2 key hits by Giancarlo Stanton help Marlins beat Cubs 4-2

Giancarlo Stanton homered in the fourth inning and singled home the go-ahead run with two outs in the eighth, helping the Miami Marlins send the Chicago Cubs to their fourth consecutive defeat, 4-2 on Thursday night.

Stanton's two hits hiked his average to .216.

The Cubs still have the best record in the majors, despite their longest losing streak of the season. The game marked the start of a season-high 11-game trip for the Cubs, and came after they were swept in a three-game series at Wrigley Field by the Cardinals.

Jon Lester allowed only two runs in seven innings, but Miami ended his streak of wins in five consecutive starts. The Cubs' David Ross led off the eighth with his sixth homer to make the score 2-all.

Christian Yelich started Miami's rally in the bottom of the eighth with a one-out walk against Pedro Strop (1-2). He advanced on a wild pitch and scored standing up on Stanton's opposite-field single.

J.T. Realmuto followed with an RBI double.

Kyle Barraclough (4-2) pitched a scoreless eighth. With closer A.J. Ramos being rested, David Phelps pitched out of a one-out, bases-loaded jam in the ninth when Chris Coghlan struck out and Ben Zobrist flied out.

The Cubs managed just seven hits and have totaled nine runs during their losing streak.

Miami's Marcell Ozuna made a costly error in center field and then atoned for the misplay by hitting his 16th homer in the sixth.

Stanton's homer was his 14th.

Wei-Yin Chen took a 2-1 lead into the eighth but departed after he allowed Ross' homer. Over the past three games, the Marlins' starting pitchers have allowed two runs in 22 innings.

The Cubs' Jason Heyward singled to start the fourth and continued to third when Ozuna let the ball roll past him. Kris Bryant followed with a sacrifice fly to put Chicago ahead 1-0.


Cubs: 1B Anthony Rizzo (stiff back) was held out of the starting lineup, and his status is day to day. "I don't think it's anything significant more than stiffness," manager Joe Maddon said. ... RHP Joe Nathan (Tommy John surgery) began a rehab assignment Thursday at Double-A Tennessee.


Cubs rookie Willson Contreras, playing in his fifth major league game, started at 1B for the first time to replace Rizzo. In the minors, Contreras played 1B, 2B, 3B, C, LF and RF.


RHP Kyle Hendricks (5-6, 2.94) is scheduled to start Friday for the Cubs against RHP Tom Koehler (6-6, 3.92).