Marquis Returns to Chicago

Marquis stymied Cubs' offense (AP)

Right-hander Jason Marquis made his 200th career start and a successful return to Wrigley Field in his first outing there since the Cubs traded him to the Rockies in January for reliever Luis Vizcaino.

This start followed his Rockies debut in their home opener Friday, and in both cases, Marquis provided a veteran presence, a sinkerball specialist capable of getting opponents to beat the ball into the ground and a pitcher capable of helping himself with the bat.

Marquis went 23-18 in two seasons with the Cubs, but he was booed by a sellout crowd of 39,361 when introduced. Marquis simply went about his business, which to date with the Rockies has been remarkably efficient.

The 30-year-old is 2-0 with a 1.93 ERA. He pitched seven innings in a 5-2 win over the Cubs after going that distance against the World Series champion Phillies on Friday at Coors Field and winning 10-3.

Manager Clint Hurdle, knowing Aaron Cook and Ubaldo Jimenez would be at the front of the rotation, said he targeted Marquis for that Coors Field assignment soon after the trade, knowing Marquis would have no trouble dealing with a sellout crowd and the emotions of the day.

Marquis got 10 groundball outs against the Cubs after getting 13 against the Phillies. He has allowed just 10 hits in 14 innings -- three doubles and seven singles -- and has limited opposing hitters to one hit in 12 at-bats with runners in scoring position.

A famously good-hitting pitcher, Marquis is 3-for-5 with a double and three RBIs this season. Against the Cubs, he singled home the Rockies' first two runs with two outs in the second. Lifetime, Marquis is 94-for-446 (.211) with five homers and 42 RBIs.

Marquis, whose career record is 81-70, is slotted third in the Rockies' rotation. As the starters make their second turn through the rotation, Marquis is assured of being the only member of the rotation who will work seven innings in each start and win them both.

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