06 May 2012
While things may not have gone perfectly the Marlins in their three game sweep of the Padres definitely played their best overall series since they swept the Cubs at home in mid April. In the three games against the Padres, a team that swept the season series versus the Marlins in 2011, the Marlins were actually able to string some hits together and score runs. The Marlins scored 19 total runs on 29 hits versus the Padres, compared to just 8 runs in their three wins in San Francisco, yet the team still left 21 men on base.
It was a series were Giancarlo Stanton and Omar Infante continued to stay hot (Giancarlo Stanton 3-10 with 2 home runs, 3 run, 4 RBI and Omar Infante 5 for 11 with 1 run and 4 RBI including the game winning RBI double in the 12th inning on Friday), but also got to see some signs of life from the bats of Jose Reyes, Hanley Ramirez and Gaby Sanchez as well. Right now only Infante, Stanton, Greg Dobbs, and Logan Morrison have batting averages over .250 for the Marlins, but if guys who usually hit for average like Hanley, Reyes, and Gaby can start to turn it on (how many times have I said that this year) then this team can start to climb their way back into the NL East race, especially after today's win put them back at .500 for the first time since the Washington series.
But not everything came up frpses for the Marlins as Josh Johnson continues to have his ups and downs as he is coming back from last years shoulder injury. On Friday, he went just 2 2/3 innings giving up 6 runs on 6 hits and raised his ERA to 6.61. And while the Marlins were able to fight their way back into the game, Heath Bell blew his 4th save of the series and as a result he will no longer be the teams closer until further notice. Steve Cishek, who may or may not be available to pitch on Monday, will take over as the team's closer until Ozzie Guillen feels comfortable with giving the responsibility back to Bell.
Luckily in the next two game the Marlins were able to get solid starting performances from both Mark Buehrle and Ricky Nolasco. After Friday's extra inning game which really drained the bullpen, and forced the Marlins to bring up Chris Hatcher and Sandy Rosario, the Marlins desperately needed Buehrle and Nolasco to go far into their starts and they did just that. On Saturday, Mark Buehrle ave up just one run on his way to his first complete game as a Marlin. Then on Sunday, Ricky Nolasco gave up just 2 runs in 7 innings on his way to his 4th win of the season and tied the Marlins franchise record for career wins.
Now the Marlins head to Houston forthe final three games of their nine game game road trip.
- Monday 8:05 at Houston: Carlos Zambrano (0-2) vs. Wandy Rodriguez (3-2)
- Tuesday 8:05 at Houston: Anibal Sanchez (0-2) vs Fernando Rodriguez (0-0)
- Wednesday 8:05 at Houston: Josh Johnson (0-3) vs. Lucas Harrell (2-2)
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