for this game

Olsen, Baker carry red-hot Marlins past fading Astros

Sep 19, 2008 - 3:25 AM By Christopher Stock PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

MIAMI (Ticker) -- John Baker drove in four runs and Scott Olsen pitched seven solid innings as the Florida Marlins ran their season-high winning streak to eight games with an 8-1 victory over the Houston Astros on Thursday.

Rookie center fielder Cameron Maybin reached base five times with four singles and a walk and scored a pair of runs in his first start for the Marlins. Maybin was a key piece in last year's trade with the Detroit Tigers that sent over Miguel Cabrera and Dontrelle Willis.

"I showed a little bit of my potential," Maybin said. "I still have got to show some power. I just tried to go out and help, especially leading off."

The Marlins completed a three-game sweep of the Astros for the first time since 1996, outscoring them 27-4 in the series. After winning 14 of 15, the Astros have lost five in a row since Hurricane Ike ripped through the Houston area.

"Everybody is real down. It's not good," Astros All-Star first baseman Lance Berkman said. "We had a real chance to be in the race and now we are on the fringe of the race and we haven't hit, pitched, or fielded well. It's just been a team-wide collapse."

Olsen (8-10) allowed one run, three hits, and one walk. He struck out seven batters for the first time since he fanned seven on June 12 against Philadelphia.

"Ollie was outstanding. He really was," Marlins manager Fredi Gonzalez said. "This is back-to-back outings for him that have been solid. Just add a couple more and finish the season strong."

After Lance Berkman's RBI groundout in the first inning gave the Astros a 1-0 lead, Baker delivered a two-run single in the second through a steady rain off Astros starter Alberto Arias (1-1). Arias walked the bases loaded and Baker singled to center with two outs, staking Olsen to a 2-1 lead.

The game was delayed several times over the first four innings as the grounds crew tended to the rain-soaked infield.

"With the rain and all the stuff that was going on, with a little break in the action - in that situation I'm trying to hit the ball in the middle of the field and, luckily for me, it got up the middle," Baker said.

The Marlins added two more runs in the fourth with back-to-back RBI doubles by Baker and Jorge Cantu. Baker added another RBI double in the sixth, scoring Maybin. Two batters later, Mike Jacobs singled home Baker to give Florida a 6-1 advantage.

"It's nice to have someone like Maybin on first base," Baker said. "I feel he could score on a single from first base the way he runs out there."

Olsen cruised to his second straight victory after a six-game losing skid, retiring 18 of the final 20 batters he faced.

"My changeup was really good," Olsen said. "I threw some good sliders, but they just didn't swing at them. I just pounded the strike zone and I didn't feel I was behind in the count at all."

Cody Ross capped off the scoring for the Marlins with a two-run double off the left field scoreboard in the eighth.

Arias struggled in his second start since being recalled from Class AAA Round Rock. The righthander allowed two runs and five hits in 2 2/3 innings, struggling with the Marlins lineup and the rain.

"I couldn't control the ball because my hand was so wet," Arias said. "I couldn't make my pitches. I tried to throw a strike, but every ball went away."

Houston has been outscored 38-5 during the five-game losing streak. The skid, which began after Ike forced the postponement of a pair of home games against the Chicago Cubs on September 12-13, has dropped the Astros into a tie with the Marlins (80-72) in the National League wild card race, five games behind the New York Mets (85-67).








  • NL
    FINAL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    HOUSTON 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 4 1
    FLORIDA 0 2 0 2 0 2 0 2 x 8 14 0 (FINAL)

    BATTERIES: HOU - ALBERTO ARIAS, CHRIS SAMPSON (3RD), WESLEY WRIGHT (5TH), DOUG
    BROCAIL (6TH), GEOFF GEARY (7TH), LATROY HAWKINS (8TH) AND
    J.R. TOWLES, HUMBERTO QUINTERO (8TH)

    Sep 18 10:14 PM


  • NL
    AT FLORIDA - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY CODY ROSS SCORED JORGE CANTU AND DAN UGGLA.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, C ROSS ON SECOND, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: HOUSTON 1
    FLORIDA 8 BOTTOM, 8TH
    DUE UP FOR FLORIDA: A AMEZAGA (.262, 0-FOR-3, BB)

    Astros 1, Marlins 8  Bot 8, 0 OutsSep 18 10:03 PM


  • NL
    AT FLORIDA - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY MIKE JACOBS SCORED JOHN BAKER.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, M JACOBS ON FIRST, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: HOUSTON 1
    FLORIDA 6 BOTTOM, 6TH
    DUE UP FOR FLORIDA: D UGGLA (.263, 1-FOR-3)

    Astros 1, Marlins 6  Bot 6, 0 OutsSep 18 9:14 PM


  • NL
    AT FLORIDA - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY JOHN BAKER SCORED CAMERON MAYBIN.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, J BAKER ON SECOND, 0 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: HOUSTON 1
    FLORIDA 5 BOTTOM, 6TH
    DUE UP FOR FLORIDA: J CANTU (.277, 1-FOR-2, HBP, RBI)

    Astros 1, Marlins 5  Bot 6, 0 OutsSep 18 9:10 PM


  • NL
    AT FLORIDA - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY JORGE CANTU SCORED JOHN BAKER.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, J CANTU ON SECOND, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: HOUSTON 1
    FLORIDA 4 BOTTOM, 4TH
    DUE UP FOR FLORIDA: M JACOBS (.248, 1-FOR-2)

    Astros 1, Marlins 4  Bot 4, 0 OutsSep 18 8:32 PM


  • NL
    AT FLORIDA - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY JOHN BAKER SCORED CAMERON MAYBIN.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, J BAKER ON SECOND, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: HOUSTON 1
    FLORIDA 3 BOTTOM, 4TH
    DUE UP FOR FLORIDA: J CANTU (.276, 0-FOR-1, HBP)

    Astros 1, Marlins 3  Bot 4, 0 OutsSep 18 8:29 PM
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    McTool Added 5 roots

    Astros 1, Marlins 2  Bot 3, 0 OutsSep 18 8:08 PM


  • NL
    AT FLORIDA - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY JOHN BAKER SCORED CODY ROSS AND ALFREDO AMEZAGA.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, J BAKER ON FIRST, C MAYBIN ON THIRD, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: HOUSTON 1
    FLORIDA 2 BOTTOM, 2ND
    DUE UP FOR FLORIDA: J CANTU (.277, 0-FOR-0, HBP)

    Astros 1, Marlins 2  Bot 2, 0 OutsSep 18 7:53 PM


  • NL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    HOUSTON 1 1 1 0
    FLORIDA 0 0 0 (BOT 1)

    CURRENT PITCHERS: HOU - ALBERTO ARIAS
    FLA - SCOTT OLSEN

    DUE UP FOR FLORIDA: C MAYBIN (.500, 0 HR, 1 RBI)
    J BAKER (.280, 5 HR, 23 RBI)
    J CANTU (.277, 28 HR, 90 RBI)

    Astros 1, Marlins 0  Bot 1, 0 OutsSep 18 7:17 PM
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    GREGnKY Added 5 roots

    Astros vs. MarlinsSep 18 6:19 PM
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    Yankee82 Added 5 roots

    Astros vs. MarlinsSep 18 3:51 PM
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    Lemonman Added 5 roots

    Astros vs. MarlinsSep 18 12:10 AM