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Marlins bullpen well rested heading into Tuesday's game in Houston

HOUSTON -- After working their butts off in relief of Josh Johnson Friday in San Diego and working overtime to save Heath Bell's rear-end two nights prior to that in San Francisco, the Marlins bullpen has to feel pretty well rested heading into Tuesday night's game at Minute Maid Park.

With Mark Buehrle and Carlos Zambrano tossing complete games two of the last three nights, Marlins relievers have played the role of happy spectator for the most part.

New closer Steve Cishek, who worked a career-high three innings of relief Friday to pick up the win, has had three days off. Edward Mujica has pitched just once over the last four days.

Right-hander Ryan Webb, who along with left-handed specialist Randy Choate and Mujica are the only relievers to work since Saturday, said despite Bell's struggles the bullpen has proven over this 7-0 West Coast trip it can get the job done in some pressure situations.

"That's what you need," Webb said. "That's what's going to count. Our goal is to get to the postseason, and that's going to help in the postseason. That's going to help in a tight race at the end of the year in this tough division.

"We're going to be playing some good teams, but we've got a good team too. So we've played a lot of close games, a lot of good pitching matchups. So to get the experience early is good for a lot of guys, especially for some of the younger guys that we do have, stepping up to do these late-inning roles. We've got guys that can pitch in all those situations. So it gives [manager] Ozzie [Guillen] a lot of options to go to."

Take Bell (0-3, 4 blown saves, 11.42 ERA) and demoted left-hander Mike Dunn out of the mix and the Marlins bullpen would rank much better than sixth in the National League in ERA (3.45 ERA). They also might not rank right behind Colorado for the league-lead with seven blown saves.

Together, Webb, Cishek, Mujica, Choate, and right-hander Chad Gaudin have combined for a 1.81 ERA in 59 2/3 innings with 49 strikeouts and 21 walks. Opponents have hit just .189 off those five in 216 at-bats.

> The Marlins are off to their best May start in franchise history. The previous best start was 5-2, done three times (last, 2008). The Marlins finished that month with a 16-11 record, which tied for the most May wins in Club history (also, 1997 and 1996). The Franchise record for most wins in any month is 19, done in August 1997.

TUESDAY'S LINEUP

> Marlins (15-14): 1. Jose Reyes SS, 2. Emilio Bonifacio CF, 3. Hanley Ramirez 3B, 4. Logan Morrison LF, 5. Omar Infante 2B, 6. Giancarlo Stanton RF, 7. Gaby Sanchez 1B, 8. John Buck C, 9. Anibal Sanchez P.

Comments

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Seeing is Believing

Soooo by the team the bullpen is needed again ,there are no excuses for failure. Right? Right.

Seeing is Believing

team is time

spitballer

JJ is piching tonight....bullpen get ready!

bob

Marlins bullpen definitely owes Buerhle and Zambrano dinner, or at least a beer. JJ and Bell definitely need to turn it around.

laurelbowie

I think JJ is pitching tomorrow. Anibal tonight.

Stan M

I, along with virtually everyone else on this blog, has vilified Perez as a pitching coach. However, if he is responsible for the hitters being more patient and taking more pitches, then some credit is due him. Tonight will be a good time to wait this kid out for he will undoubtedly be nervous. Then clobber his "got to throw a strike" pitch. Sanchez should eat this team up, but tomorrow will be the more important game. Can JJ come back and be his old self? If he gets knocked around by this group of AAAA hitters, it's time to seek an alternative. We can't compete and give away every 5th game, that's for sure.

D.U.H.

perez is a shitttty pitching coach...that is why he's the hitting coach...

flagstafffishfan

I knew what you meant Stan. Gotta agree that the Fish are having more quality AB's. Eddy proven us wrong. Have to be patient with the rookie pitching tonight and wait him out if need be....please please don't turn him into Cy Young for one game which seems to always happen. I think JJ is going to be on tomorrow night, just a hunch.

psychic friends network

do you have a hunch for the 8th race at Belmont tomorrow?

Glags

Slow your role guys. All the scoring these last two games have come on home runs. Which is fine if you're going to lead the league in homers but we don't have enough sluggers for that to happen. At any rate, I'd rather see them keep the line moving getting more than four guys to the plate per inning. Start a rally for petes sake. Solo shots aren't going to win you to many games. Not against good teams anyways.

.

good thing the bullpen was rested

.MLB.com/Marlins

B.O.L.O for the mental case using the name Alex..He was banned from the Marlins MLB Blog using the name SHARP_STEEL_SPIKES,for constant abusive language and threatening other posters with violence. He has used various names and should be considered deranged.

Flagstafffishfan

Like I said Cy Young Rodriguez!

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