Marlins relievers need a break and Nathan Eovaldi, fresh off the paternity list, needs to be the one to give it to them in the series finale against the Cubs on Wednesday at Marlins Park.
If Eovaldi can pitch into the eighth on Wednesday, like he did in his last start against the Cubs on June 6, it would take a lot of pressure off a bullpen that, in the last five days, has logged 26 innings and allowed seven runs.
But the extra pressure on the 'pen began with Eovaldi's last start against the Pirates on Friday the 13th, when he allowed six earned runs in 4 2/3 innings. The bullpen was responsible for the remaining 8 1/3 innings, as the Marlins forced extras but eventually dropped the 8-6, 13-inning game.
"I think I gave up six hits when I was ahead in the count," Eovaldi said after that loss, which came two days before he went on paternity leave. "I just wasn't putting them away. My fastball command wasn't really there. My slider was flat. ... They hit the ball well. They capitalized on my mistakes."
The Cubs will start Jake Arrieta, who has a 0.51 ERA in June. He faced the Marlins for the first time in his career on June 8 and was able to shut them down, allowing only three hits and striking out seven batters in six innings.
Arrieta matched a career high with nine strikeouts in his last start vs. the Phillies on Friday. He threw seven scoreless innings of two-hit ball and received a win, his first one of the month.
"Looked like his ball had a lot of life," Cubs manager Rick Renteria said. "He was obviously commanding the zone. Made some pitches when he needed to. Got us through seven innings and did a really good job."
In his last six starts dating to May 13, Arrieta has given up seven earned runs over 33 2/3 innings for a 1.87 ERA. In that span, he's 2-1 and has 36 strikeouts and 11 walks.
"For me, once the ball gets rolling, things tend to come a little bit easier," Arrieta said. "It's never easy to win and have success at a high level. But you do things the right way and learn day in and day out and try and get better with at least one thing every time you come to the yard, you give yourself a good opportunity to perform at a high level."
Cubs: Starters getting the short end of the stick
The Cubs have recorded 35 quality starts this season -- but you couldn't tell from their starters' records, as they have just 16 wins to show for it.
The rotation also has 13 no-decisions and six losses in those games, despite a 1.80 ERA in 240 1/3 innings.
Chicago, which is 18-17 in quality starts this season, had won 11 of the last 13 games dating to May 17 in which it had received a quality start entering Tuesday.
Jeff Samardzija was the latest pitcher to receive a no-decision, as Chicago's bullpen let his six-inning, three-run (two earned) effort go to waste in Tuesday night's 6-5 loss to Miami.
Marlins: Marisnick promotion proving fruitful
Center fielder Jake Marisnick was promoted on Monday amidst a flurry of nine roster moves made by the Marlins. Put into the leadoff spot for Monday night's game, the prospect immediately made an impact, kicking off the first inning with a single on the third pitch he saw before stealing second and scoring on Giancarlo Stanton's homer.
Marisnick reached base two more times, via a single and a walk, and he stole another bag before the end of the 13-inning marathon.
"Jake's an exciting player," said manager Mike Redmond, who also managed Marisnick when they were both with the Dunedin Blue Jays in 2012. "I think he showed that last night. When he gets on, he's not scared, he's aggressive, he's gonna try to steal bases to get himself in scoring position, which he was able to do."
On Tuesday, Marisnick was dropped to the seventh spot in the order to make way for Rafael Furcal, and he added two more hits.
• With a win Wednesday, the Cubs would take consecutive road series for the first time in nearly a year. They took two of three games in both Milwaukee and Seattle in June 25-30, 2013. Chicago snapped a 15-series road winless streak by taking two of three games in Philadelphia last weekend.
• Cubs historian Ed Hartig reported that Travis Wood, who hit a 13th-inning, game-winning RBI double on Monday, was the first Cubs pitcher in nearly 25 years with a game-winning RBI in extra innings.
• Entering Tuesday, the Chicago bullpen's 3.01 ERA was the fourth-lowest ERA in the National League.
• Adeiny Hechavarria's four-hit night on Tuesday tied a career high, set on April 4 vs. the Padres.
• Monday's 13-inning affair was the Marlins' 10th extra-inning game of the season. Only three teams have played more, as the A's, Mets and Dodgers have all played 11.
• Casey McGehee leads all NL third baseman with a .977 fielding percentage. He has made just three errors in 131 total chances this season.
Maria Torres is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.