Miami Marlins at Philadelphia Phillies series primer
Both the Miami Marlins (5-5) and Philadelphia Phillies (3-6) meet at Citizens Bank Park this weekend looking to get back on track.
The National League East-leading Washington Nationals (7-2) swept the Marlins, while the Milwaukee Brewers took all three games against the Phillies.
Miami will send its top two pitchers to the mound — reigning co-NL Player of the Week Jose Fernandez and right-hander Nathan Eovaldi. The club will miss Philadelphia lefties Cole Hamels, who is on the disabled list, and Cliff Lee.
"We’ve got to head forward, forget about it," righty Tom Koehler said of the series sweep to the Nationals. "Don’t forget about the games — also don’t dwell on it — learn from it. If we don’t learn from these three games then that’s when they’re really going to hurt us."
Here’s a look at the upcoming Marlins-Phillies series…
SCHEDULE AND PROBABLE PITCHERS
OF Christian Yelich (Marlins): Since snapping a 0 for 13 skid on April 3, Yelich has gone 8 for 17 (.470) with two doubles, a triple and three RBI. He reached base five times on Wednesday and has been successful on his 12 stolen base attempts dating back to last season.
2B Chase Utley (Phillies): Of players with at least 25 at-bats, Utley ranks second in the majors with a .464 average, second in on-base percentage (.531) and first in slugging percentage (.786). He already has four multi-hit games.
3B Casey McGehee (Marlins): After setting a club newcomer record with 10 RBI through the first six games, McGehee has failed to drive in a run over the past five. He went 1 for 12 with three strikeouts against the Nationals, and has just one hit over his last 16 at-bats.
1B Ryan Howard (Phillies): Hitless over his last nine at-bats, Howard has the lowest average (.200) among Philadelphia starters. He has just one homer and three RBI through nine games.
7: The number of days since Marlins closer Steve Cishek last pitched, and the number of seasons Phillies starter A.J. Burnett played with the Marlins to begin his MLB career.
.293: Even after a 0 for 5 showing on Thursday, Miami is 29 for 99 with runners in scoring position this year.
105: All-time losses for the Marlins in Philadelphia. Their win in their final game of 2013 (Sept. 18) at Citizens Bank Park snapped a five-game streak.
36: Ryan Howard has 36 career home runs and 104 RBI in 131 games against the Marlins, fourth among his opponents.
"Two days in a row. We’ve got to make some pitches, and we’re trying to find out about some guys in certain situations. And like I said when their offense gets rolling it seems to be tough to slow them down." — Manager Mike Redmond about giving up grand slams in consecutive games to the Nationals
"I know that Frank (Menechino)’s been keying in on getting line drives instead of the ball in the air. As a team collectively we’ve been working in the cages getting line drives and doing what we can do that at-bat rather than hit the big home run." — Jarrod Saltalamacchia on the club’s hitting approach this season
"It goes both ways. They were hitting in the same shadows we were." — Casey McGehee when asked whether shadows during Thursday’s game affected hitters
April 14-16 — Nationals at Marlins