Miami Marlins at Phillies: Series Preview

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The Phillies (4-9) return home to the hopefully friendly confines of Citizen’s Bank Park after a terrible road trip (1-6) to face the Miami Marlins (3-10), losers of 4 straight. Both teams are making their best run at last place in the NL East here in the early going.

Disappointed with the Marlins’ results thus far, slugger Giancarlo Stanton called the team out the other day, stating, “We’ve got a positive vibe, but [something] is just not there. The fire is not there, it seems like.

Afterwards, the comments created waves, and the Fish called a players-only meeting. Manager Mike Redmond commented to the Sun Sentinel, “If they don’t like something that’s going on, they work that out amongst themselves. I think sometimes meetings like that can be productive, and hopefully it is for us.” The Fish have gone 0-2 since the meeting, and owner Jeffrey Loria is apparently not too happy.

Miami brings a nice crop of hot hitters in Dee Gordon (.389/.404/.500, 8 R), Martin Prado (.277/.300/.362) and the always dangerous Stanton (.239/.364/.457, 2 HR, 11 RBI) with them to tackle the Phillies’ mediocre pitching staff.

The Fightin’ Phils combat that group with their own trio of hot hitters in Cody Asche (.361/.425/.500, 1 HR), Freddy Galvis (.317/.378/.390), and Odubel Herrera (.308/.372/.513).

More from That Balls Outta Here

PITCHING MATCHUPS:

Game 1: Jerome Williams (0-1) v. Dan Haren (1-0) – Williams (4.09 ERA) comes into this start hoping to perform better than his last time out (5 IP, 4 ER, 10 H, 2 HR, and 1 SO).  Meanwhile, Haren (2.08 ERA) adjusted to the zone and put together a nice start (7 IP, 2 ER, 3 H, 2 HR, and 5 SO) in his last appearance and looks to build on it. Atlanta Manager Fredi Gonzalez commented, “He put a little on, took a little off, hit every location. Guys were coming back shaking their heads. He hit his spots, and it’s hard to score some when you get three hits.”

Game 2: Cole Hamels (0-2) v. Jared Cosart (0-1) – the Phils staff ace, Hamels (5.00 ERA) looks to get his season on course after an uneven start (6.0 IP, 5 ER, 5 H, 2 HR, 7 SO, and 4 BB) and a typically slow beginning to his year. Cosart (4.76 ERA) is also looking to get his season untracked after a very pedestrian start (5.1 IP, 5 ER, 7 H, 1 HR, and 5 SO).

Game 3: Sean 0’Sullivan (0-1) v. David Phelps (0-0) – 0’Sullivan (4.91) wasn’t horrendous his last outing (5 IP, 4 ER, 5 H, 2 HR), but comes into Thursdays game hoping to limit the longball and therefore improve his overall line. Phelps (7.94 ERA) was decent, coming off the paternity list to deliver (no pun intended) his first start of the season (4.2 IP, 1 ER, 1 H, 2 SO, and 3 BB.) He’ll be looking to stretch out a little deeper and save the Fish bullpen some work.

KEYS TO THE SERIES:

Get the offense going against a poor pitching staff – As abysmal as the Phillies’ offense has been (29th in MLB in Runs Scored), they’ve spent their last 10 games going against the 6th and 7th best pitching staffs in all of baseball in the Nationals (2.97 ERA) and Mets (3.00 ERA) arms. Now they welcome Miami, ranked 30th in the league in ERA (5.10), which presents a fantastic opportunity for whatever offense the Phillies might have to get hot.

Keep the top of the lineup the same – Much of the Phillies offense over the past couple days has come from the aforementioned hottest hitters in Herrera, Galvis, and Asche. Now that those three have found their way to the top of the order, Asche in the 5-hole when Utley’s batting 3rd, they need to be left there to see if they can continue sparking the offense.

BROADCAST INFORMATION:

Game 1 (Tuesday)- 7:05 PM, TV: CSN, Radio: 1210FM, 94AM, 1480AM (Spanish Language)

Game 2 (Wednesday)- 7:05 PM, TV: CSN, Radio: 1210FM, 94AM, 1480AM (Spanish Language

Game 3 (Thursday)- 1:05 PM, TV: CSN, Radio: 1210FM, 94AM, 1480AM (Spanish Language


NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE (South Philly Forecast)

Tonight

Mostly clear, with a low around 48. Southwest wind 5 to 14 mph.

Wednesday

Showers likely, with thunderstorms also possible after 2pm. Partly sunny, with a high near 65. Breezy, with a southwest wind 10 to 15 mph increasing to 16 to 21 mph in the afternoon. Chance of precipitation is 70%. New rainfall amounts between a tenth and quarter of an inch, except higher amounts possible in thunderstorms.

Wednesday Night

A chance of showers, mainly before 8pm. Mostly cloudy, then gradually becoming mostly clear, with a low around 41. West wind 11 to 17 mph. Chance of precipitation is 30%. New precipitation amounts of less than a tenth of an inch possible.

Thursday

Mostly sunny, with a high near 55. West wind 13 to 17 mph.

Thursday Night

Partly cloudy, with a low around 38. West wind 6 to 14 mph.


INJURY UPDATE

MARLINSDateStatusDue BackInjuryNotes
Alvarez, Henderson (P)04/2015-day DLPossibly late AprilRight shoulder inflammation, elbow tightnessPlaced on 15-day DL on April 13.
Crow, Aaron (P)04/08Out for Season2016Recovering from April 2015 Tommy John surgeryUnderwent season-ending Tommy John surgery April 8.
Fernandez, Jose (P)04/1860-day DLPossibly JuneRecovering from May 2014 Tommy John surgeryThrew off mound March 1, 5; transferred to 60-day DL on April 18.
Kelly, Don (3B)04/1315-day DLTBDFractured right ring fingerPlaced on 15-day DL on April 13.
Mathis, Jeff (C)04/1315-day DLTBDFractured right ring fingerPlaced on 15-day DL on April 13.

PHILLIESDateStatusDue BackInjuryNotes
Billingsley, Chad (P)04/1015-day DLPossibly late AprilRecovering from June 2014 elbow surgerySent on Triple-A rehab assignment April 10.
Brown, Domonic (LF)04/1715-day DLPossibly AprilLeft Achilles tendinitisPlaced on 15-day DL retroactive to March 27; sent on Triple-A Advanced rehab assignment April 17.
Hollands, Mario (P)04/20Out for Season2016Recovering from April 2015 Tommy John surgeryUnderwent Tommy John surgery April 8.
Lee, Cliff (P)04/0560-day DLPossibly 2015Left common flexor tendon tearShut down from throwing, placed on 60-day DL on March 16.
Pettibone, Jonathan (P)04/0515-day DLTBDRecovering from June 2014 right elbow surgeryPlaced on 15-day DL on April 5 retroactive to March 27.