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Cubs-Rangers game rained out

The SportsXchange

CHICAGO -- Wednesday's interleague game between the Texas Rangers and the Chicago Cubs never had a chance.

After on-and-off downpours throughout the day and forecasts for more evening rain, officials opted to call the game late Wednesday afternoon.

No makeup date was announced and there are few options for rescheduling with no other meetings scheduled between the American and National League entries.

The teams are scheduled for a 1:20 p.m. game on Thursday but a day-night doubleheader to complete the series was not under consideration.

Thursday's forecast call for isolated thunderstorms and a high near 70 degrees.

On Friday, the Rangers are scheduled to open a three-game weekend home series with Seattle while the Cubs are in Milwaukee.

The unexpected off day -- the second rainout in six days -- at least offered the struggling Cubs a breather in what was originally a tough run of 19 straight games against teams that finished above .500 in 2012, including the reigning World Series champion San Francisco Giants and the Rangers, 93-69 last year.

They've lost three straight and have have had bullpen struggles with original closer Carlos Marmol and Kyuji Fujikawa, now on the 15-day disabled list.

But starting pitching has been solid with a collective 3.20 ERA through 13 games, the fourth lowest ERA in the National League. Through 13 games last year, Cubs starters had a 4.72 ERA.

The Rangers, 3-2 on their current road trip, had their second off day in three days. They beat the Cubs 4-2 in Tuesday's series opener as Derek Holland worked a sparkling seven shutout innings.

It was the seventh time this season that Texas has allowed two or fewer runs while the staff has compiled a collective 2.36 ERA over the last seven games.

Former Cubs pitcher Carlos Zambrano visited Wrigley Field on Wednesday, sparking social media speculation that the Cubs may be interested in resigning him. Zambrano was with the Chicago from 2001-11, played for the Marlins last year but remains unsigned so far in 2013.

Cubs manager Dale Sveum quickly shot down speculation about interest in Zambrano.

"Rumors are rumors," he said.

NOTES: After starting the season with two wins in three games in Pittsburgh, the Cubs have gone 2-8 over their last 10 games. Twelve of 13 games have been decided by three or fewer runs ... Starlin Castro has a current nine-game hitting streak, hitting .357 since the run began on April 6. He owns seven hitting streaks of 10 or more since the start of 2011 ... Alfonso Soriano's single to load the bases on Tuesday snapped an 0-for-24 drought with runners in scoring position. Nate Schierholtz followed with a two-run double as the Cubs went 2-for-4 on the night with runners in scoring position ... Tuesday's victory snapped the Rangers' two-game losing streak against the Cubs as they improved to 6-4 all time against Chicago, including a 3-1 mark at Wrigley Field ... The Rangers are now 38-17 in interleague play since 2013, tied for the Yankees for the best winning percentage (.691) ... Texas reliever Tanner Scheppers has not allowed a run in his seven appearances this season, covering 7.1 innings ... Both teams wore No. 42 uniforms on Tuesday as part of a salute to African-American pioneer Jackie Robinson. The Rangers are 4-1 when wearing No. 42 since 2008.
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