(Sports Network) - The Milwaukee Brewers haven't won a series over the Chicago Cubs since last May and will try to do so tonight in the second portion of a three-game series between NL Central members at Miller Park.
Milwaukee won two of three matchups with the Cubs last May 8-10 in Brew City and recorded a 3-2 victory in last night's series opener thanks to Casey McGehee's two-run single with two outs in the bottom of the ninth inning. Rickie Weeks and Prince Fielder both scored on the hit, while Corey Hart clubbed his 15th home run of the season.
John Axford collected the win despite giving up the go-ahead run in the ninth behind Brewers starter Yovani Gallardo, who threw seven scoreless frames in the no-decision, scattering four hits and a pair of walks with seven strikeouts.
The Brewers were coming off Sunday's 4-3 win in 10 innings at St. Louis and just won for the third time in nine tries. They will also host Texas for three games on this current homestand.
Randy Wolf hopes to get into the win column on a more regular basis and will make his 13th start of the season tonight for Milwaukee. He is 2-4 with a 5.71 earned run average in his last seven starts and lost at St. Louis the last time out on Friday in an 8-0 decision.
Wolf allowed five runs and six hits in 6 2/3 innings to fall to 4-5 and raise his ERA to 4.66. The veteran lefty, who is 2-1 in six home starts in 2010, has yet to face the Cubs this season and owns a 5-7 mark and a 4.22 ERA in 17 career matchups against them.
Chicago has alternated wins and losses over its previous five games and lost for the eighth time in 12 tries last night. Carlos Marmol gave up the game- winning hit to McGehee to absorb the loss and Ted Lilly's eight innings of one-run ball went to the wayside. Lilly also fanned eight batters.
"Going into the ninth inning with a lead, you feel good about it with your closer, but it didn't happen," Cubs manager Lou Piniella said. "We should have put more runs on the board."
Tyler Colvin had two hits and an RBI, and both Starlin Castro and Kosuke Fukudome also ended with a pair of hits for the Cubs, who remained 6 1/2 games behind Cincinnati and St. Louis for the NL Central lead.
The Cubs are 2-5 on a nine-game road trip and will return to the Windy City after this set to kick off a nine-game homestand.
Chicago veteran Carlos Zambrano will make his second start Wednesday since his demotion to the bullpen, but his initial appearance after his relief stint didn't go as planned. In a 3-1 defeat at Houston on Friday, Zambrano was dealt the loss for allowing three runs and six hits in 4 1/3 innings.
Zambrano, who was shifted to the bullpen in late April after going 1-2 with a subpar 7.45 earned run average in four starts, and had not allowed a run in any of his last five appearances as a reliever. The three-time National League All-Star has no record in two games (1 start) against Milwaukee this season and is 10-8 with a 3.82 earned run average in 28 career appearances, 26 of which have been starts, in this series.
In 18 games (5 starts) this season, Zambrano owns a 1-4 mark and a 6.14 ERA.
Chicago leads the 2010 series with the Brewers by a 5-2 count and swept them in three games at Miller Park from April 23-25. The Cubs have won 15 of the past 23 matchups between the teams.