Miami (11-8) at Colorado (6-12)

Mostly Cloudy Currently: Denver, CO
Temp: 58° F
  • Game info: 8:35 pm EDT Tue Apr 26, 2005
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Josh Beckett and the major leagues’ best pitching staff begin an eight-game road trip when they open a three-game series against the Colorado Rockies— baseball’s top hitting club.

Florida leads the majors with a 2.27 team ERA, five complete games and four shutouts. Colorado, meanwhile, tops baseball with a .306 team batting average.

Beckett has been stellar so far. The right-hander allowed two runs, four hits and struck out seven in a 9-2 win over the New York Mets on Wednesday to improve to 3-1 with a 1.00 ERA in his first four starts.

“Like they always say, ‘hitting is contagious’,” Beckett said. “I believe pitching is too. Sometimes it’s contagious just for yourself to have confidence. My last couple of outings have been pretty good. I think we’re starting to jell together. I’m happy.”

Florida failed in its attempt to sweep the Cincinnati Reds on Sunday when it managed four hits in a 2-1 loss.

The Marlins didn’t score in the fourth and sixth innings despite having two runners on with one out. And in the ninth, they couldn’t get anyone home after putting runners on first and second.

“We couldn’t get the key hit,” Florida manager Jack McKeon said. “One hit could have broke the game open.”

Florida has won three straight on the road, but McKeon said his pitching staff will be tested in Colorado, where the Marlins are 19-38 all-time.

“It’s a mindset. You’ve got to pitch your regular game,” McKeon said. “If you look at the history of Coors Field, it’s the bases on balls that kill you. It’s when you walk a couple and then give up the three-run homer.”

The Rockies also failed to come away with a sweep over the weekend after losing 8-6 to the Los Angeles Dodgers on Sunday. They had won four of five before the defeat.

Colorado led 5-3 in the eighth, but its struggling relievers allowed Los Angeles to come back by allowing five runs in the inning. The Rockies’ bullpen has seven blown saves in nine chances this year.

“The bullpen has been an issue since Day 1,” manager Clint Hurdle said. “It hasn’t been doing things to give us a chance.”

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Starting Pitchers

J. Beckett LAD vs. J. Wright Tex
15-8 Record 8-16
3.38 ERA 5.46
166 K 101
58 BB 81
1.18 WHIP 1.65