In Ozzie Guillen's first game back since his five-game suspension, the Miami Marlins defeated the Chicago Cubs, 5-2. The Cubs fell to 3-8 on the season and are in the midst of a three-game losing streak.
Here is what we learned from this defeat.
The Cubs Cannot Win Close Ball Games
The Cubs do not have the entire package to be able to squeak out ball-games where they are leading 1-0 or even 2-0. Their bullpen is not solid enough to be able to hold these close games because their current bullpen is consisted of unproven rookies and mediocre veteran talent.
The only way the Cubs would be able to win consistently is if they were to score five or more runs a game, but their offensive is not capable of creating such games on a daily basis.
Not a Defense State of Mind
During spring training, the Cubs preached defense, defense, defense. They were atrocious on the field last season, and their main goal before the season started was to improve on every aspect of their fielding skills.
However, Castro still looks dumbfounded on certain plays to begin this season, and it was Cubs pitcher Ryan Dempster who contributed to his demise in what appeared to be a promising outing. His throwing error led to the Marlins' lead and two unearned runs.
At the end of the night, Cubs committed two errors that helped the Marlins score three unearned runs.
Offensive Woes Continue
The Cubs squandered their chances of making a dent into the scoreboard because they grounded into four double plays and were 1-5 with runners in scoring position.
Opposing pitchers have nothing to fear when they face a Chicago lineup that is batting .236 on the season with a lousy OBP of .301. What is even more frightening is that Los Angeles outfielder Matt Kemp has six home runs on the season, which is one more than the entire Cubs roster.
Steve Clevenger Provides a Spark
With Geovany Soto struggling to open up the season, Steve Clevenger has taken full advantage of this situation when his name is inserted into the lineup. He not only looks terrific behind the plate, but he has provided an offensive weapon the Cubs desperately need.
With the departure of Sean Marshall, Russell became the main left-handed pitcher out of the bullpen. In three and one-third innings pitched, he has done a masterful job of keeping the ball down and the hitters off-balanced.
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