Series Preview: Indians at Marlins

The Miami Marlins and Cleveland Indians will begin a two-game interleague series at Marlins Park starting on Tuesday.

The two teams split a two-game series in Cleveland last week and Miami sits at 8-20 on the season overall. The Marlins have the worst record in baseball, while Cleveland is in second place at 15-12.

The Marlins have lost three games in a row and struggled in all areas against the Philadelphia Phillies. Miami was been unable to find consistent offense and the pitching side while better, has been inconsistent as well.

Sandy Alcantara will start for Miami in the series opening game on Tuesday. Alcantara’s season perfectly represents the inconsistency of the pitching staff. The right-hander has looked electric at times and overmatched at other times. This kind of consistency issue is common with young pitchers and the 23-year old has been no exception. Alcantara will bring a 1-2 record and a 4.50 E.R.A into the start against Cleveland.

Caleb Smith has been Miami’s ace this season and he will start the series finale on Wednesday. Smith has put together four straight quality starts and he has done a good job of limiting damage in his outings. Smith has struck out eight hitters in each of his last two starts and he leads Miami with 37 strikeouts on the season. The lefty is 2-0 with a sparkling 2.17 E.R.A and would undoubtedly be Miami’s All-Star representative if rosters were constructed today.

The Marlins are expected to have Garrett Cooper’s services back for this series and he brings with him some much-needed power. Cooper has been sidelines for most of the season and he should go back to regular playing time quickly. Miami’s home run leader currently is Jorge Alfaro with five and the team only has 22 home runs total.

With Cooper back, Curtis Granderson could see a reduction in playing time. The veteran outfielder is hitting .182 this season and has been a starter for most of Miami’s games in 2019. Granderson is expected to serve as a fourth outfielder for the team going forward.

Tuesday’s game will get underway at 7:10 p.m.