« Crazy 8th: Mike Redmond dissects decision-making in decisive inning | Main | Mike Redmond discusses A.J. Burnett window treatment (w/video) »

Cishek returns to site of last blown save; Ozuna moves up to No. 2 spot

PHILADELPHIA -- Marlins closer Steve Cishek still has vivid memories of the last time he was charged with a blown save. It was right here at Citizens Bank Park -- on June 4 of last season -- when he was brought in to protect a 2-1 lead in the 10th.

Cishek gave up a leadoff home run to John Mayberry, and the Phillies went on to prevail in the 11th. Since then, Cishek has reeled off 31 consecutive saves, the longest active streak in the majors.

“I remember what pitch it was and everything,” Cishek said. “It was a slider. It just didn’t slide. It just kind of floated there. It felt good out of my had. Obviously, it was exactly where he (Mayberry) wanted it because he hammered it.”

Cishek returns to the site of his last failure having not pitched since April 5. He’s made only two appearances this season. As a result, Cishek has tried to keep sharp by throwing pre-game bullpen sessions, as he did Friday before the Marlins opened a three-game series against the Phillies.

“It’s not the same, but I’m throwing off the mound as much as possible, making sure all the pitches feel good, feel the same,” Cishek said. “I just don’t want to get lazy or complacent. I want to stay sharp.”
As for that last blown save, Cishek said: “It feels like yesterday.”
____________

Marcell Ozuna found his name in an unfamiliar spot on the lineup card when it was posted inside the Marlins' clubhouse on Friday.

Manager Mike Redmond had him in the second spot, behind Christian Yelich. It was the first time Ozuna has batted any higher than the cleanup spot.

"We just flip-flopped it thinking that Ozuna's been swinging the bat well and he has really good numbers in Philly," Redmond explained. "Maybe hitting second will get him a few more fastballs."
____________

Before Thursday, the last time Marlins hitters totaled 17 strikeouts in one game was in 2002 when they faced the Diamondbacks and pitcher Curt Schilling.

Every member of the starting lineup struck out at least once, except for the one player one would least suspect: Preston Wilson. Wilson struck out relentlessly -- even threatened what was then the single-season strikeout record in 2000 -- but managed to avoid being K'd by Schilling or any other Arizona pitcher that day.

"I'll wear that like a badge," Wilson said, laughing.
______________

Wilson will have a new colleague on the FOX Sports Florida broadcast team. The network announced Friday that former big-league pitcher Carl Pavano has been hired to serve as an on-air analyst for Marlins games.

Pavano, a member of the Marlins' 2003 World Series pitching staff, will work select pre and post-game shows. He'll make his debut on Tuesday.

Comments