If the Miami Marlins can't find a way to end the longest stretch without a run in club history Monday night, they might wonder if they will ever score again this season.
That's because their next contest is in another hitter-friendly ballpark against a pitcher who has been awful in three big-league starts and struggled in his most recent outing in the minors.
The Marlins hope to take advantage of Drew Pomeranz's control issues when they start a four-game set against the Colorado Rockies.
Miami (35-61) has gone 37 innings without a run, the longest drought by any team in 28 years. The Houston Astros were held scoreless for 42 consecutive innings in July 1985.
The Marlins pitched well this weekend in limiting Milwaukee to nine runs over 28 innings, but were swept in the three-game set as they batted .143 (15 for 105).
Miami went 0 for 16 with runners in scoring position at Miller Park and the frustration was evident after Sunday's 1-0, 13-inning defeat.
"We continue to get great pitching, but our bats have been hit or miss - a lot more miss,' infielder Ed Lucas said. "We just can't get that timely hit. It's pretty embarrassing to have a three-game series and not score a run."
If the Marlins get shut out in nine innings Monday, it would be the second-longest streak since 1918. The Chicago Cubs went 48 innings without a run June 15-21, 1968.
The Marlins haven't scored since Derek Dietrich drove in two runs in the fourth inning of a 5-2, 10-inning loss to Washington on July 14.
"To get completely shut out in what I think is the best hitters' park in baseball is unbelievable,' manager Mike Redmond said.
It should be easier Monday. An average of 8.6 runs is scored in games at Miller Park, but that figure jumps to 9.7 at Coors Field.
Facing Pomeranz (0-3, 8.76 ERA) figures to also give the Miami offense some hope. The left-hander will be recalled from the minors after he was sent down July 11.
Pomeranz has issued 14 walks over 12 1-3 innings with Colorado (48-51) this year.
"I just want to reset," he told the Rockies' official website. "The walks were killing me. I was walking people and thinking too much, trying to do too much out there."
He allowed seven runs over 5 1-3 innings in a start Tuesday for Double-A Tulsa, but attributed the performance to a slider he has added to his repertoire. Pomeranz has failed to pitch past the fifth inning in 15 straight major league starts.
No Marlins hitter has faced Pomeranz more than twice.
Miami is looking to regroup after Giancarlo Stanton went 0 for 11 this weekend, Logan Morrison was 1 for 11 and Marcell Ozuna was 0 for 12. Justin Ruggiano is hitless in his last 14 at_bats.
The Rockies' Nolan Arenado can relate to those woes as he was hitless in 18 at_bats before singling in the go-ahead run in the sixth inning of Sunday's 4-3 win over the Cubs.
"Lately, I haven't been coming through for my teammates like I wish I could,' Arenado said. "But I've just got to keep hitting the ball hard and that's all I can do."
Miami will start right-hander Tom Koehler (1-5, 4.70), who has never faced Colorado. The Marlins have won three of his last five outings after losing 10 of his first 11.
The Associated Press News Service
The Associated Press
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