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Marlins struggle at the plate, lose 5-3 to Cubs in 13 innings

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CHICAGO - Miami had one big inning in an important spot, and that was it for the Marlins' lineup.

Reed Johnson hit a tying, two-run single with two outs in Miami's three-run ninth, but Anthony Rizzo hit a two-run homer in the 13th inning to give the Chicago Cubs a 5-3 victory Friday.

The Marlins had just two hits in extra innings. Their last nine hitters went down in order.

"Other than the ninth inning, you know, mounting the rally, which was good to see, we put together some nice at-bats and gave ourselves a chance to play some extras," manager Mike Redmond said. "But then really in the extra innings, we didn't get anything going at all."

Garrett Jones had three hits for Miami, which had won four in a row. Nathan Eovaldi gave up three runs and six hits in 7 2-3 innings in his first career appearance against the Cubs.

"I felt like I threw the ball well," Eovaldi said. "Was able to use both sides of the plate, slider was good, and I was able to throw my curveball a lot today for strikes."

Rizzo also had a two-run double in the eighth as the Cubs earned their season-high fourth consecutive victory. Jason Hammel pitched seven scoreless innings and Chris Coghlan had an RBI double in his first game against his former team.

Junior Lake hit a leadoff single against Kevin Slowey (1-1) before Rizzo connected for his 12th homer, belting a long drive to right.

"I had a pretty good idea that Rizzo was going to be aggressive and wasn't able to get the ball where I needed to get it," Slowey said.

Carlos Villanueva (2-5) pitched two perfect innings as Chicago got its first four-game winning streak since last July 6-9. Coghlan and Nate Schierholtz each had two hits.

"I think they're playing with a lot of confidence right now and they're continuing to pick each other up," Cubs manager Rick Renteria said. "I think they're starting to feel and know they can do this."

Hammel allowed six hits, struck out eight and walked one, extending his scoreless streak to 14 innings over his last two outings. The right-hander, who could be an attractive trade target for a contender at next month's deadline, is 2-1 with a 1.42 ERA over his last four starts.

Hammel was in line for his seventh victory, which would have matched his total from last season, before the Marlins scored three times in the ninth against closer Hector Rondon. Justin Bour had a run-scoring grounder before Johnson, another pinch hitter, came up with his big hit against one of his former teams.

Bour was initially ruled safe on his grounder to first, but the call was overturned when a replay review showed Rondon got his foot on the bag in time. There was another overturned call in the 10th inning when Schierholtz's diving try for Casey McGehee's sinking liner to right was initially ruled a successful catch.

Mixing a mid-90s (mph) fastball with a big, slow curve, Eovaldi mowed down his first 14 hitters. The 6-foot-2 right-hander struck out the first batter in each of his first three innings, and John Baker's foul liner in the third was the closest Chicago got to a hit in the early part of the game.

Schierholtz then stopped Eovaldi's perfect run with a two-out single in the fifth for his 500th career hit. Coghlan followed with a liner to right for his third RBI in 24 games this season, scoring Schierholtz all the way from first for a 1-0 lead.

That was it for Chicago against Eovaldi until the eighth, when the pitcher misplayed a comebacker from Emilio Bonifacio into a base hit. Rizzo then came up with his big double later in the inning.

"I thought Nate was tremendous," Redmond said. "I thought his stuff was good. Other than not being to field that ball, that comebacker, and getting an out there, I thought he did a great job."

NOTES: Redmond said he's getting good reports on SS Rafael Furcal (left hamstring strain), who is on a rehab assignment with Double-A Jacksonville. "It's just a matter of him being able to stay healthy," Redmond said. "I'm not sure when that day will come, when he's ready, but all the reports I've gotten are that he's feeling better and on the way to Miami at some point." ... Cubs RHP Jeff Samardzija (1-5, 2.54 ERA) faces 37-year-old Marlins LHP Randy Wolf (1-1, 3.38) on Saturday.

___

Jay Cohen can be reached at http://www.twitter.com/jcohenap

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