MIAMI (CBSMiami/Gracenote) – It’s been a tough few days for the Miami Marlins against the defending world champs.
The Chicago Cubs look to wrap up a third straight series victory, and perhaps regain the National League Central lead, when they conclude a four-game road set against Miami on Sunday.
The Cubs haven’t won three consecutive series since late-April.
Chicago smacked 11 hits in a 5-3 win Saturday, as J.T. Realmuto hit a three-run homer in the first inning before the Marlins were blanked the rest of the way.
Miami is batting .176 in six games against the Cubs this season and has scored just 15 runs in those contests.
The Marlins had won five straight home series entering the weekend, but they can do no better than a split in this one.
The Cubs have won five of their last seven and are a half-game behind Milwaukee in the NL Central.
TV: 1:10 p.m. ET, CSN Chicago, FSN Florida (Miami)
PITCHING MATCHUP: Cubs LH Mike Montgomery (1-3, 2.26 ERA) vs. Marlins RH Edinson Volquez (3-8, 4.19)
Montgomery has improved in each of his three starts since joining the rotation, and he was dominant Tuesday against San Diego.
The 27-year-old allowed three hits and two walks over six scoreless innings to pick up his first win of the season.
Montgomery threw 3 1/3 scoreless frames to earn a save against the Marlins on June 5 in Chicago.
Volquez started the month with a no-hitter against Arizona and allowed just three hits while striking out 18 over 16 scoreless frames in his first two outings in June.
The 33-year-old has not been good his last two times out, though, giving up 11 runs (10 earned) in 8 2/3 innings.
Volquez is 7-0 with a 3.06 ERA in 12 games (11 starts) against the Cubs.
- Chicago OF/2B Ian Happ is 8-for-12 in the series and 10-for-18 during a five-game hitting streak.
- Marlins 2B Dee Gordon ranks second in the majors with 29 stolen bases, including three in six games against the Cubs.
- Cubs OF Jon Jay, a Miami native, is 9-for-23 in his last seven games against the Marlins.
(© Copyright 2017 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. Gracenote contributed to this report.)