CHICAGO -- John Buck has dropped down exactly one sacrifice bunt over the past 4 1/2 seasons. Bunting is not his thing. But when the first two Marlins hitters in the ninth reached on walks delivered by Cubs closer Carlos Marmol on Thursday, manager Jack McKeon ordered Buck to bunt.
Buck never put wood on any Marmol pitch, but it didn't matter, since none of them found the strike zone. Buck ended up walking, and the Marlins roared back from a 2-0 deficit in the ninth to win 6-3.
Breaking into a smile afterward, Buck described his at bat, one that preceded pinch-hitter Greg Dobbs' bases-clearing double.
"(Jack) asked me if I can bunt," Buck said. "I said, 'I'm a catcher. Of course I can bunt. When I went up there, (Marmol) was pretty erratic, so I wanted to make sure it was a ball over the plate. The first one was a slider that was nowhere near, the second one was nowhere near. Then I was kind of looking in (to the dugout) to see if Jack wanted me to take. And he said, no, put it down. That's when Marmol almost hit me in the crotch. And then it was 3-0 and I was taking."
Marmol walked the bases loaded on only 13 pitches.
Said Mike Cameron, who was the second of the three straight Marlins to walk to start the ninth - and one of six Marlins to walk in the six-run inning: "Marmol wasn't throwing strikes at all. That's Marmol for you. He can dot you with three or he can throw that thing everywhere."
It was yet another improbable win for the Marlins at Wrigley Field, where they've had many over the years. They're now 39-39 at Wrigley, not counting the '03 NLCS when they won three of the four games here.