Unbalanced lineup frustrating for Marlins
Offense scuffles despite Stanton, Gordon providing All-Star production
MIAMI -- The way the Marlins see it, the lack of run production simply doesn't make sense, considering the amount of talent in their lineup. The club has the Major League leader in home runs and RBIs in Giancarlo Stanton and speedster Dee Gordon paces the game in hits.
Still, scoring runs is an ongoing issue that surfaced once again Wednesday night in a 6-1 loss to the Cardinals at Marlins Park.
Stanton again did his thing, belting an impressive home run while collecting three hits. The slugger has 27 homers and 67 RBIs. Gordon had a single and stole a base, his 25th of the season. He's at 106 hits and hitting .352.
But with runners in scoring position, Miami was 0-for-4 and is hitting .234 in such situations.
"We're not getting the hits when runners are on base, in bigger situations [we're not] putting them together back to back in the same inning," Stanton said. "At the end of the day, we're still getting seven to 10 hits, but it's a matter of how important they are."
Manager Dan Jennings preached the basics after Miami fell to a season-worst 13 games under .500 (30-43).
"It's strictly about the focus and the concentration, no doubt about it," Jennings said. "There's some good hitters up and down this lineup. When teams get into a funk like we're in right now, players try to do a little too much. When you try to do too much, you get away from what you work on during the day. It's 7 o'clock, it can come back and bite you. We're going to have to go back, get our focus back, get the concentration right, stay with the approach that we know works -- especially in this ballpark."
Marlins Park is spacious and not rewarding to power. Stanton, for instance, blistered a single off the top of the wall in right field in the seventh inning. In most parks, it would have been a home run.
While Stanton has 27 homers, the rest of the Marlins have 34.
"We've got to get some traffic in front of the big man, who is absolutely on fire right now, swinging the bat great," Jennings said. "That's strictly it. It's a mindset to do it the approach that you work on before game time, carrying that into the game."