The Florida Marlins know they have to play well during their season-high 13-game homestand to stay in the playoff chase.
The Marlins will look to pick up where they left off on Tuesday when they play the middle game of their series with the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Florida is only two games behind Houston in the NL wild-card race after Tuesday’s 5-0 win.
“This is a great team,” said A.J. Burnett, who pitched a three-hitter. “We’ve got great pitching. We’ve got a great bullpen. We’ve got great defense and we’ve got great hitters. So, we’ve got a great chance to do it—and I’m going to do everything in my power to get us there.”
While the Marlins hope to take advantage of two weeks of home games, the Diamondbacks are just getting started on a season-high 12-game road trip that could go a long way toward determining who wins the lowly NL West.
Arizona is just four games behind first-place San Diego, but still has to finish this series and then travel to NL East-leading Atlanta, Central-leading St. Louis and Cincinnati for nine games.
The Diamondbacks will send Brad Halsey to the mound on Wednesday. The 24-year-old left-hander has been stellar over his last six starts, going 4-0 with a 2.09 ERA.
“I like him,” Houston manager Phil Garner said after losing to Halsey and the Diamondbacks 7-3 on Thursday. “I think he’s going to be a real good pitcher.”