National League Preview from The Sports Network|
Monday, May 7th
(All times Eastern)
Miami Marlins (14-14) at Houston Astros (13-15), 8:05 p.m.
Probable Starting Pitchers: Miami - Carlos Zambrano (0-2, 2.53)
Houston - Wandy Rodriguez (3-2, 1.64)
(Sports Network) - It's been so far, so good for the Miami Marlins on their
nine-game road trip and they will shoot for a seventh straight win tonight
against the Houston Astros in the opener of a three-game series at Minute Maid
Miami has recorded three-game sweeps of both San Francisco and San Diego to
start its trek and moved back to the .500 mark with Sunday's 6-3 victory over
the Padres from Petco Park. Marlins starter Ricky Nolasco pushed his 2012
record to 4-0 with seven strong innings, allowing two runs and five hits with
Nolasco posted his 68th career win and tied Dontrelle Willis for the most in
"It means a lot," Nolasco said. "I'm just grateful for the opportunity the
team has given me to be here for this long. It means a lot knowing that I'm
here helping this team and this organization win as many games as possible."
Randy Choate, Ryan Webb and Edward Mujica went the final two innings with
Mujica recording his second save in the process. Hanley Ramirez, Logan
Morrison, Giancarlo Stanton and Gaby Sanchez all drove in a run, while
Jose Reyes and Emilio Bonifacio each had two hits and a run scored.
The Marlins have scored at least three runs in eight of their last nine games,
and hope Carlos Zambrano can earn his first win with his new ballclub tonight.
Zambrano is 0-2 with a 2.53 earned run average in five starts and had his best
outing of the season in last Wednesday's 3-2 win at San Francisco. Zambrano
fired seven scoreless innings for the no-decision and struck out five.
Zambrano, a righty, has permitted one run or less on three occasions this
season and faced the Astros in a 5-4 loss on April 14. The former Cubs hurler
gave up one run in six innings, but walked a season-high six batters. Since he
played in the NL Central for so long, Zambrano is 16-8 with a 2.69 ERA in 35
career games (33 starts) against Houston.
Despite Sunday's 8-1 loss to the St. Louis Cardinals in the finale of a three-
game set, the Astros enter tonight's game on somewhat of a roll.
Houston was aiming for its second straight sweep after taking all three
meetings with the New York Mets, but came up short to the Cardinals. J.A. Happ
got the nod for the 'Stros and was banged around for six runs -- five earned
-- and six hits, including two homers, in five innings to suffer the loss. He
walked four and fanned six batters.
"A couple of the walks definitely hurt, and they had some good swings," Happ
said. "[Tyler] Greene put a good swing on that ball. It was kind of up and
away, but it was probably into his swing path, too. It kind of wasn't a good
pitch, and I got beat on a couple of big hits."
Jose Altuve and Carlos Lee both had two hits in defeat. Lee scored his team's
only run on a wild pitch in the fourth inning.
Wandy Rodriguez will take the mound for Houston tonight and he is aiming to
extend his personal three-game winning streak. Rodriguez made it three wins in
a row with last Wednesday's 8-1 win over the Mets, as he delivered seven
innings of one-run ball and struck out five. He has allowed a total of four
earned runs over his previous four starts and is 3-2 with a sizzling 1.64 ERA
in six outings.
Rodriguez, who started the season 0-2 in three starts, is 3-3 with a 3.18 ERA
in 10 career appearances, eight of which have been starts, against the
Houston is 5-1 on a nine-game homestand and has scored four runs or more in
six of the past seven games. It dropped two of three games in Miami from April
13-15, including two contests in 11 innings. The Marlins are 8-2 in the last
10 matchups between the teams.
05/07 11:06:53 ET