The Nationals have not been in Florida since the end of March when the Grapefruit League schedule concluded. We are almost 1/3 of the way through the season, and the Nationals finally have their first of 19-games against the NL East’s Marlins.
For the Marlins, they started the season poorly but have picked it up as of lately with some key series wins against the Dodgers and Mets. They had a series win all but certain against the Braves until the Marlins bullpen blew a 5-run lead in the 9th inning last Sunday.
These teams did get to face each other often during Spring Training and the Marlins certainly have a new-look with the departures of their entire 2017 starting outfield of Giancarlo Stanton, Christian Yelich, and Marcel Ozuna. They have added Starlin Castro to their middle infield and a few other familiar faces are in starting roles. With J.T. Realmuto behind the plate, the Marlins have really picked up the offense when Realmuto returned from a back injury after missing much of the first month of the season.
Tonight’s match-up features Max Scherzer and righty Jose Urena. The line-up will be interesting tonight as Mark Reynolds has hit Urena better than lefty Matt Adams. Splits are very similar with a slight advantage to the lefties. Urena gives up more hits in Marlins Park than on the road.
Like Gio Gonzalez who grew up in southern Florida, Michael Taylor also grew up in Fort Lauderdale and Taylor has hit well in the past in Florida. In Tampa, Taylor is a career .333 hitter and in Marlins Park he has a career OPS of .868. Trea Turner who also grew up two counties north of Miami has not done well in Marlins Park and hopes to change his luck this weekend. Maybe the good news for Trea is that some of the pitchers he has not done well against are no longer with the Marlins or not starting this weekend. Trea is batting .400 against Chen who is scheduled to pitch tomorrow.
While the Nationals are playing in Miami, is it coincidental that we hear Seth Romero is also nearby in proximity. It’s possible he could be reinstated shortly we hear from sources.
Washington Nationals vs. Miami Marlins
Stadium: Marlins Park, Miami, Florida
1st Pitch: 7:10 pm EDT
TV: MASN2; MLB App out-of-market
Nats Radio: 106.7 The Fan and via the MLB app
Line-ups subject to change without notice: