Miami Marlins starting pitching turning the corner, but the losses keep mounting

If there was a bright spot for the Miami Marlins in their series against the San Francisco Giants, it’s that the team’s starting pitchers during the three-game set rounded into form.

The problem? An on-again, off-again offense and a bullpen still finding its way couldn’t always back up those efforts.

The end result: The Marlins dropped two of three games to the Giants, capped by a 3-1 loss to the Giants on Wednesday.

Miami (4-15) also dropped the first game of the series 4-3 on Monday but won the second game of the series 6-3 on Tuesday.

The Marlins have yet to win consecutive games this season and have dropped all six series they have played.

“These guys are fighting their tails off and working and we’re just not we’re not seeing the wins,” Marlins manager Skip Schumaker said. “That’s the most frustrating thing.”

The Giants (8-11) took the lead for good on Wednesday when Nick Ahmed grounded into a double play to score Thairo Estrada in the seventh against Declan Cronin and Matt Chapman hitting an RBI double against Anthony Bender in the eighth.

Miami’s lone run on Wednesday came via a Bryan De La Cruz solo home run in the sixth to tie the game at 1-1.

It spoiled what was arguably Trevor Rogers’ best outing of the young season. The 26-year-old lefty, who missed most of the 2023 season with injury, held the Giants to one earned run on four hits while striking out six. After giving up that run on an Estrada RBI double in the second, Rogers retired 11 consecutive batters before giving up a pair of hits in the sixth.

After the game, pitching coach Mel Stottlemyre Jr. told Rogers, “You’re finally pitching out there.”

“It was kind of hard for me to hide my smile right there,” Rogers said.

Rogers’ effort followed strong outings from the Marlins’ other two starting pitchers in the Giants series.

Edward Cabrera and Ryan Weathers each struck out 10 batters over six innings apiece on Monday and Tuesday, respectively.

All told, Marlins starters held the Giants to four runs over 17 2/3 innings with 26 strikeouts against just two walks.

In the first 16 games of the season entering the Giants series, Marlins starters had posted a 4.70 ERA.

“You hoped that this would turn,” Schumaker said. “The starting pitching, they did enough to to win and they kept us in ballgames.”

Miami Marlins catcher Jhonny Pereda (89) makes his Major League debut today against the San Francisco Giants at loanDepot park, Miami, Florida on Wednesday, April 17, 2024.
Miami Marlins catcher Jhonny Pereda (89) makes his Major League debut today against the San Francisco Giants at loanDepot park, Miami, Florida on Wednesday, April 17, 2024.

A long-awaited debut

Catcher Jhonny Pereda, who turns 28 on Thursday, made his MLB debut with the Marlins on Wednesday after 11 seasons in the minor leagues.

The opportunity came after the Marlins placed catcher Christian Bethancourt on the 10-day injured list Monday with a viral illness.

“it’s great, great feeling,” Pereda said. “It really caught me off guard. I was thinking about it, making the major leagues, but I didn’t know it was gonna happen this quickly [this season]. I wasn’t expecting that to happen. But being here is something incredible.”

Roster move

Prior to Wednesday’s game, the Marlins optioned right-handed relief pitcher George Soriano to Triple A Jacksonville and recalled reliever Declan Cronin to fill his spot in the bullpen.

Soriano, who made his MLB debut in 2023, has struggled so far this season. In seven innings over eight relief appearances, Soriano has pitched to a 10.29 ERA.

Up next

The Marlins will head back on the road for a seven-game road trip. It starts with a four-game set at the Chicago Cubs from Thursday through Sunday before wrapping up with three games at the Atlanta Braves from Monday through Wednesday.