The Miami Marlins are set to take on the New York Mets in a three-game series this week before heading home for a quick four-game stop. The first matchup is an exciting one: the Marlins throw out their previously injured staff ace Josh Johnson to face Mets starter Johan Santana, who himself missed all of last season with an injury. Which of the two injury-plagued starters will get the edge in the first game of this series? We will find out tonight!Pitching Matchup
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The Marlins send out Josh Johnson to try again after getting rained out on Sunday in Washington. We spoke a lot about Johnson today, so there is not much more that needs to be said. It is important to note that Johnson has struggled early against lefties and that the Mets boast four lefties in their typical lineup in Ike Davis, Lucas Duda, Daniel Murphy, and Josh Thole. Aside from Davis, none of them are all that impressive, but it should be interesting to see how they manage to do versus Johnson tonight.
The Mets will send Santana out for his fourth start of the season, but in terms of innings, he has not had much work so far. He has started three games but exited his latest one after just one and a third innings and six runs allowed. He also only threw five innings in his two previous starts, so he may still be on a decently strict innings or pitch count early in the season. If the Fish can get to him early, they may be able to tax the bullpen for later games this series.
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The Marlins will send out a typical lineup following the rest day, and that includes likely having Omar Infante after he missed most of last week with a groin injury. Infante was extremely hot before leaving the lineup, but rust and a little regression could dampen that party for now.
- This marks Jose Reyes's first return to Citi Field and first time facing the Mets in an official major league game since leaving New York for south Florida as a free agent this offseason. He says he is unsure how he will be greeted, though the Mets are going to air a video commemorating his achievements before the game. Reyes is such a likable character that it is hard to imagine that they will greet him poorly, but you never know with some fans, New Yorkers or otherwise.
- Steve Schreiber of Amazin' Avenue sent me five questions regarding the Marlins to preview the series, and here are my responses. Good to work with the good folks at AA as always; all of them are class acts, and I don't say that just because my boss runs that site!
Bold Prediction: Marlins def. Mets 4-2