Chicago’s starters have the highest ERA in the majors at 6.24, but Garza (0-3, 4.11 ERA) will follow up an effective outing by Carlos Zambrano(notes), who went six innings in a 4-2 win over the Diamondbacks (11-14) on Friday.
“This was real good coming off losing four in a row and everything else,” manager Mike Quade said. “A real good effort.”
Soriano, who also homered in his previous game Tuesday against Colorado, is batting .484 with nine homers and 18 RBIs in his last 10 games against the Diamondbacks.
Garza hopes that success continues, but he’d prefer some improved defense after a sloppy game played a part in his latest loss.
He gave up five runs - four unearned - in six innings of a 5-3 loss to Colorado on Monday. Shortstop Starlin Castro(notes) committed three errors in the second, but Garza’s errant throw in the fifth allowed the Rockies to score the go-ahead run.
“It is what it is,” he told the Cubs’ official website. “I accomplished what I wanted to do except throw that ball away in the fifth. I kept the ball in the yard, kept the ball on the ground and pitched effectively - not enough to win, but it’s going to come.”
The right-hander pitched six scoreless innings April 20 against San Diego, but the Cubs squandered a ninth-inning lead before winning 2-1 in 11 innings. In the two starts before that, he didn’t get any run support.
Garza, who has 16 strikeouts in his last two games, has never faced the Diamondbacks.
Arizona pounded Chicago 11-2 in Thursday’s series opener, but went 0 for 7 with runners in scoring position Friday as it lost for the sixth time in nine games.
Kennedy threw a three-hitter in a 4-0 victory over Philadelphia on Monday for his first career complete game. He struck out 10 and walked none, going the distance after lasting a combined 8 1-3 innings in his previous two starts.
“To shut our lineup down like that, he was definitely doing something right,” Philadelphia’s Cliff Lee(notes) said. “I wouldn’t expect him to go nine innings without giving up a run. That’s impressive.”
The right-hander split two starts against the Cubs last year, but was roughed up for seven runs in a 9-4 home loss July 5.