Miami Marlins Game Preview: Game 15 at Philadelphia Phillies


The last-place Miami Marlins (3-11) and the whatever-Philadelphia Phillies (5-9) throw hands on Wednesday night for game two of a three game series at Philly’s Citizens Bank Park. Jarred Cosart (0-1, 4.76 ERA) takes the mound for the Fish while the Phillies counter with Cole Hamels (0-2, 5.00), who is still a Phillie for some reason.

Tuesday night’s game one was another step in the wrong direction for the fast-sinking Marlins. The Phillies, and something called a Jerome Williams, got the best of the Marlins in a 7-3 series opening win. Giancarlo Stanton did homer off Williams for his third of the season, but Miami mustered just a field goal after Dan Haren and Mike Dunn combined to give up a touchdown.

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Amidst the rumors that Mike Redmond might be on his way out of Miami, tonight will be yet another chance for the Marlins to rebound, which is a narrative we’ve used depressingly often in the first two-plus weeks of the 2015 season. The Marlins have lost five straight, with their last W coming a week ago today in Atlanta, on Jackie Robinson Day. But it won’t get any easier tonight against a lefty like Hamels, who throughout his career has pitched well against the Marlins. The team hasn’t been hitting much, so they could be in for another long night at the plate against the Phillies’ ace. Especially with Christian Yelich ailing and possibly headed to the disabled list.

On the season, Hamels owns a 7.63 FIP, 9.0 K/9 and has surrendered a league-most seven home runs in just three starts. There are two schools of thought here to consider:

  1. He hasn’t looked like the same pitcher this year and tonight the Marlins should be able to belt a few longballs out of this hitters’ park. The offense will explode!
  2. This is the type of matchup that will balance Hamels’ season numbers and he will shut the Marlins out over seven innings, or something like that.

Cosart, once a Phillies prospect, is one of the big arms the Marlins have relied on in the absence of Jose Fernandez and now Henderson Alvarez. Cosart has been very “meh” in his first couple starts, but so has the rest of the rotation; The Marlins own the second-worst team ERA in baseball at 5.28. Cosart’s small sample size 4.76 ERA and 4.22 FIP don’t jump off the screen, and are actually quite close to the marks he posted with the Houston Astros before the deadline trade to the Marlins. He probably won’t pitch to a 2.39 ERA and 3.32 FIP like he did in his 10 starts with the Marlins last year, but there is certainly room for improvement this season. And it really can’t get much worse for the rotation anyway.

Maybe tonight with the help of Cosart the Marlins can get that team ERA down some, and finally get back in the win column. If not, the fire-Mike-Redmond chatter will continue to swirl until the team’s hand is forced and they can’t hold it off any longer.

Tonight’s lineups:

Miami Marlins

Dee Gordon, 2B
Martin Prado, 3B
Giancarlo Stanton, RF
Michael Morse, 1B
Marcell Ozuna, CF
J.T. Realmuto, C
Ichiro Suzuki, LF
Adeiny Hechavarria, SS
Jarred Cosart, P

A few changes to note, here. With Yelich out a third straight game with a lower back issue, it seems likely he will hit the DL soon, probably retroactive to Saturday or Sunday.

I like Realmuto hitting sixth here. Not that he’s a prototypical six hitter, but slotting Ichiro anything above seventh doesn’t make much sense to me. When he replaced Yelich last week and Redmond kept him hitting second, that was a head-scratcher that ended up doing nothing for the team. I’m also a big fan of Prado hitting second.

We’ll see what they can do tonight against Hamels.

Philadelphia Phillies

Odubel Herrera, CF
Ben Revere, LF
Chase Utley, 2B
Carlos Ruiz, C
Cody Asche, 3B
Ryan Howard, 1B
Grady Sizemore, RF
Freddy Galvis, SS
Cole Hamels. P

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