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Game 91: Miami Marlins @ Chicago Cubs, Game Thread and Ichthyomancy

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Current Series

Marlins lead the series 1-0

Tue 07/17 WP: Anibal Sanchez (5 - 6)
LP: Travis Wood (4 - 4)
9 - 5 win

Miami Marlins
@ Chicago Cubs

Wednesday, Jul 18, 2012, 8:05 PM EDT
Wrigley Field

Josh Johnson vs Jeff Samardzija

Partly cloudy. Winds blowing in from center field at 5-10 m.p.h. Game time temperature around 85.

Complete Coverage >

Thu 07/19 2:20 PM EDT

Amid swirling Miami Marlins trade rumors, the currently composed Marlins are actually doing pretty well. The Fish won with fireworks and many runs last night, but tonight's pitching matchup leans more towards a close, low-run scoring affair. Josh Johnson will go to the mound after a solid outing that was ruined by a case of hit-itis. Jeff Samardzija has been pretty good thus far this year, but his ERA hasn't shown it and his work lately has left something to be desired. The Marlins are hopeful that their offense can pounce on him once again.

Pitching Matchup

Proj Win% Proj ERA FIP ERA Marlins Cubs ERA FIP Proj ERA Proj Win%
.621 3.00 3.07 4.28 Johnson Samardzija 4.71 3.66 3.78 .521

Johnson struck out six batters and walked none in his last start, but he was plagued by 11 hits allowed and ended up being sunk by the Washington Nationals. But that parade of hits cannot be too discouraging, as not all hits were created equally and you have to expect Johnson to do better going forward, especially with his continually strong strikeout rates. It seems most of his early season problems with strikeouts have been overcome despite his lost velocity.

Samardjiza had an awesome first two months of the season, posting a 3.09 ERA and a 3.03 FIP, primarily on the back of a stellar 24.8 percent strikeout rate. Since then, however, his strikeout rate is down to 20.5 percent and his ERA is up to 7.47 and a 4.73 FIP. It's been a tale of two seasons, but with decent performances in July, maybe Samardzija has found his true rhythm in 2012.

Lineup

Order Player Proj wOBA vs. LHP
1 Jose Reyes .349
2 Emilio Bonifacio .307
3 Carlos Lee .322
4 Logan Morrison .349
5 Hanley Ramirez .346
6 Greg Dobbs .289
7 Omar Infante .313
8 Brett Hayes .258

The Greg Dobbs love is now officially hurting this team on both ends of the field. It is bad enough Ozzie Guillen and company think a hitter batting .298/.329/.383 (.303 wOBA) is good enough to be in a platoon. but to put Dobbs in right field when he is clearly uncomfortable and poor at the position is asking for trouble. The Marlins have Justin Ruggiano (.368/.440/.705, .473 wOBA) on the bench as the small half of the platoon, but even his glove over Dobbs's is enough to justify play. The team continues to manage its way back into a paper bag.

Bold Prediction: Marlins def. Cubs 3-1