MIAMI (AP) — The Miami Marlins are on their longest home win streak in nearly five years, thanks in large part to a very productive offense.
On Friday night, the Marlins hitters look to continue their impressive pace in the opener of a weekend series against the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Miami (14-14) has won six straight at Marlins Park, the team’s longest streak since the stadium opened in 2012. It is the longest home winning streak for the franchise since an eight-game run June 20-July 1, 2009.
Over the last six contests in their own park, the Marlins have recorded 65 hits and scored 41 runs while compiling a .395 on-base percentage. They have recorded 10 or more hits in five of those games.
“It’s huge for us,” manager Mike Redmond said after his team beat Atlanta 5-4 on Thursday to complete a three-game sweep. “These guys keep battling and keep pushing forward and moving on and really picking each other up playing with a lot of energy out there. We’re out there playing the game the right way. Guys are battling, competing. That’s how we’re winning ballgames.”
Marlins slugger Giancarlo Stanton should be happy to see the Dodgers. He’s 11 for 30 with five homers in his last seven meetings against them.
Tom Koehler (2-2, 2.97 ERA) hopes that trend continues Friday when he gets the ball in the opener for Miami. The right-hander had his worst start of the season Sunday, allowing four runs and four walks over five innings in a 4-0 loss to the New York Mets.
He will be opposed by Josh Beckett (0-2, 2.45), who is coming off his best start of the season for the Dodgers (17-12). He pitched a season-best eight innings and limited Colorado to two runs and four hits April 25, but remained winless in 12 starts since Sept. 30, 2012.
“I think (the performance) was a step in the right direction for me, personally,” Beckett said. “I wanted to show myself that I could do some things I haven’t done in a while, like pitching innings.”
Those are the only runs the veteran right-hander has surrendered in his past three starts, spanning 18 innings.
Beckett, who pitched for the Marlins from 2001-2005, has faced his former team once, yielding four runs in seven innings of a 4-1 loss for Boston on June 11, 2012.
Los Angeles completed a three-game sweep of Minnesota on Thursday, taking both ends of a doubleheader to improve to 11-3 on the road this season. Yasiel Puig went 8 for 14 with three RBIs in the series during which the Dodgers collected 38 hits and scored 19 runs.
“His whole game seems to be calming down, base-running, defense,” manager Don Mattingly said. “At the plate we’re seeing him be more patient. The sky is the limit for Yasiel Puig.”
Also swinging a hot bat for Mattingly’s team is Adrian Gonzalez, who is batting .429 (12 for 28) with four homers and eight RBIs during a seven-game hitting streak.
The Dodgers have won five of seven at Marlins Park.
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