National League Preview from The Sports Network
Friday, June 1st (All times eastern)
Miami Marlins (29-22) at Philadelphia Phillies (27-25), 7:05 p.m.
Probable Starting Pitchers: Miami - Mark Buehrle (5-4, 3.26) Philadelphia - Kyle Kendrick (1-4, 4.10)
(Sports Network) - After shredding the majors with a 21-8 record in May, the Miami Marlins will begin the month of June with three straight games on the road against the NL East-rival Philadelphia Phillies at Citizens Bank Park.
The Marlins posted the most wins in any month in franchise history, besting the 19-7 mark back in August of 1997 -- the year of their first World Series title.
Giancarlo Stanton has been a big part of Miami's resurgence and clubbed a team- record 12 home runs in May. He finished the month with a .343 batting average, 37 hits, including 10 doubles, 30 RBI and 23 runs scored.
"I don't follow who's hot or who's not," Marlins manager Ozzie Guillen said. "I doubt many have put up better numbers than him this month. Maybe somebody out there. I don't know which one. Whoever had better numbers this month better than [Stanton], he had a very good month."
Stanton homered and finished with two RBI in Wednesday's 5-3 win over the Washington Nationals to complete a three-game sweep. Hanley Ramirez had three hits and scored a run for the Marlins, who pulled within one-half game of Washington for the top spot in the National League East. Jose Reyes had two hits and is riding an 11-game hitting streak.
"Things are finally coming together as they should," Stanton said. "Long overdue. It seems these games we can finally show how good we are."
Josh Johnson tossed six decent innings and allowed three runs and seven hits for the win. Edward Mujica pitched two scoreless innings of relief and Heath Bell nailed down his 10th save of the season in the ninth.
Miami went 7-3 on its 10-game homestand and will pin pitching duties on Mark Buehrle this evening in south Philly. Buehrle has won three straight starts and is 4-0 in his previous five trips to the mound, He tossed 7 1/3 innings of two- run ball the last time out in a 5-3 victory over San Francisco on Saturday, improving to 5-4 with a 3.26 ERA over 10 starts.
The first-year Marlin is 2-3 in five road assignments this season and lost at Philadelphia back on April 12 in a 3-1 setback. Buehrle, a lefty, surrendered all three runs over 6 1/3 frames and the former White Sox ace fell to 3-1 in four career starts against the Phillies.
Philadelphia will kick off the month of June with a tough seven-game homestand versus Miami and Los Angeles, and has won six of its last eight games.
The Phillies took two of three from the New York Mets this week and won the series with Wednesday's 10-6 victory thanks to Carlos Ruiz's pinch-hit two-run homer in the top of the eighth inning. Jimmy Rollins then highlighted a six- run ninth inning with a three-run blast and Ty Wigginton also went deep for the Phillies, who are last in the NL East at three games off the pace.
Ruiz has been resting a sore hamstring and should be back behind the plate tonight. He leads the Phillies with a .371 average and 31 RBI. Ruiz's eight homers are second to Hunter Pence's 11.
"[Ruiz has] been a great catcher ever since I've been involved with him. He's starting to prove it even more with the bat," Phils pitcher Cliff Lee said.
Lee remained 0-2 after eight starts despite an earned run average that reached 3.00 only after he gave up three runs on seven hits and two walks to the Mets. He struck out seven batters in the no-decision. Antonio Bastardo picked up the win with a scoreless seventh inning.
Philadelphia went 5-2 on its seven-game road trip and hopes Kyle Kendrick will put forth a carbon copy of his last outing when he takes the mound Friday. Kendrick registered the first shutout of his career in Saturday's 4-0 win at St. Louis and scattered seven hits with four strikeouts and no walks. The effort lifted his 2012 mark to 1-4 in 11 games (6 starts) and lowered his earned run average to 4.10.
Kendrick is 0-3 in four games, two of which have been starts, at home this season and owns a strong 7-2 record through 16 career games (11 starts) against the rival Marlins. His earned run average in that time is 4.39, spanning 65 2/3 innings pitched.
The Phillies took two of three matchups with Miami earlier this season from April 9-12 and have won five of the past eight meetings between the clubs.
06/01 10:52:40 ET