The Milwaukee Brewers will look for their fourth straight strong starting pitching performance on Saturday night when they continue their pivotal four-game series against the visiting Miami Marlins.
In Milwaukee's previous three outings, Brandon Woodruff, Eric Lauer and Corbin Burnes combined toallow 10 hits and strike out 26 batters over 19 scoreless innings. The result was two wins and one loss for the Brewers (84-73), with the lone blemish a result of Avisail Garcia's grand slam in the eighth inning of the Marlins' 4-2 victory on Thursday.
Burnes, the reigning National League Cy Young Award recipient, responded by scattering four hits over eight innings in Milwaukee's 1-0 win over Miami on Friday night.
Garrett Mitchell scored on a sacrifice fly by Rowdy Tellez in the sixth inning for the Brewers, who remained a half-game behind the Philadelphia Phillies (84-72) in the race for the third wild-card spot in the NL. The Phillies posted a 5-1 win in the opener of their doubleheader against the Washington Nationals before the teams' nightcap was postponed due to rain.
"It's been a lot of fun, this is where you want to be at a time like this," Mitchell said of the playoff race to Bally Sports Wisconsin.
Mitchell, who had two of his team's five hits on Friday, is 12-for-23 with three runs in his last nine games.
"Mitch had a really nice game and put some good swings on a tough pitcher (Sandy Alcantara)," Milwaukee manager Craig Counsell said.
Brewers left-hander Aaron Ashby (2-10, 4.50 ERA) will look to follow in Burnes' massive footsteps on Saturday night. Ashby has turned in a pair of no-decisions since returning from a stint on the 15-day injured list because of left shoulder inflammation.
Ashby, 24, enjoyed considerable success in his lone career meeting with the Marlins. He struck out eight without allowing a hit over four scoreless innings to secure a save in the Brewers' 7-3 win on May 15.
Miami (65-92) will turn to right-hander Edward Cabrera (6-4, 3.15) to take the mound on Saturday night.
Cabrera, 24, has been taken deep in each of his last six outings. He has allowed eight homers in that stretch (30 1/3 innings) and posted a 3-3 record over that span.
Cabrera permitted a two-run homer in the first and surrendered three runs on six hits over 3 2/3 innings of a 6-1 setback to the Nationals on Sunday. He exited after sustaining a right ankle strain, however he reported no issues during an 18-pitch bullpen session on Thursday and is ready for the start.
Cabrera will be facing the Brewers for the first time in his young career.
Light-hitting Lewin Diaz had two of the five hits for the Marlins, who struggled to register any semblance of offense until the late going on Friday.
"In the ninth we kind of get something going and get a couple chances there -- we were just unable to get that hit," Miami manager Don Mattingly said.
--Field Level Media