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Harris: Cubs' Volstad Continues To Struggle

By Adam Harris

WRIGLEY FIELD - Chris Volstad continued his dissapointing season with the Cubs today.

Volstad labored through five innings giving up four hits, and five runs. He was hit hard, taken to the warning track three times by Dodgers outfielder Matt Kemp, but most importantly couldn't get key outs with runners in scoring position.

"Runners on and from the stretch has been a struggle," Volstad said. "I just have to be better in those situations. That's all it comes down to."

The key to the game for Volstad was the 2nd inning, when he intentionaly walked James Loney to load the bases. After a sacrifice fly by catcher Matt Treanor, starting pitcher Chris Capuano doubled over the head of Joe Mather in center field, scoring two.

"That was the big hit of the game," Volstad said. "I had second and third and one out. If I get out of that giving up one run, I would feel pretty good. He hit that ball pretty well, making it three-nothing instead of one-nothing. Yea, that was the big one."

The Cubs 5-1 loss to the Dodgers brings Volstad to 0-4 on the year with a 6.55 ERA, but it's too early to talk about him losing his spot in the starting rotation.

"It's way to early for that," Manager Dale Sveum said. "For some reason he has trouble getting out of the innings when with runners in scoring position."

Starlin Castro had another three hits in the game, two sharp singles to left and a dying quail to right. Since 2011, Castro leads the National League in multi-hit games with 70.

Another bright spot was Carlos Marmol who gave up no runs in his inning of work. He was wild at first, walking leadoff batter Andre Either, then advancing him to 2nd on a wild pitch to newly acquired Dodger Bobby Abreu. Marmol settled down, retiring the next three batters throwing mostly fastballs.

"Yea I threw more fastballs today. I feel very comfortable with the fastball, and when I need a slider, I throw a slider," Marmol said. "That's what they want me to do and that's what I did today. Throw more fastballs to try to get my slider back."

Tomorrow, Travis Wood will make his Cubs debut in place of Matt Garza who has come down with an illness. Garza was supposed to start today, but the illness prevented that as well.

Wood is 1-3 with a 5.08 ERA at Iowa so far this year.

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