Chicago at Florida

Chi. Cubs
W: C. Coleman (2-3) L: C. Volstad (2-3)
HR: CHC - M. Byrd (3)   FLA - M. Stanton (9)

Wild yet effective Coleman sets tone as Cubs sweep wire reports

MIAMI -- The Chicago Cubs wobbled into Miami with a three-game losing streak and departed two nights later with their first series sweep of the season.

"This game is weird," outfielder Marlon Byrd said.

Byrd homered for the second straight night Thursday, and Casey Coleman had a career-high seven strikeouts in 5 2/3 shutout innings to beat the Florida Marlins 5-1.

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After blowing leads to lose both games in a series at Cincinnati, the Cubs bounced back by defeating Florida twice.

"To play the way we did in Cincinnati -- we should have won," Byrd said. "Here we get two wins against a team that is very good."

The Marlins remained 1½ games behind NL East leader Philadelphia, but they are sputtering on offense. Against Coleman and four relievers, they stranded 12 runners and went 1 for 9 with runners in scoring position.

"That's pretty much the story," Florida manager Edwin Rodriguez said. "It's not a matter of lacking effort or intensity, it's just not going our way right now."

Coleman (2-3) walked five but retired five batters with runners in scoring position and lowered his ERA from 7.22 to 6.03. Several of his outs came on hard-hit balls.

"In some ways I consider myself lucky," Coleman said. "But you have to make pitches, and I feel like I did that for the most part."

He left after throwing 109 pitches, and the bullpen completed an eight-hitter, with Carlos Marmol pitching a scoreless ninth. Marmol has thrown 22 2/3 consecutive shutout innings on the road since Aug. 25.

Byrd hit a two-run homer, his third of the season, and believes he has finally found his long-ball stroke.

"You start searching for it and start thinking too much," he said. "All of a sudden you clear your mind and it comes."

Starlin Castro hit a two-out, two-run double in the ninth. Reed Johnson doubled home Chicago's first run of the game. A lineup that struggled to generate power for much of the season totaled 12 runs in two games in Miami, and the Cubs have homered in the past four games.

"We've been hitting singles and more singles," Coleman said. "Now we're starting to drive the ball more. Everyone has confidence in these guys. This summer at Wrigley is going to be a lot of fun."

First the Cubs head to Fenway Park, where they will play this weekend for the first time since the 1918 World Series.

"I'm a history buff," Byrd said. "But our focus is going in and winning."

The Cubs were only 2 for 11 with runners in scoring position before Castro doubled in the ninth off Burke Badenhop to score Koyie Hill and Kosuke Fukudome, who reached on singles.

Florida's Mike Stanton struck out three times against Coleman, then hit his ninth homer in the eighth off Kerry Wood. Hanley Ramirez, trying to shake a season-long slump, had two hits and hiked his average to .217.

But leadoff hitter Chris Coghlan went 0 for 5 with three strikeouts, and he's in a 3-for-33 slump that has dropped his average to .238.

Chris Volstad (2-3) allowed three runs in five innings. Florida trailed 3-0 when he was pulled for a pinch-hitter after throwing only 71 pitches.

"I felt great, as good as I've felt," Volstad said. "Other than the pitch to Byrd that he hit out, I had nine ground balls. I was in the zone, not falling behind too many guys. Definitely a step in the right direction."


  • The Marlins lead the NL with a record of 127-107 (.543) in interleague play going into their weekend series against Tampa Bay.
  • Heading into the Cubs' weekend series at Fenway Park, Byrd has a career average of .378 (17 for 45) in 12 games there.
  • Ramirez committed his eighth error in the first inning.
  • Fukudome is 1 for 14 lifetime against Volstad.
Copyright 2017 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
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Casey Coleman walks five, but pitches 5 2/3 scoreless innings while striking out a career-high seven. (AP)
Casey Coleman walks five, but pitches 5 2/3 scoreless innings while striking out a career-high seven. (AP)

Players of the Game

S. Castro
AB 5
R 0
H 2
HR 0

M. Byrd
AB 4
R 1
H 2
HR 1

Related Video

Chicago Cubs
Kosuke Fukudome, RF4110100 .327
Darwin Barney, 2B5000004 .322
Starlin Castro, SS5022021 .331
Aramis Ramirez, 3B5110013 .287
Carlos Pena, 1B2110111 .237
Marlon Byrd, CF4122013 .312
Reed Johnson, LF3011022 .395
Koyie Hill, C4110014 .243
Casey Coleman, P2000001 .200
    Scott Maine, P0000000 .000
   a- Blake DeWitt, PH1000000 .257
    John Grabow, P0000000 .000
    Kerry Wood, P0000000 .000
   b- Jeff Baker, PH1000011 .342
    Carlos Marmol, P0000000 .000
a-flied out for Maine in the 7th
b-struck out for Wood in the 9th
2B - Starlin Castro (10, Badenhop), Aramis Ramirez (9, Volstad), Carlos Pena (3, Volstad), Marlon Byrd (8, Webb), Reed Johnson (5, Volstad)
HR - Marlon Byrd (3, Volstad)
RBI - Starlin Castro 2 (20), Marlon Byrd 2 (11), Reed Johnson (11)
2-OUT RBI - Starlin Castro 2 (8)
Team LOB - 8
Chicago Cubs
Casey Coleman (W,2-3) 5.2400570 6.03
Scott Maine (H,1) 0.1000000 0.00
John Grabow (H,4) 1100000 4.02
Kerry Wood (H,7) 1211011 2.65
Carlos Marmol 1100020 1.35
WP - John Grabow (2)
Pitches-Strikes - Casey Coleman 109-60, Scott Maine 4-2, John Grabow 8-7, Kerry Wood 12-9, Carlos Marmol 16-14
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Casey Coleman 6-4, John Grabow 1-2, Carlos Marmol 1-0
Batters Faced - Casey Coleman 26, Scott Maine 1, John Grabow 4, Kerry Wood 5, Carlos Marmol 4
Florida Marlins
Chris Coghlan, CF5000030 .238
Hanley Ramirez, SS5020000 .217
Logan Morrison, LF4020111 .316
Gaby Sanchez, 1B4000114 .317
Greg Dobbs, 3B4010002 .337
Mike Stanton, RF4111031 .261
John Buck, C2020200 .233
Omar Infante, 2B3000103 .235
Chris Volstad, P1000001 .231
   a- Scott Cousins, PH1000010 .167
    Brian Sanches, P00000001.000
   b- Wes Helms, PH1000002 .211
    Ryan Webb, P0000000 .000
   c- Emilio Bonifacio, PH1000011 .286
    Burke Badenhop, P00000001.000
a-struck out for Volstad in the 5th
b-flied out for Sanches in the 6th
c-struck out for Webb in the 8th
2B - Greg Dobbs (8, Coleman)
HR - Mike Stanton (9, Wood)
RBI - Mike Stanton (21)
Team LOB - 12
DP - Dobbs-Infante-G. Sanchez
PB - John Buck (4)
E - Hanley Ramirez (8, Misplayed grounder)
Florida Marlins
Chris Volstad (L,2-3) 5433151 5.73
Brian Sanches 1100110 1.74
Ryan Webb 2100010 2.61
Burke Badenhop 1322020 4.26
IBB - Pena by Brian Sanches
HBP - Johnson (by Brian Sanches), Pena (by Ryan Webb)
Pitches-Strikes - Chris Volstad 71-43, Brian Sanches 26-14, Ryan Webb 34-24, Burke Badenhop 20-13
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Chris Volstad 9-1, Brian Sanches 1-1, Ryan Webb 3-2
Batters Faced - Chris Volstad 20, Brian Sanches 6, Ryan Webb 8, Burke Badenhop 6
Game Information
Attendance - 16345
Game Time - 3:06
Temperature - 86
Umpires - Home - Paul Emmel, First Base - Rob Drake, Second Base - Gary Darling, Third Base - David Rackley