Marlins
Miami Marlins starting pitcher Jesus Luzardo throws during the first inning of a baseball game against the Philadelphia Phillies, Sunday, July 9, 2023, in Miami. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky)

Marlins Look to Continue Second Half Success

The Miami Marlins look to continue their successful season Friday against the Baltimore Orioles. The Marlins have shocked the league this season with their performance in the first half of the season. They are currently in second place in the National League East with a record of 53-39. They sit behind the Atlanta Braves, who are currently 60-29.

Strengths

Second baseman Luis Arraez, who has a batting average of .383, has led Miami offensively. Arraez has made hitting look easy this season and has a chance of recording a .400 batting average on the season. Southpaw Jesus Luzardo has been excellent on the mound for the Marlins with a record of 8-5 and 129 strikeouts. Braxton Garrett has also been producing with a record of 5-2 and 101 strikeouts.

Improvements

Despite the success in the first half of the season, there is always room for improvement. Although Sandy Alcántara won the 2022 NL CY Young Award, he’s struggled this year. He has recorded a 4.72 ERA and has a 3-7 record.

Concerns

Additionally, the pitching depth for the Marlins could be a concern. Alcántara is on pace for a 200 inning season, and Luzardo has reached his career high in innings pitched at 109. This can be a cause for concern headed into the second half of the season because of possible fatigue later on, leading to injury. Both Edward Cabrera and Trevor Rogers are on the injured list, causing younger pitchers to step up. Though, the team hopes to Cabrera and Rogers will return in the second half.

If Miami can continue their second half success, they’ll be on track to make their fourth playoff appearance in franchise history. First pitch against the Orioles is set for 7:05 p.m. in Baltimore, and Alcántara will start on the mound for the Marlins. He’ll go up against Dean Kramer of Baltimore, who has 4.78 ERA on the season. The Orioles currently sit in second place in the AL East, and are just two games back of the Tampa Bay Rays for the division lead.

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