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To shine, all Pablo López needs is run support

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The Marlins seem to be allergic to scoring runs almost every time López goes to the mound.

MLB: Colorado Rockies at Miami Marlins Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

On Tuesday, the Marlins scored six runs to beat the Rockies and give Pablo López a chance to pitch with a wide margin of error and, eventually, win. That was a rare game, though. To this point, López has been the victim of poor run support throughout the whole season, a trend that dates all the way back to 2019.

During this campaign, the Marlins have scored more than five runs just twice when López is pitching. The Fish won those two games. On the other hand, they scored three or fewer runs in eight of his 13 outings so far, including two shutouts (3-5).

In terms of pure run support, López entered June receiving one of the league’s lowest average production from his teammates (3.5, which includes a 14-8 win on April 13 vs. Braves). And even though the Marlins scored 11 runs in his two most recent performances, his RS/GS is still among the worst in MLB: 3.8 runs per start, the 12th-worst number around the league.

Another factor to measure how poor the Marlins’ offense has been with López on the mound and how rare Tuesday’s win was is no-decisions. He is tied with Blake Snell and Jordan Montgomery for the MLB lead among starting pitchers with eight ND.

Going back to the beginning of the 2019 season, the Marlins have scored less than five runs in 29 of 45 starts (64.4%) and have been shut out eight times in that span.

According to Baseball-Reference, these are López’s lifetime records based on run support:

  • 0-2 runs scored: 1-14, 4.05 ERA, 21 starts
  • 3-5 runs scored: 7-4, 3.70 ERA, 22 starts
  • 6-plus runs scored: 7-1, 4.72 ERA, 12 starts

López is now 2-3, with a 2.76 ERA over 13 starts. He’s been improving year after year, yet remains underrated for reasons that are beyond his control. Hopefully, Tuesday’s game is a better reflection of the support he’ll be getting from the Marlins moving forward.