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De La Cruz homers in the 9th inning as the Marlins beat the Cubs 3-2 in doubleheader opener

Sat, Apr 20, 2024
MLB News (AP)

De La Cruz homers in the 9th inning as the Marlins beat the Cubs 3-2 in doubleheader opener

CHICAGO (AP) - Bryan De La Cruz hit a two-run homer off Adbert Alzolay in the ninth inning, and the Miami Marlins beat the Chicago Cubs 3-2 on Saturday in the opener of a split doubleheader.

Luis Arraez collected three more hits for Miami, which had dropped four of five. Jesus Sanchez and Nick Gordon each had two hits.

Arraez is batting .347 (17 for 49) in his last 12 games. He singled with one out in the ninth, and De La Cruz followed with a drive to left-center for his fifth homer after he also went deep in each of his previous two games.

Manager Skip Schumaker said the Marlins were planning to pinch run for De La Cruz if he got on base. De La Cruz didn't like that idea and offered an alternative.

"I told them, 'What do you mean, a pinch runner? I'm going to get a homer here. You're not going to need to do that,' " De La Cruz said through an interpreter.

It was the fourth blown save in seven chances for Alzolay (1-2).

"We need Adbert to get outs," manager Craig Counsell said. "Regardless of where it is, we need Adbert to be an effective member of the bullpen. I strongly believe that he will be. It obviously stings when it comes at the end of the game there."

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Mike Tauchman and Nick Madrigal began the bottom of the ninth with singles off Tanner Scott. The runners advanced on a sacrifice before Alexander Canario struck out and Nico Hoerner grounded out.

Calvin Faucher (1-0) struck out four in two scoreless innings, and Scott earned his third save.

Patrick Wisdom hit a two-run triple and Hoerner had two hits for the Cubs, who had won five of six.

The doubleheader was scheduled after rain postponed Thursday's series opener.

Wisdom gave the Cubs a 2-0 lead with his hit off the wall in right-center in the third against Jesus Luzardo. Wisdom was activated from the injured list Thursday after missing the beginning of the season because of a back strain.

De La Cruz hit a sacrifice fly in the fifth, chasing Javier Assad. Luke Little, who was added as the Cubs' 27th man for the doubleheader, struck out Jazz Chisholm Jr. with two on, ending the inning.

Alzolay walked Emmanuel Rivera in the eighth but got Vidal Brujan to fly out to end the threat.

Assad allowed three hits in 4 2/3 innings.

Luzardo struck out six in six innings for Miami.

"A lot of first strikes, velo was up, slider was great, he was under control the whole game," Schumaker said. "We know he's a dude and he's acting like the dude. That's more of the ace we're used to."

Tim Anderson, a two-time All-Star during eight seasons with the White Sox, went 0 for 1 as a pinch hitter.

TRAINER'S ROOM

Marlins: LHP A.J. Puk (left shoulder fatigue) was placed on the 15-day injured list, and RHP Kyle Tyler was brought up from Triple-A Jacksonville. LHP Josh Simpson was transferred to the 60-day injured list.

Cubs: OF Ian Happ (left hamstring tightness) was out of the lineup for both games. He left after six innings on Friday.

UP NEXT

RHP Roddery Munoz is scheduled to make his big league debut for the Marlins in the second game of the doubleheader. LHP Shota Imanaga (2-0, 0.00) takes the mound for the Cubs.

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AP MLB: https://apnews.com/MLB

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