The Miami Marlins will begin a crucial three-game series with the Chicago White Sox starting on Friday evening at Marlins Park. As teams enter the stretch-run of the season, every win counts for those that are competing for a playoff spot, and the Marlins are in the thick of the race for the second NL Wild Card. After the St. Louis Cardinals lost a controversial game to the Chicago Cubs on Thursday night, the Marlins gained a half game over the Cardinals for the second NL Wild Card, and that’s where their lead stands with just about a month and a half left in the regular season.
The Marlins have hit a bit of a rough patch, as they suffered two brutal losses at the hands of the San Francisco Giants earlier in the week, and they got swept by the Cubs last week. They’ll look to hit the restart button against a White Sox team that has had a season full of disappointments.
Chicago got off to a torrid start, but they have cooled down ever since, which is why then enter Friday’s contest with a 54-60 record, which is good for fourth in the AL Central. Chicago will send Carlos Rodon to the mound, and in his first full season in the majors, the southpaw has had his ups and downs, and for the most part, he’s not been having many ups.
|Team||Starter||ERA||FIP||2016 ZIPS Projected ERA|
Rodon is just 2-8 this year, and he’s struck out 105 batters while compiling a WHIP of 1.51. His fastball did reach 100 MPH on the gun in a game recently against the Baltimore Orioles, so that could mean that his stats will improve as the season starts to wind down. The Marlins will counter with recently acquired Andrew Cashner, who has started in two games with Miami since being traded from the San Diego Padres.
Cashner is 4-8 this season, and he’s fanned 74 batters, while posting a WHIP of 1.37. Cashner has seen his ERA balloon 20 points since joining the Marlins. The Marlins have scored only two runs in 25 innings, and they’ve been shut out five times since the All-Star break. The lineup will be getting some help, as Giancarlo Stanton will return to the lineup after missing Wednesday’s game due to a sore hip.
|CHICAGO WHITE SOX||MIAMI MARLINS|
|Adam Eaton - RF||Dee Gordon - 2B|
|Tyler Saladino - 2B||Martin Prado - 3B|
|Melky Cabrera - LF||Christian Yelich - LF|
|Jose Abreu - 1B||Giancarlo Stanton - RF|
|Todd Frazier - 3B||Marcell Ozuna - CF|
|J.B. Shuck - CF||J.T. Realmuto - C|
|Tim Anderson - SS||Miguel Rojas - 1B|
|Omar Narvaez - C||Adeiny Hechavarria - SS|
|Carlos Rodon - LHP||Andrew Cashner - RHP|
Prediction: Marlins defeat White Sox, 3-1