Florida Marlins Team Report - August 1

(Sports Network) - Carl Pavano tries to win his third straight start and help the new-look Florida Marlins from avoiding a three-game sweep at the hands of the last-place Montreal Expos today at Pro Player Stadium.

The Marlins were in need of a boost considering they lost 9-0 Friday night and 8-5 last night to fall 5 1/2 games behind the front-running Atlanta Braves in the NL East.

Even a pinch-hit homer from new acquisition Paul Lo Duca couldn't help the Marlins snap their slide against the Expos. Montreal has won five straight over Florida, including a three-game sweep in Canada last weekend.

Pavano allowed two runs over eight innings in a win against the Phillies on Tuesday. The righthander, who pitched for the Expos from 1998 until 2002 when he was traded to the Marlins, is 5-1 all-time against Montreal. He last faced the Expos on April 15 in Puerto Rico, tossing seven shutout innings and allowing three hits, one walk and three strikeouts. He has allowed a .212 batting average in his career against the Expos. He's given up two home runs in 56 1/3 career innings against Montreal.

Lo Duca smacked a two-run pinch-hit homer in his first at-bat for the Marlins, who have dropped two straight following a four-game winning streak. Lo Duca was obtained in a six-player trade with Los Angeles on Friday that saw starting pitcher Brad Penny, first baseman Hee Seop Choi and minor league pitcher Bill Murphy head to the Dodgers. In exchange, the Marlins acquired the veteran Lo Duca, outfielder Juan Encarnacion and reliever Guillermo Mota.

The Marlins were also major players before baseball's trade deadline passed on Saturday as they made two more deals to bolster their pitching staff. Florida obtained starting pitcher Ismael Valdez from San Diego and also acquired reliever Rudy Seanez in a trade with the Royals. In exchange for Valdez, who will become the team's fifth starter, the Marlins sent minor league righthander Travis Chick to the Padres. Florida also unloaded disgruntled outfielder Abraham Nunez in the deal that brought Seanez to Miami.

Florida has gone 12-4 in the last 16 matchups against Montreal at Pro Player Stadium.

By The Source
Aug 1, 2004
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