Marlins Today

June 25, 2009 11:49 PM

Game #73: Marlins vs Orioles

Land Shark Stadium - 7:10 PM - Ricky Nolasco vs Jason Berken


Judging by the quality of his last four starts, after his baseball career, Ricky Nolasco may have a future as a jeweler. Nolasco spun his fourth straight gem on Wednesday night, shutting out the Orioles over seven innings. He was backed by RBI hits by Cody Ross and Hanley Ramirez as the Marlins took their fourth straight to get back above .500.

Ricky Nolasco: 7 IP, 7 H, 2 R (0 ER), BB, 7 K - Proved that its not only Chris Volstad who needs to pay attention to runners as he allowed Brian Roberts to get a walking lead from second and get to third uncontested with only one out in the 1st but then came back to strike out Nick Markakis and get Aubrey Huff to ground out to end the inning. After that, he set down his next eight in order and faced the minimum through his next four innings before running into trouble in the 6th after the frame was prolonged by a two out error by Emilio Bonifacio. Nolasco walked Huff and gave up an RBI single to Melvin Mora. The walk was just his fifth to his 25 Ks since his return. He erased it quickly though, striking out Luke Scott to end the inning with the lead intact. Since his return, hitters are just 1 for 12 against him with RISP. Nolasco then once again got back to facing the minimum in his last inning. His seven innings of work gave the Marlins exactly what they needed with a very thin bullpen: a 7+ inning start.

Emilio Bonifacio: 1-4, 2 R - Last night, he reached on a bad throw by the pitcher and scored on a dropped throw by Greg Zaun. Tonight he reached on a bad throw by the third baseman that hit him and allowed him to get to second on a routine grounder. Later, he reached on a very questionable call at first then caught the Orioles napping on a Hanley single, scoring all the way from first. His luck followed him onto the field as he errored for the thirteenth time this year which leads all MLB third basemen, allowing a run to score. However, it could've easily been two errors as the ball went off his glove before he fielded it. Despite all his good fortune though, he still hurt his team more than he helped it. Despite Bonifacio's latest version of a hot streak, it appears as though the front office is finally done making excuses for him as the Marlins have expressed interest in Mark DeRosa. Unfortunately, so have three other teams, all of which have the ability to outbid the Fish. Even if DeRosa falls through though, Gaby Sanchez is hitting over .300 in AAA. Speaking of New Orleans, with no room on the bench, it's looking like that is where Bonifacio will be spending the second half of his season.

Cody Ross: 3-4, 2 RBI - Knocked in Dan Uggla from first in the 4th and from third in the 8th. The second half of June hasn't been kind to Cody in terms of RBIs (neither was the Bermuda Traingle as he would have had a second RBI if the ball didn't bounce over the wall) as it was only his third in his last ten games. However, it hasn't been because of a lack of hits. Ross has ten hits and is batting .333 over that span. On the other hand, it can be almost completely attributed to the cold streaks the guys ahead of him have been on as Jeremy Hermida and Uggla are just 14 for their last 68.

Dan Uggla: 2-3, 2 R, BB, K - This half of that equation had a good night tonight, going 2-3 and a good series thus far as he's 4 for his last 9. Unlike Ross, this is a guy the second half of June has been kind to him considering how the month started as Uggla has hits in six of his last eight, a span in which he's upped his monthly average from .214 to .223. On top of that, Uggla has also been playing some very good defense. He's never been a better second half player (in fact, his post All-Star stats are dramatically worse than his pre All-Star stats) so there is some cause for concern here. He's had some good streaks like the one he's on right now but he's just never been able to find his groove.

Jeremy Hermida: 1-4 - Until his double in the 6th, he hadn't gotten a hit since June 13 and had only been on base twice. Over that 0-23 span, he had lowered his average from .281 to .258. Hopefully this marked the end of the slump. If not, even though Hermida has always performed better in the second half, with Brett Carroll playing well, Hermida may soon get a short vacay in an attempt to get his head straight. If that doesn't work, because of the Marlins' position in the standings, a platoon may be in order.

Hanley Ramirez: 1-3, 2 RBI, BB - Knocked in two runs in the 1st. Before this series, the marlins were 0 for their last 26 with RISP. They're now 10 for their last 25. Hanley has been responsible for six of the 14 RBIs over that span. Over the past week, he's hitting .333 with two homers.

John Baker: 2-4, 2 K - Took a fastball right down the middle for strike three in his first ab then after getting ahead 3-0 in his third one, took two more dead center fastballs then swung at ball four to end a second and third situation. With RISP, his seasonal average is now down to .250. Bonifacio can't go soon enough so that this guy can get back to the spot in which he's hitting .311: the two hole.

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