Major League Baseball

Rockies look to pick on lowly Marlins again

mlb14MARLINS (45-76) AT ROCKIES (55-67)
8:10 p.m. ET; ATTSN-RM, FS-F, MLB.TV

Don Mattingly has an unknown future with the Miami Marlins (+2), but the manager likes the potential of the team and mix of veterans on the roster.

The Marlins, at 45-76 after a 3-0 road loss to the Colorado Rockies (-2) on Friday night, have the worst record in the National League, but they have some young talent that is being mentored by experienced players. Miami got one veteran back in the lineup Friday when infielder Neil Walker was activated from the 10-day injured list.

Walker went 1-for-4 with a triple in his return from sprained right index finger that cost him 12 games. The Marlins when 3-9 in his absence but hope his return will give them a boost on the six-game road trip that continues Saturday in Denver.

Miami right-hander Hector Noesi (0-2, 8.18 ERA) will face Colorado for the first time in his career when he gets the start against Rockies righty German Marquez (11-5, 4.75).

Walker’s return gives Mattingly more options throughout the lineup.

“It’s good to get Walk back, gives us a … switch-hitter and a guy who can play both corners,” Mattingly said before Friday’s game. “It just helps our lineup, lets us stretch it different ways.”

Walker, along with veterans Curtis Granderson, Martin Prado and Starlin Castro, have given the younger players an example to follow.

“Those guys have been great,” Mattingly said. “Grandy’s awesome, Martin’s been with us awhile and he’s great. Star’s more of the example guy because he plays every day. … Walk’s good about sharing information with these guys.”

The Marlins might have a tough time going against Marquez, who has been Colorado’s best pitcher this season. This will be the fifth start of his career against Miami and second of the season. He is 1-3 with a 5.49 ERA against them but got his lone win on March 29 when he threw six innings of one-run ball in a 6-1 Rockies victory.

Over his past five starts, Marquez is 3-0 with a 3.27 ERA. He got the win Sunday at San Diego, allowing three runs on five hits in eight innings.

Noesi spent most of the season at Triple-A New Orleans, going 11-4 with a 3.82 ERA in 21 starts before he was promoted to Miami on Aug. 6. He will be making his third big-league appearance of the year.

Noesi’s first start at Coors Field will be against an offense that has struggled at times but is always potent, especially at home. Ryan McMahon has homered in back-to-back games, leadoff hitter Charlie Blackmon his hitting .323 with 24 homers, Nolan Arenado hit his 28th long ball on Friday, and Trevor Story has 27 home runs.

Story, enjoying another good season, is on pace to finish with at least 20 home runs and 20 stolen bases for the second straight year. He stole his 17th base Friday night.

He also is having his best year at shortstop with just seven errors in 108 games, putting him in contention for Gold Glove consideration.

“He makes all the plays,” Rockies manager Bud Black said Friday. “I don’t know anyone better at going into the hole, spinning around and making the play. There are some good shortstops around, but I think he will be in the hunt.”

–Field Level Media

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