Series: Game 2 of 3

Florida leads 2-0 (as of 7/2)

Game 1: Monday, July 1
Chicago 1Final
Florida 11
Game 2: Tuesday, July 2
Chicago 7Final
Florida 9
Game 3: Wednesday, July 3
Chicago 6Final
Florida 2

Cubs 7

(33-48, 17-25 away)

Marlins 9

(43-40, 24-18 home)

    7:05 PM ET, July 2, 2002

    Sun Life Stadium, Miami, Florida 

    123456789 R H E
    CHC 000230002 7 - -
    FLA 21111030 - 9 - -

    W: B. Neal (2-0)

    L: J. Lieber (6-5)

    Floyd powers Marlins past Sosa's Cubs

    MIAMI (AP) -- The way Cliff Floyd is playing, his Florida Marlins teammates don't want to see him traded.

    Sammy Sosa

    Cliff Floyd

    Floyd had three hits, including a go-ahead home run in the fifth inning, and the Florida Marlins beat the slumping Chicago Cubs 9-7 Tuesday night.

    Sammy Sosa hit his 28th homer of the season for the Cubs, who have lost seven of eight.

    Floyd had a pair of singles to go along with his solo shot off Jon Lieber that broke a tie. He finished 3-for-3 with three RBI.

    ''I was just trying to do something to get the team back in the lead,'' Floyd said. ''It was a 1-0 pitch that he left inside. I hit that pitch good.

    ''Everybody is jelling together. We need to be patient and play our game. We can put five or six runs on the board any time.''

    Floyd, who is making $6.5 million in the last year of his contract, has been the subject of trade rumors most of the season. He will likely demand too high a salary for the Marlins.

    But his numbers have been impressive lately, a fact not lost on Floyd's teammates. He has hit in seven of his last eight games, batting .343 with four home runs and 10 RBI during that span.

    ''There's been a lot of trade talk with him, and I hope we don't lose him,'' Marlins pitcher Brad Penny said. ''He's a big part of this team.''

    Penny, making his first start since May 18, was shaky after being activated off the disabled list earlier in the day. Staked to leads of 4-0 and 5-2, Penny gave up a pair of runs in the fourth and three more in the fifth.

    Penny, who missed the last seven weeks with inflammation to his right biceps muscle, lasted 4 1-3 innings, allowing five runs on eight hits, including home runs to Fred McGriff and Sosa.

    ''Our team played great, and I struggled late,'' Penny said. ''I left some pitches up, but they have a great lineup. I feel relieved. It's a thousand pounds off my shoulders. I've been trying to get my arm healthy all year.''

    Tom Gordon made his first appearance for the Cubs since Sept. 5., striking out two in a scoreless eighth. His second strikeout -- against Luis Castillo -- was the 1,500th of his career.

    Gordon missed most of the first half of the season with a torn a muscle in his right shoulder. His 2001 season was cut short by tendinitis in his elbow.

    The Marlins added three runs in the seventh off reliever Juan Cruz to open a 9-5 lead.

    Blaine Neal (2-0) pitched 1 2-3 innings in relief for the win.

    Lieber (6-5) pitched five innings, giving up six runs and 10 hits. It was Lieber's first loss since May 29.

    ''I didn't do the job tonight,'' Lieber said. ''I wasn't making the right pitches, and I didn't have the right location. We battled back, but I didn't come through.''

    The Marlins scored a pair of runs in the first inning. Castillo extended his hitting streak to eight games by leading off with a single and went to third on Andy Fox's single.

    Mike Lowell hit a grounder to short, but Alex Gonzalez, whose error on Monday led to seven runs in the fifth inning, bobbled it and was late with his throw to second, giving him two errors in as many games. Castillo scored on Lowell's fielder's choice, and Fox scored from second on Cliff Floyd's single to center.

    Eric Owens led off the second with a single and scored two outs later on Penny's double to left-center for a 3-0 lead.

    Lowell's 14th homer of the season gave Florida a 4-0 lead in the third.

    The Cubs scored twice in the fourth. Fred McGriff led off with a solo homer, his 15th, and Bill Mueller drove in Todd Hundley with a single to make it 4-2.

    Castillo's sacrifice fly scored Kevin Millar to put the Marlins up 5-2 inthe fourth.

    Sosa's two-run homer in the fifth chopped Florida's lead to 5-4. The Cubs tied the game in the same inning on Gonzalez's two-out double, scoring McGriff.

    Floyd's solo shot in the fifth put the Marlins ahead 6-5. The Marlins scored three more runs in the seventh.

    The Cubs scored two runs off Vladimir Nunez in the ninth but Mueller grounded out with runners on first and second to end it. Nunez, who has struggled lately as the closer, made things interesting, giving up three walks and a single.

    ''Walks. I hate walks,'' Florida manager Jeff Torborg said. ''That's what they put on the manager's tombstone.''

    Game notes

    Chicago's Moises Alou left the game in the sixth with a cramp in his right calf and is listed day-to-day. ... McGriff's homer ended a 2-for-19 slide. ... Castillo, who had a 35-game hitting streak earlier this year, has hit safely in 52 of his last 56 games and in 64 of 77 overall. ... Sosa's homer was the 478th of his career. ... Floyd has four home runs in his last eight games and 11 RBI during that span.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press