After a gem by Trevor Richards in a 1-0 loss to the Atlanta Braves on Saturday night, the Marlins send Pablo Lopez to the mound in the series finale.
Can Marlins pitcher Pablo Lopez get to .500 as a starter this season? Will he be able to pitch a gem, as Trevor Richards did on Saturday with different results? Can the Marlins bats find a way to score runs in the series against the Braves as they have been dormant so far?
Lopez brings his “home game” to Marlins Park this afternoon. He has been a much better pitcher at home than on the road. He has a 2-1 record with a 1.84 ERA in five starts. The righty has only allowed one run in 12 innings in his last two starts. His curveball has been his “go to” pitch. Opponents are hitting just .139 against it.
Lopez has struck out 62 batters this season.
The Marlins must find the power that they exhibited in two road series wins this past week. Since the returned home, Miami’s lineup has been dormant. Richards looked every bit the part of dominant pitchers on the mound but was stymied because his teammates could not bring runs home at the plate, losing 1-0.
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It wasn’t a for a lack of trying for Richards, who continues to show he can be one of the best pitchers in baseball with a changeup that leaves opposing hitters baffled, as Marlin Maniac’s Kevin Kraczkowski explained.
"“Trevor Richards (3-6, 3.31) put 60-of-95 pitches in the strike zone, and carried a no-hitter into the sixth inning. He posted a GameScore of 74, his best mark of the season so far,” he wrote.“This, after he posted marks of 72 in each of his last two starts. Over these past three games, Richards has pitched 19 innings while allowing five hits and six walks. He’s also whiffed 18 over that span.”"
The Braves will counter with Max Fried who is 7-3 this season with a 3.68 ERA and 59 strikeouts. His record indicates he has pitched well this season, but his last two outings have proven a bit tougher. Fried’s curveball has been an issue as he gave up nine hits in those starts. The left-hander has also compiled a 5.18 ERA in the past eight starts on the mound.
In other news: The Marlins may have lost 7-1 on Friday night to the Braves, but it did not mean there wasn’t a celebration in the clubhouse.
Second baseman Starling Castro got two hits to get past 1.500 hits for his career. He had a second-inning double and followed that up with an RBI single in the ninth.
"Per Joe Frisaro of MLB.com, “Entering Saturday, Castro’s 1,501 hits are the sixth most in the Majors since he broke in as a 20-year-old rookie in 2010.”"