The Florida Marlins have played outstanding baseball on this road trip, but Cole Hamels will be standing in their way of a third straight road series win.
The Marlins aim to win their fourth straight Saturday night when they continue their three-game set against Hamels and the Phillies.
Florida (8-5) snapped a six-game losing streak against Philadelphia (9-4) with a 4-3 win Friday. Pinch-hitter Greg Dobbs hit a go-ahead, two-run single in the seventh against his former team after Roy Oswalt left the game with a lower back strain after six innings.
"I heard a couple boos and a couple of cheers," Dobbs said. "I came in here to do my job and help the team."
The Phillies led 3-1 in the fifth after Raul Ibanez's second RBI single of the game. However, Philadelphia's bullpen, which wasn't used the previous two days as Roy Halladay and Cliff Lee threw complete games, couldn't hold the lead after Oswalt departed.
The Marlins are hitting .387 with runners in scoring position during their three-game streak after totaling one run and nine hits in consecutive losses to Houston and Atlanta on April 10 and 12, respectively.
Florida could have a difficult time continuing that type of production against Hamels (1-1, 5.59 ERA), who is coming off an outstanding outing.
Hamels gave up four hits and struck out eight in seven innings of a 3-0 win over Atlanta on Sunday, bouncing back after lasting only 2 2-3 innings against the Mets on April 5.
Hamels is 4-7 with a 3.73 ERA in 15 starts against the Marlins, but was 2-1 with a 1.25 ERA in three last year. He struck out a season-high 13 in 6 2-3 innings of a 2-1 victory Sept. 14, giving up one run and five hits.
The Phillies, who have yet to lose consecutive games this season, are hitting .218 while scoring 17 runs over the past five contests after averaging seven runs and batting .344 during their first eight games.
Ryan Howard has been one of the main culprits in the reduced offense. He hit .524 with two home runs and three doubles in the first five games, but is batting .107 since with two extra-base hits and six strikeouts. He went 0 for 3 with two strikeouts Friday.
Anibal Sanchez (0-1, 6.97) gets the ball for Florida hoping to bounce back from two poor starts to open the year.
After a 105-pitch, 5 2-3-inning outing against Washington on April 5, the right-hander allowed six runs and 13 hits in 4 2-3 innings of a 7-1 loss to Houston on Sunday.
"It was a rough outing," manager Edwin Rodriguez told the Marlins' official website. "But I'm sure he'll come back and be fine."
Sanchez has lost his last two starts against the Phillies, falling to 3-7 with a 5.93 ERA in his career against them. He went 1-3 with a 6.86 ERA in 2010.
Howard is batting .300 in 20 at_bats against Sanchez with two doubles, two home runs and eight walks.
The Associated Press News Service
The Associated Press
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