8/17 Extra bases

A win Wednesday would give the Cubs a fifth consecutive series victory for the first time since winning nine series in a row July 28-Aug. 27, 2008. Despite losing Tuesday, the Cubs are 17-14 since the All-Star break. Since July 31, they are 12-4, the third best record in baseball behind the Brewers and Phillies.

* Casey Coleman will make his 10th start for the Cubs on Wednesday. Here’s the lineup:

SS Castro

2B Barney

3B Ramirez

1B Pena

C Soto

CF Byrd

LF Soriano

RF Colvin

P Coleman

* Wednesday’s game wraps up a stretch of 23 consecutive days at the ballpark for the Cubs. The stretch included 22 games, one postponement on Aug. 8 and one makeup game Aug. 11. After a much needed off day Thursday, the Cubs play host to the Cardinals and Braves at Wrigley Field. After Wednesday’s game, the Cubs will have 19 home games and 19 road games remaining. Randy Wells (4-4, 5.90 ERA) opens the homestand Friday against the Cardinals.

* The Cubs lost to the Astros on Tuesday night on a walkoff grand slam served up by Carlos Marmol. The last time that happened was Aug. 27, 2006, in St. Louis. The Cubs and Cardinals were tied at 6 in the ninth when Gary Bennett homered off Bob Howry to give St. Louis a 10-6 win. The last time the Cubs lost a game on a walkoff grand slam when they were winning was Aug. 26, 1966, in Houston. Chicago led 4-3 in the bottom of the ninth when Cubs pitcher Cal Koonce gave up a walkoff slam to Bob Aspromonte. The Astros won, 7-4.

* Cubs starters have 18 quality starts in their last 31 games since the All-Star break, and a 2.22 ERA and 12-6 record in those 18 games. In the 13 non-quality starts, they have an 8.32 ERA.

– Carrie Muskat

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