D’backs vs. Marlins Series Preview


Anything less than a fish massacre would be a disappointment.

The D’backs travel to Miami to face the listless Marlins, a team tied for the worst record in the majors at 11-30 and are on a five-game losing streak.

After a fire sale in the offseason, only Giancarlo Stanton remained a legitimate above-average regular. And he’s hurt.

The Marlins are dead last in the majors in runs, batting average, on-base percentage and slugging percentage. In their last game, against the Reds on May 16, the Marlins trotted out a lineup featuring Juan Pierre in the leadoff spot, Adeiny Hechavarria in the two hole, Derek Dietrich, and his six career games in the majors, in the third spot and Marcell Ozuna, and his 15 games in the majors, hitting clean up. It’s a very bad, no good, dirty, rotten lineup.

On the flip side, the Snakes are playing very well right now. Coming off a series win against the talented Braves, and winning seven of their last 10, the D’backs should get off to a good start on their six game road trip through Miami and Denver.

Game 1 (Friday): Trevor Cahill (2-4, 2.70 ERA) vs. Kevin Slowey (1-3, 2.55 ERA)

Slowey has been a bright spot for the Marlins this season. He was brilliant in April, compiling a 2.15 ERA. He kept opponents off the base paths, only walking six in 37.2 innings of work, and limited the home runs, only three in 138 at bats. In his first start in May, he finally earned his first win of the season, throwing seven shut out inning against the Phillies. However, in his next outing, his last, Slowey was pounded. On May 11 against the Dodgers, Slowey gave up five runs and 11 hits in only 4.2 innings. Will he bounce back or will the regression continue?

Despite having issues with control in his last outing, walking four in five innings, Cahill limited the damage to one run, yet still received the loss against the Phils on May 11. Cahill is quietly chugging along with his 2.70 ERA. He may be getting a tad lucky with home runs but not much. He’s becoming the pitcher the D’backs were expecting when they traded for him before last season.

Game 2 (Saturday): Brandon McCarthy (0-3, 5.63) vs. Tom Koehler (0-1, 3.31)

Koehler will be making his second start for the Marlins this season. He’s pitched in seven games this season, but only in his last appearance, on May 12 against the Dodgers, did he start. He went five innings, gave up two runs on seven hits, walked one and struck out one. On the season, he has 10 strike outs and seven walks in 16.1 innings of work. McCarthy was brilliant, finally, in his last outing, shutting out the Phillies on May 12 for eight innings. He struck out five, walked none and only allowed seven hits. Unfortunately, the bullpen blew the lead in the ninth and McCarthy received a no decision. Still, in his last three games, McCarthy has a 3.10 ERA and has struck out 14 and only walked two in 20.1 innings.

 Game 3 (Sunday): Wade Miley (3-2, 3.75) vs. Ricky Nolasco (2-5, 4.39)

In his last start, Nolasco was touched up for six runs in five innings against the Reds on May 14. Nolasco has been up and down all season, four quality starts but also three outings where gave up four runs or more. Despite his home field being a pitcher’s haven, Nolasco has actually been his worst at home. He owns a 5.25 ERA in four games, going 1-2 in the process.

Miley may be showing some flaws after continuing his dominant 2012 into April 2013. But now, he’s had three bad outings in his last four, struggling with command in those bad outings. He walked 12 in 14.1 innings. In his last start, he gave up six earned in five innings and received the loss on May 13 against the Braves.

 The D’backs and Marlins are squaring off for the first time in 2013. The D’backs came out on top in 2012, going 5-3 against the fish, outscoring them 38-32.