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Padres 8, Marlins 3: Marlins Can’t Overcome Rough Start From Chen

Marlins drop series to the Padres.

Miami Marlins v San Diego Padres Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images

Marlins starting pitcher Wei-Yin Chen has had his fair share of struggles on the road, albeit in a small sample size. Thursday night was no different. The Padres chased Chen off the mound after only 1 23 innings in the shortest start of his career, and the Fish couldn’t convert on a late scoring opportunity in the 8-3 loss.

With one out in the first inning, Christian Villanueva hit a two-run home run to get the Padres on the board first.

In the following inning, with runners at the corners and two out, Chen helped his own cause. He hit a grounder through the middle—who needs the DH, anyway—to score Brian Anderson and JT Riddle.

Fish Stripes original GIF

This would be the closest the Marlins would get to a victory.

The Padres came back with another punch in the bottom on the second. With two out, Chen walked two straight batters to load the bases. Eric Hosmer, who was 6-for-11 in this series coming into tonight, hit a single into center to score two runs and give San Diego the 4-2 lead. This was enough for Don Mattingly to pull Chen in favor of Odrisamer Despaigne. The Padres wouldn’t give up the lead the rest of the night.

Despaigne went 4 13 innings and allowed three runs, two of which were earned. All of the runs came in the 5th inning, where the Marlins’ defense struggled yet again, and yes, Starlin Castro had something to do with it (although it wasn’t all his fault).

Despite collecting 10 hits, the Marlins’ offense was mostly dormant—besides a Derek Dietrich solo home run in the 8th—in terms of scoring chances until the 9th. With JT Riddle and Yadiel Rivera singles, and a Dietrich walk, the Marlins found themselves with the bases loaded and JT Realmuto up to bat with two out. Realmuto is hitting .304 with runners in scoring position this year. Unfortunately, he couldn’t summon a clutch moment, and struck out on three pitches, ending the game.

5/31/18 win probability chart
Courtesy of FanGraphs

King Fish: Derek Dietrich (0.07 WPA)

Flounder: Wei-Yin Chen (-0.37 WPA)

Turning Point: Eric Hosmer’s two-run single in the 2nd inning to put the Padres up 4-2. Once the Padres got the lead, the Marlins didn’t come close to catching up the rest of the night.

Attendance: 17,373

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Probable Starters

Name Team IP ERA FIP K/9 fWAR
Name Team IP ERA FIP K/9 fWAR
Jordan Lyles Padres 42.1 3.83 4.51 8.50 0.0
Wei-Yin Chen Marlins 29.1 5.22 6.39 6.14 -0.4

Today's Lineups

Derek Dietrich - LF Jose Pirela - 2B
J.T. Realmuto - C Eric Hosmer - 1B
Justin Bour - 1B Christian Villanueva - 3B
Starlin Castro - 2B Hunter Renfroe - LF
Brian Anderson - RF Franmil Reyes - RF
Miguel Rojas - 3B Freddy Galvis - SS
JT Riddle - SS A.J. Ellis - C
Lewis Brinson - CF Manuel Margot - CF
Wei-Yin Chen - LHP Jordan Lyles - RHP

Another day, another game without José Ureña picking up a win. Josè threw a quality start, but another dissapointing outing from Brad Ziegler meant another loss for the Fish.

Speaking of Ziegler...

Wei-Yin Chen will get the start tonight for Miami. He is 1-2 with a 5.22 ERA in six starts this season. However, he has only given up three runs in 12 23 innings over his last two starts. Having said that, it will be interesting to see how he fares on the road. Although a small sample size, away from Marlins Park, he’s pitching an abysmal 11.25 ERA in three starts, including a nine-run outing earlier in May.

While Chen comes into this matchup feeling hot, his counterpart Jordan Lyles might not be feeling the same. He has a 3.83 ERA in 42.1 IP the year, but in his last two starts, he’s allowed nine runs in only 10 23 innings.

Thread Question: If Brad Ziegler eventually gets DFA’d, who should take his place in the bullpen? Who from the minors would you like to be seen added to the ‘pen?