MIAMI (AP) — While the Marlins may be checking the trade market for starting pitching, Miami’s hitters are struggling to generate runs.
Miami was shut out for the second straight game and dominated by Jeremy Hellickson for the second time in a week during a 4-0 loss to the Philadelphia Phillies on Monday night.
“This is nothing more than a little blip on what’s going to happen through the course of the season,” Marlins manager Don Mattingly said. “It’s not like we’re not going to hit. I think we’re going to hit. I’m very confident of that.”
It is the first time the Marlins lost back-to-back games since dropping three straight June 28-30. They were also blanked Sunday 3-0 by the Mets and have not scored in 19 innings.
Hellickson threw six innings of one-hit ball Monday after limiting Miami to a run over eight innings in a 4-1 win five days prior.
“Just executing,” Hellickson said. “I don’t think it’s this lineup in particular. The last two games my balls have been down for the most part and just getting a lot of easy outs.”
The 29-year-old has been the subject of trade rumors, some connecting him to the Marlins.
“It doesn’t bother me,” Hellickson said. “Once I’m in this locker room and obviously you still see it on TV and stuff, but my focus was on helping us win today. Now it’s on to the next start. I see it and read about it, but it’s been like this for a few years so it’s pretty easy to block out right now.”
Hellickson retired the first nine batters he faced and finished with one walk, one strikeout and 70 pitches thrown before being lifted for a pinch hitter. He lowered his ERA to 3.65 and pitched at least six innings for a ninth straight start.
“I don’t want to lose him,” Phillies manager Pete Mackanin said. “I wish he could stay here. He’s that solid. He’s been like that the whole year.”
Tommy Joseph hit a two-out RBI double in the top of the eighth to break a scoreless tie, and David Hernandez (2-3) pitched an inning in relief to earn the victory as four Phillies pitchers combined on a two-hit shutout.
The Phillies scored three runs in the ninth off A.J. Ramos on an RBI single by Cesar Hernandez and two errors by the Marlins.
Miami outfielder Ichiro Suzuki grounded out in his only at-bat — a pinch-hit appearance in the eighth — to remain at 2,996 career hits.
Fernando Rodney (1-3) struck out the first two batters he faced in the eighth before walking Maikel Franco, who scored from first on Joseph’s double to left-center field.
Miami’s Jarred Cosart made his first start since April 22 and tossed five scoreless innings. He allowed three hits and one walk while striking out three.
“I’d be lying if I say I wasn’t nervous in the first inning,” Cosart said. “You kind of forget what a big league setting is like after a month and a half being gone. The ups and down of minor league, rehab in between, the heart was going.”
Cosart pitched in place of lefty Wei-Yin Chen, who was placed on the 15-day disabled list before the game with a left elbow strain.
Marlins: Chen was placed on the DL retroactive to July 21. … 1B Justin Bour (right ankle sprain) hopes to begin a rehab stint on Thursday. “He’s still having some trouble with some running things and some moving around issues, but we’re trying to get him game-like at-bats before he is physically able to do rehab games,” Mattingly said.
Phillies: RHP Jerad Eickhoff (6-11, 3.98 ERA) will start Tuesday’s game against the Marlins. Eickhoff allowed six runs, five earned, and nine hits in five innings in a 9-3 loss to the Marlins in his last start on July 21 in Philadelphia.
Marlins: RHP Tom Koehler (7-8, 4.42) is scheduled to start Tuesday’s game in a rematch of the July 21 game. Koehler pitched a season-high eight innings and allowed two hits and one earned run in the victory.
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