The Miami Marlins can set a franchise record for wins in one month with their next victory, but closer Heath Bell is having a May to forget. Bell was pulled in the ninth inning for the second straight game Saturday after he loaded the bases and retired only one batter. Fortunately for Bell, the Marlins improved to 18-7 this month with a 5-3 win after Randy Choate struck out Gregor Blanco with two runners on to end the game.
While Bell struggles, the Marlins are streaking thanks to solid starting pitching and a lineup led by Giancarlo Stanton, who has 10 home runs in May. The Marlins are 5-1 this season against the San Francisco Giants, who have picked up their offense with 38 hits in the first three games of the four-game series. Blanco has eight hits in the series, but the Giants are still struggling to hit with runners in scoring position. They were 1-for-11 on Saturday, when they left seven runners on base.
Giants Marlins Betting
When: 1:10 PM ET, Sunday, May 27, 2012
Where: Marlins Ballpark, Miami, Florida
TV: 1:10 p.m. ET, CS Bay Area (San Francisco), FS Florida (Miami)
PITCHING MATCHUP: Giants RH Matt Cain (4-2, 2.94 ERA) vs. Marlins RH Ricky Nolasco (5-2, 4.31)
Cain wasn’t sharp Tuesday against the Brewers, but earned the win after giving up four runs on 11 hits with eight strikeouts over seven innings. Cain, who has gone at least six innings in each of his starts, has a 62:10 strikeout-to-walk ratio. He held the Marlins to two runs over eight innings earlier this season.
Nolasco set the Marlins’ franchise record for wins with 69 against the Rockies on Wednesday when he gave up four runs over six innings. Nolasco, who is striking out a career-low 5.3 batters per nine innings, has a 1.56 ERA in 52 career innings against the Giants.
1. Marlins catcher John Buck is hitless in his last 23 at-bats with 11 strikeouts.
2. Giants infielder Emmanuel Burriss went 149 at-bats without an extra-base hit before he doubled in the third inning Saturday.
3. Following Sunday’s series finale, the Giants return home to play 13 of their next 16 games at AT&T Park.