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Marlins vs. Phillies August 2-5 series preview

The Fish head up to Philadelphia for a four-game series against the NL East division leaders.

MLB: Washington Nationals at Miami Marlins Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

All individual player stats updated entering Thursday.

The fourth place Fish (46-63) will be finishing up a road trip with four games against the first place Phillies (59-48).

The Fish had an unexpected off day yesterday because their game with the Atlanta Braves was rained out. The Marlins are 2-3 in their last five games, and have played just under .500 baseball since the second half of the season started.

The Phils are doing just a bit better than the Fish. They have a 6-6 record since the All-Star break and enter this series clinging to a half-game lead over Atlanta in the NL East.

The Phils bolstered their lineup at the trade deadline by acquiring catcher Wilson Ramos, but he is currently on the disabled list, so the Fish will not see him during this visit. The Fish also made moves at the deadline—they traded Brad Ziegler and Cameron Maybin to free up money and gain prospects.

Probable Pitching Matchups

Game Pitchers Wins Strikeouts Earned Run Average WHIP
Game Pitchers Wins Strikeouts Earned Run Average WHIP
1 Nick Pivetta 6 134 4.85 1.33
1 Pablo López 2 23 5.34 1.29
2 Vince Velasquez 7 122 4.02 1.24
2 Trevor Richards 3 71 4.06 1.41
3 Zach Eflin 2 47 5.06 1.25
3 José Ureña 3 98 4.40 1.23
4 Aaron Nola 12 142 2.35 0.97
4 Wei-Yin Chen 3 62 5.86 1.49

Pitching hasn’t been the strong suit for either of these teams. Each starter listed for the series have given up multiple runs and tend to have command issues. Aaron Nola is the exception, emerging as a legitimate frontline guy at age 25 with a 2.35 earned run average and making every scheduled start in 2018.

Wei-Yin Chen will be facing Nola in the final game of the series. Chen’s away numbers have been abysmal. It hurts just to write it, but he has a 10.27 ERA on the road, so that game is looking like a bust.

MLB: Washington Nationals at Miami Marlins Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

The upside for the Fish is they have Trevor Richards pitching and he has had a three-game stretch of fantastic starts. Pablo López on the mound against Nick Pivetta to start the series could also be interesting. López is still getting his footing in the majors, but the potential is there for him. Aside from Sunday’s probable bloodbath, these pitching matchups will mostly be a toss-up between the two teams for this series.

Top Hitters of the Last 7 Days

Phillies Average Runs Home runs Runs Batted In Stolen Bases
Phillies Average Runs Home runs Runs Batted In Stolen Bases
Rhys Hoskins .357 7 4 6 0
Maikel Franco .310 4 2 3 0
Nick Williams .333 2 2 3 0
Carlos Santana .250 2 1 6 0
Odúbel Herrera .273 3 1 2 0
J.T. Realmuto .360 4 1 4 0
Brian Anderson .304 4 1 2 0
Starlin Castro .333 2 0 0 1
Martín Prado .286 1 0 3 0
Magneuris Sierra .316 1 0 2 0

The Phillies eclipse the Fish in nearly every hitting category besides batting average. The big advantage they will have going into the series is their power numbers. Their top five hitters have combined for 10 home runs in the last seven days. The Fish in comparison only have two. Rhys Hoskins has been on an absolute tear as of late and will be a force to reckon with.

Meanwhile, Miami will have to string hits together when men are on base if they want to keep up with the Phils. Maybin was thriving in that department, but his recent departure leaves the Marlins more reliant on raw rookie Magneuris Sierra.

Starlin Castro has one stolen base, while no one else on either team has stolen any bases in the last seven days. J.T. Realmuto continues to crush the ball like he has all season. He has a .360 batting average in the last seven days. Brian Anderson has also continued to show people why he should be the National League Rookie of the Year.

The Fish will have to play smart, aggressive ball if they want to take this series from the Phils.

Game Times

  • Thursday: 7:05 p.m.
  • Friday: 7:05 p.m.
  • Saturday: 7:05 p.m.
  • Sunday: 1:35 p.m.