13 April 2012
It is amazing how seemingly one play in one random inning can turn the tern the tides in an entire series. In game one of the series on Monday the Marlins beat down the Phillies on their home opener, and the 6-2 score does not even show how badly the Marlins beat them. After losing in the 9th inning the day before the Marlins came to Philadelphia Monday and knocked Cole Hamels around for four runs in 5 1/3 innings. The Marlins ended up hitting three home runs that day, two by Omar Infante, and cruised to the easy win even with Logan Morrison and Giancarlo Stanton taking the day off.
Then after an off day on Tuesday that saw Ozzie Guillen fly back to Miami to apologies to everyone about his comments about Fidel Castro, the Guillenless Marlins (Ozzie was suspended for the next 5 games) took to the field on Wednesday to face Roy Halladay. In the past several matchups between the Marlins and the Phillies where on the hill it had been Roy Halladay versus Josh Johnson runs had been at a premium with several of those games ending at just 1-0. So things look good for the Marlins going into the third inning as they had a 1-0 lead and had three hits already off the usually unhittable Roy Halladay. However things changed in the third when former Marlins Juan Pierre singled with one out in the inning. Then on a steal attempt he was called safe by the umpire although most of the Marlins players believed, and the look on replay, that Jose Reyes had made the tag on Pierre before he reached the bag. After that Placido Polanco singled to score Pierre and the wheels fell off for Josh Johnson and the Marlins. Josh Johnson would give up six hits and five runs that inning. The Phillies would go on to win 7-1 and the Marlins only had one hit in the game after the third inning.The next day the Marlins were not much better as they lost the rubber match 3-1.
The Marlins are now just 2-5, and have scored a total of three runs in Josh Johnson and Mark Buehrle's combined four starts. However neither of those pitchers have been as good as advertised in their four starts either. Buehurle does have the better numbers with a 3.65 ERA and 7 strikeouts in 12 1/3 innings, but anyone who has watched the games this year would tell you that he have not been at the top of his game, as evident by the 15 hits he has given up. Meanwhile Josh Johnson really has looked like a guy struggling to find his rhythm coming back after missing almost an entire season. In 2012 JJ is 0-2 with an 8.38 ERA giving up 21 hits, nine runs, three walks, while only striking out five in 9 2/3 innings. It is no where near time to panic, if the Marlins offense had been able to produce a little more run support in those four games the Fish could have a 2-2 record instead of 0-4. Also the Marlins have six home games coming up against the Astros and Cubs, and you would like to think that the worse the Marlins will do in those six games is go 4-2.
With all that negativity their are still two players who continue to produce on the offensive side of the ball in Emilio Bonifacio and Omar Infante. Omar Infante is having the polar opposite start in 2012 to what he had in 2011. This year in the first seven games, Infante is hitting .360 with four RBI, seven runs, three double, a triple, and is the Marlins leader in home runs with three. Boniffacio seems to be picking up where he left off last year as he has a six game hitting streak and is batting .370 with 1 RBI, 4 runs, and 4 stolen bases. While most would prefer it if it were Gaby Sanchez and Hanley Ramirez hitting it this well to start the year (they are a combined 7 for 49 in 2012) right now the Marlins will take any offense they can get.
Next Series versus Houston Astros
- Friday: Ricky Nolasco vs. Lucas Harrell 7:10pm at Marlins Park
- Saturday: Carlos Zambrano vs. Bud Norris 7:10pm at Marlins Park
- Sunday: Anibal Sanchez vs. J.A. Happ 1:10pm at Miami Park
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