Miami (56-58) at Milwaukee (54-60)

Partly Cloudy Currently: Milwaukee, WI
Temp: 26° F
  • Game info: 7:05 pm EDT Sat Aug 14, 2004
Preview | Box Score | Recap

Mike Lowell cannot figure out what is wrong with the Florida Marlins.

In danger of falling out of the NL playoff race, the defending World Series champions will try to win for just the second time in six games when they meet the Milwaukee Brewers in the middle game of their series at Miller Park.

“We’re our own enigma,” third baseman Lowell said. “I wish I knew what it was.”

Lowell did not start Friday after he was hit in the knee by a pitch during batting practice, and the rest of the Marlins failed to provide much of a boost in a 6-4 loss in the series opener.

Lowell struck out as a pinch hitter in the ninth inning after fouling a pitch off the same leg he injured before the game.

“I heard it’s Friday the 13th, so that’s pretty positive,” he said jokingly.

The Marlins, who fell two games below .500, are fifth in the NL wild-card race—5 1/2 games behind the Chicago Cubs and San Diego Padres.

“I don’t know what … to say anymore,” Florida manager Jack McKeon said. “I give up. It’s almost, ‘Which team is going to show up tonight?’ And it’s the same hitters. I am looking for a spark.”

Russell Branyan and Lyle Overbay provided the spark for Milwaukee on Friday, as they each hit two-run homers to help the Brewers win for just the third time in 10 games. Wes Obermueller gave up two hits in seven shutout innings to earn his first win in almost 11 weeks, and Dan Kolb pitched the ninth for his 33rd save in 35 chances.

The Brewers now hope for a strong pitching performance from Jorge De La Rosa, who will be making his major league debut.

The 23-year-old left-hander was called up from Triple-A Indianapolis on Thursday when the Brewers placed right-hander Brooks Kieschnick on the 15-day disabled list with tendinitis in his right shoulder.

De La Rosa was acquired from Arizona on Dec. 1 as part of the deal that sent first baseman Richie Sexson to the Diamondbacks.

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Starting Pitchers

D. Willis Mil vs. J. De La Rosa Col
10-11 Record 0-3
4.02 ERA 6.35
139 K 5
61 BB 14
1.38 WHIP 1.90