MIAMI (CBSMiami/Gracenote) – Two teams moving in opposite directions of late will link up in South Florida this week.
The Oakland Athletics are struggling to find quality pitching and are losers of four of their last five games.
The Miami Marlins, who host the Athletics in the opener of a two-game interleague series on Tuesday, are feasting on struggling pitching staffs in recent weeks.
The Marlins had a string of four straight games scoring six or more runs come to an end in a 3-1 loss at Pittsburgh on Sunday but still got some pop out of the lineup when ageless wonder Ichiro Suzuki cranked a home run in the eighth.
Miami is getting power from several unexpected sources and watched backup first baseman Tyler Moore hit a pair of home runs on Friday before catcher J.T. Realmuto and infielder Derek Dietrich went deep on Saturday.
The Oakland staff is stingy with the home run ball, ranking 11th in the AL in home runs allowed (73) entering the week, but yielded a total of 33 runs in dropping four of the last five games.
Trying to turn that around for Oakland on Tuesday will be right-hander Jharel Cotton while the Marlins counter with Jose Urena.
TV: 7:10 p.m. ET, NBCSN California (Oakland), FSN Florida (Miami)
PITCHING MATCHUP: Athletics RH Jharel Cotton (3-6, 5.20 ERA) vs. Marlins RH Jose Urena (4-2, 3.96)
Cotton has not won since being inserted back into the rotation on May 27 and allowed four runs on four hits and four walks in six innings against Toronto on Wednesday without factoring in the decision.
The 25-year-old issued a total of 11 walks in 17 1/3 innings over his last three outings. Cotton is making his first career interleague start.
Urena struggles to work deep into games as well but earned the win in three of his last four starts despite failing to record an out in the sixth inning of any of those contests.
The Dominican Republic native allowed three runs on three hits and three walks in five innings at the Chicago Cubs on Wednesday but earned the win as the Marlins grabbed a 6-5 triumph.
Urena made one previous start against Oakland on May 23 and was rocked for six runs and four hits in five innings but still ended up with a win.
- Marlins RF Giancarlo Stanton (wrist) was limited to pinch-hitting duty on Sunday but is expected to be back in the starting lineup on Tuesday.
- Oakland rookie LF Jaycob Brugman is 6-for-12 over the last three games.
- Miami LF Marcell Ozuna scored six runs in the last five games.
(© Copyright 2017 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. Gracenote contributed to this report.)