 setback in the desert. Travis Wood was dealt the loss for allowing seven runs -- five earned -- in 5 1/3 innings. He walked four batters and struck out three.
"It's been a struggle," Wood said. "That's baseball. You have to overcome stuff and figure out how to work around things. So far, it's been a learning year, trying to figure out how to basically get back to what I do. We're going to get there, I promise you that. It'll just be a struggle until then."
Welington Castillo homered and Starlin Castro added two hits and an RBI for the Cubs, who have lost eight of their last nine road games and are only 20-34 as the visitor this season.
The Cubs hope Jake Arrieta can pitch the club back on track when he takes the mound Sunday. Arrieta is 5-1 with a 1.95 earned run average and has won his previous four decisions. He hasn't factored in the outcome of his past two starts, including a 5-4 win over Atlanta on July 11, when he was reached for three runs and four hits across 7 2/3 frames.
Arrieta has never faced Arizona and is 4-1 in eight road starts this season.
Arizona will have the brooms ready for Arrieta and the Cubs, and are 6-3 in the past nine contests. In last night's win over the Cubs, Miguel Montero had a bases-clearing double during a four-run fifth inning and Paul Goldschmidt finished 3-for-3 with a home run, three RBI and three runs scored.
Goldschmidt has reached base safely in 34 of his last 35 games and has homered in back-to-back contests. He leads the majors in on-base percentage since early June.
Wade Miley picked up the win in the start and evened his record at 6-6, holding the Cubs to three runs in seven innings with seven K's and one walk.
"The offense picked me up big time early in the game," said Miley, who is 3-0 in four July starts. "That kind of helped me get through the rest of it. ... The offense found lightning."
Arizona, which is 33-2 when leading after eight innings, has scored four or more runs in three straight and four of the previous six games. It has won three straight at Chase Field and will host Detroit next for three games.
Toeing the rubber for Arizona Sunday will be Josh Collmenter. He is 3-1 with a 2.96 ERA in his last five games (4 starts) and did not record a decision in a 4-3 win over Miami on July 9, when he delivered seven innings of one-run ball with six K's and a walk.
Collmenter is 7-5 overall this season with a 3.80 ERA and 5-2 at home. In five career games (2 starts) against the Cubs, the right-hander has no record and a 1.26 ERA across 14 1/3 innings.
The D-backs, who have won five of the past seven games at Chase Field, are 10-3 in the last 13 home games versus the Cubs and own a 4-2 lead in this season's series between the clubs.
07/20 09:32:15 ET