Reporting Tim Kephart
PHILADELPHIA, Pa. (CBSMiami.com) – The Marlins finished off their descent into the abyss Thursday by taking another beating at the hands of the division-leading Philadelphia Phillies. It was Phillies pitcher Cliff Lee who shutout the Marlins and helped his own cause with two hits and an RBI en route to a 3-0 victory.
Lee (7-5) didn’t allow a hit until Mike Stanton grounded a single to center with two outs in the fifth. He struck out four and walked two to record his seventh career shutout and second this season.
Lee got the Phillies started offensively with an RBI double in the fourth. After an 0-for-13 start at the plate, he’s 8 for 20 with two doubles and four RBIs.
Ryan Howard homered for the NL East-leading Phillies, who improved their major league-best record to 44-26.
The struggling Marlins have lost 15 of 16. They were 29-19 and just one game behind Philadelphia after a 1-0 victory in San Francisco on May 26 but are 3-18 since and have fallen 11 1/2 games out.
Florida’s Javier Vazquez (3-7) allowed two runs and eight hits in five innings in his best start in a while. He entered with the highest ERA in the majors among starters at 7.09.
Lee has been outstanding in his last three starts, going 3-0 with an 0.38 ERA. The lefty is 5-1 since losing at St. Louis on May 16 and has lowered his ERA to 3.12.
“I don’t know how much more he can do,” Phillies manager Charlie Manuel said. “He did a super job.”
Logan Morrison had Florida’s other hit, a single leading off the seventh. The Marlins were outscored 25-6 in the series.
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