Miami (48-47) at San Diego (37-57)

Cloudy Currently: San Diego, CA
Temp: 68° F
  • Game info: 3:35 pm EDT Wed Jul 22, 2009
  • TV: FSFL
Preview | Box Score | Recap

If anything, facing the San Diego Padres might be helping the Florida Marlins regain some collective confidence.

On Wednesday, the Marlins look to complete a three-game sweep of the lowly Padres at Petco Park.

Hanley Ramirez(notes) had three hits and Jorge Cantu(notes) added two with an RBI as Florida (48-47) held on for its second straight 3-2 victory over San Diego on Tuesday.

Though their latest success has come at the expense of the Padres (37-57), the Marlins are back over .500 and building momentum after losing five of their last six contests - which included being swept by NL East-leading Philadelphia at home over the weekend.

Despite winning two in a row, Florida remains seven games behind the Phillies, winners of 10 straight.

While the Marlins are in position to record their fourth sweep of a road series this season, they are still struggling at the plate. Florida is batting .228 while scoring 11 runs over its last five contests.

Ramirez, however, remains the Marlins most consistent offensive performer. The All-Star shortstop leads the NL with a .348 batting average and is 7 for 18 (.389) in his last four contests. He is a lifetime .333 hitter versus the Padres.

After a solid outing from Chris Volstad(notes) on Tuesday, Ricky Nolasco(notes) (6-7, 5.77 ERA) takes the ball for the Marlins after giving up four runs and seven hits in six innings of a 2-1, 12-inning loss to Philadelphia on Friday.

The right-hander, who’s 2-4 with a 6.99 ERA in nine starts on the road, hopes for a better second half, if only to help his team improve.

“I just want to finish the season off strong,” Nolasco told the Marlins’ official Web site. “Right now, there aren’t many personal goals going on for me. It’s a team thing and the main goal here for everybody is to go out and try to make a run at the playoffs.”

Nolasco is 1-2 with a 4.82 ERA versus San Diego as a starter.

The Padres counter with Josh Geer(notes) (1-5, 6.02), who’s facing Florida for the first time and looking for his first win since May 23.

In his last outing, the right-hander gave up five runs and seven hits while walking a season-high four in four innings of a 5-3 loss to Colorado on Friday.

“I would rather allow a walk than a double, triple or a home run,” Geer told the Padres’ official Web site.

Adrian Gonzalez(notes) had an RBI and rookie Kyle Blanks(notes) hit his first career homer Tuesday for the Padres, who are a major league-worst 12-32 since June 1.

“Altogether, we’re not winning,” Padres pitcher Chad Gaudin(notes) said. “We are just trying to pick up the pieces and keep it going. You have to stay positive.”

After going 3 for 36 with 10 strikeouts in his previous 10 games, Gonzalez is batting .357 (5 for 14) with a homer and two RBIs in his last four contests. He’s 3 for 10 versus Nolasco.

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Starting Pitchers

R. Nolasco Min vs. J. Geer SD
13-9 Record 1-7
5.06 ERA 5.96
195 K 54
44 BB 23
1.25 WHIP 1.35

Scoreboard

Wednesday, Jul 22