Colorado Rockies (65-50) vs. Miami Marlins (54-60)

MLB: Saturday, August 12th, 7:10 PM ET @ Marlins Park

Line: Colorado Rockies -109/Miami Marlins -101 Total: 9 (Image from USA Today Sports)

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The Marlins took game 1 of the series with the Rockies 6-3 on Friday with a 3 run 8th and 11 hits total. The Marlins will finish out the series with the Rockies on Saturday and Sunday before playing the Giants at home beginning on Monday. The Rockies will shift to a new NL East opponent on Monday as they begin a 4 game set with the Braves.

The Marlins will look to lock down the series win with Justin Nicolino on the mound. The 25 year old lefty has seen time in the majors over the course of 3 seasons with Miami, but will be making his first start in the bigs since June 24th. In 5 starts and 6 appearances this year, totally 20 1/3 IP, Nicolino is 0-1 with a 5.31 ERA. He has made 14 starts this season for Triple-A, and has posted a 5-5 record and 3.19 ERA. His last major league start came against the Cubs allowing 3 runs, 2 earned, on 7 hits in just 4 innings. Nicolino has never faced the Rockies, and only Jonathan Lucroy has faced the lefty. The catcher is 2 for 6 with an RBI against him. The bottom half of the Marlins lineup had a solid night on Friday as Derek Dietrich (2 for 3, 2 Rs) and Tomas Telis (2 for 4) combined for 3 RBis. Giancarlo Stanton hit his 40th homerun of the year, a solo shot in the 6th.

Looking to bounce back from their loss in the opener, the Rockies turn to Jeff Hoffman. After a rough July, Hoffman has put together back to back solid outings in August. Over his last 2 starts, his ERA is just 2.08 in 13 IP. Overall, he is 6-3 with a 5.03 ERA in 14 starts and 15 appearences. His last start came against the weak offense of the Phillies when he lasted 7 innings and allowed 1 run on 4 hits. No one in the Marlins lineup has faced Hoffman. Nolan Arenado hit his 26th homerun on Friday, a 2 run shot in the 3rd, to reach the 100 RBI mark before any other player this season. Gerardo Parra also went deep, his 9th of the year.

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The Marlins managed limit the very competent Rockies lineup to just 3 runs on Friday and put up 3 late runs to battle to a victory, but tonight’s matchup does not favor the Marlins as it did last night. Over the course of the season, the Marlins have not hit nearly as well at home as they have on the road, but have pitched better. The Rockies take an offensive hit in road games, but likewise pitch much better while away. This is to be expected given the ballparks these two teams play in, but Hoffman’s splits go a bit beyond the Coors Field skew. He is 4-1 in road games with a 3.61 ERA in 6 starts this year, and 2-2 with a 6.15 ERA in 8 starts and 9 games at home. Nicolino has struggled all year at the big league level and will be making his first start in almost 2 months. Hoffman has look reborn in August and will be looking to continue that trend on Saturday. I’m picking the Rockies to take game 2 in Miami.

  John’s Pick: Colorado Rockies