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Marlins @ Expos 4/13 7:05 PM EDT


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Red-hot Marlins head to San Juan

Florida (5-1) at Montreal (2-4), Tuesday at 7:05 p.m. ET

 

SAN JUAN -- Sweeping the Phillies improved the Marlins record to 5-1, but manager Jack McKeon says there is no letting up.

"We're very demanding," McKeon said. "We expect to win every night." The defending World Series champions carry a four-game winning streak into San Juan, P.R., where they begin a three-game series with the Expos on Tuesday.

 

Florida is on the road the next nine games.

 

The Marlins took 2-of-3 from the Expos in the opening series of the season.

 

The secret to the Marlins' success is simple. Strong starting pitching is the strength of the club, and thus far they've had six straight quality starts. Josh Beckett gave up one unearned run in seven innings while striking out 11 in Florida's 3-1 win over the Phillies on Sunday.

 

Brad Penny is scheduled to face Claudio Vargas in the series opener. Penny pitched effectively in the team's only loss, giving up three runs in seven innings to the Expos in the second game of the season.

 

Pitching matchup

 

FLA: RHP Brad Penny

0-1, 3.86 in 2004

0-1, 3.86 in 2004 vs. MON

10-3, 2.37 lifetime vs. MON

 

MON: RHP Claudio Vargas

1-0, 0.00 in 2004

1-0, 0.00 vs. FLA in 2004

2-2, 5.58 lifetime vs. FLA

 

Players to watch: Miguel Cabrera has homered in two straight games, giving him three on the season. Cabrera is 1-for-5 with a double lifetime against the right-hander Vargas. ... Juan Pierre is 6-for-11 (.545) versus Vargas.

 

Quotable: "Playing in Puerto Rico is no different than playing in South Amboy (N.J.) or Lincoln, Neb. Actually, I like going to Puerto Rico, I have a lot of friends there from when I managed there." -- Jack McKeon, who managed Winter League ball in P.R.

 

On the Internet

Gameday Audio

Gameday

 

On television

FLA: No TV

MON: No TV

 

On radio

FLA: 560 WQAM, 1140 WQBA AM (Espa?ol)

MON: Team 990-AM, CKOO 98.5 FM (French)

 

Quick hits: Montreal's Orlando Cabrera is 3-for-34 (.088) lifetime against Penny. But Cabrera's last at-bat was a home run off the Marlins right-hander last week. Jose Vidro is 12-for-36 (.333) against Penny. ... The Marlins were 38-43 on the road last year. ... Tommy Phelps got out of an eighth-inning Sunday jam by striking out Jim Thome and getting Pat Burrell to fly out to center. Thome is 0-for-4 with a walk and three strikeouts versus Phelps. Beckett, who struck out 11 on Sunday, was one shy of his career best of 12 strikeouts. He did that against the Expos, on July 21, 2002. Twice before Beckett struck out 11 (April 23, 2002 vs. Houston and Sept. 14, 2003 vs. Atlanta).

 

On deck

Monday, off day

Wednesday, Marlins at Expos in San Juan, P.R., 7:05 p.m. ET

Thursday, Marlins at Expos in San Juan, P.R., 2:35 p.m. ET

Friday, Marlins at Braves, 7:35 p.m. ET

Saturday, Marlins at Braves, 7:05 p.m. ET

Sunday, Marlins at Braves, 1:05 p.m. ET

 

Joe Frisaro is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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vs

--

Brad Penny(0-1, 3.86) against Claudio Vargas(1-0, 0.00)

 

On television:

Marlins station: none

 

On radio:

Marlins station: Sports radio/WQAM 560 AM; WQBA 1140 AM Spanish

 

On Webcast:

Ramp and Co......

 

Ramp's prediction: Marlins have fun in the sandbox and win 8-2

 

 

BRAD PENNY CAREER VS. EXPOS

 

 

Pitcher

G

GS

CG

ShO

IP

H

R

 

ER

HR

BB

K

W

L

Hd

S

BS

 

ERA

 

 

Brad Penny

0

0

0

0

0

0

 

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

 

0

0.00

 

 

 

EXPOS BATTERS CAREER VS. BRAD PENNY

 

Batter

PA

AB

H

 

2B

3B

HR

RBI

SB

CS

BB

K

TB

 

DP

SLG

OBP

OPS

AVG

 

 

Jose Vidro

39

36

 

12

3

0

0

1

0

1

2

1

 

15

2

.417

.368

.785

.333

 

 

Brad Wilkerson

33

 

29

9

2

1

1

1

1

0

3

 

6

16

1

.552

.394

.946

.310

 

 

Brian Schneider

 

20

16

4

0

0

0

2

0

0

 

4

1

4

0

.250

.400

.650

.250

 

 

 

Jamey Carroll

12

12

3

1

0

0

1

 

1

0

0

1

4

1

.333

.250

.583

 

.250

 

 

Ron Calloway

9

9

2

0

0

0

 

1

0

0

0

4

2

1

.222

.222

 

.444

.222

 

 

Tony Batista

5

5

1

0

0

 

0

0

0

0

0

0

1

0

.200

 

.200

.400

.200

 

 

Carl Everett

7

6

1

0

 

0

1

2

0

0

1

3

4

0

 

.667

.286

.952

.167

 

 

Peter Bergeron

20

18

2

 

0

0

0

0

1

0

2

5

2

 

0

.111

.200

.311

.111

 

 

Orlando Cabrera

39

34

 

3

0

0

1

1

1

0

4

2

 

6

0

.176

.184

.361

.088

 

 

Terrmel Sledge

0

 

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

 

0

0

0

.000

.000

.000

.000

 

 

Juan Rivera

 

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

 

0

0

0

0

.000

.000

.000

.000

 

 

 

Luis Lopez

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

 

0

0

0

0

0

0

.000

.000

.000

 

.000

 

 

Nick Johnson

0

0

0

0

0

0

 

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

.000

.000

 

.000

.000

 

 

Scott Hodges

0

0

0

0

0

 

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

.000

 

.000

.000

.000

 

 

Andy Fox

0

0

0

0

 

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

 

.000

.000

.000

.000

 

 

Einar Diaz

0

0

0

 

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

 

0

.000

.000

.000

.000

 

 

 

CLAUDIO VARGAS CAREER VS. MARLINS

 

Pitcher

 

G

GS

CG

ShO

IP

H

R

ER

HR

 

BB

K

W

L

Hd

S

BS

ERA

 

 

 

Claudio Vargas

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

 

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

 

0.00

 

 

 

MARLINS BATTERS CAREER VS. CLAUDIO VARGAS

 

Batter

PA

AB

H

2B

 

3B

HR

RBI

SB

CS

BB

K

TB

DP

 

SLG

OBP

OPS

AVG

 

 

Juan Pierre

11

11

6

 

2

1

0

0

2

1

0

1

10

 

0

.909

.545

1.455

.545

 

 

Jeff Conine

3

2

 

1

1

0

0

0

0

0

1

0

 

2

0

1.000

.667

1.667

.500

 

 

Hee Seop Choi

3

 

2

1

0

0

0

1

0

0

1

 

1

1

0

.500

.667

1.167

.500

 

 

Luis Castillo

 

10

9

4

0

0

0

1

1

0

 

0

0

4

0

.444

.444

.889

.444

 

 

 

Mike Lowell

10

8

2

1

0

1

3

 

0

0

1

1

6

0

.750

.300

1.050

 

.250

 

 

Alex Gonzalez

8

8

2

1

0

1

 

1

0

0

0

1

6

0

.750

.250

 

1.000

.250

 

 

Miguel Cabrera

5

5

1

1

0

 

0

1

0

0

0

1

2

1

.400

 

.200

.600

.200

 

 

Mike Redmond

2

2

0

0

 

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

 

.000

.000

.000

.000

 

 

Abraham Nunez

0

0

0

 

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

 

0

.000

.000

.000

.000

 

 

Mike Mordecai

1

1

 

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

1

 

0

0

.000

.000

.000

.000

 

 

Lenny Harris

0

 

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

 

0

0

0

.000

.000

.000

.000

 

 

Damion Easley

 

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

 

0

0

0

0

.000

.000

.000

.000

 

 

 

Wil Cordero

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

 

0

0

0

0

0

0

.000

.000

.000

 

.000

 

 

Ramon Castro

6

5

0

0

0

0

 

0

0

0

1

2

0

0

.000

.167

 

.167

.000

 

 

c/o espn.com

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Get the no TV whining over with now. They haven't announced a deal. Somebody could try and tap Deportes 13, but we don't know their schedule.

 

It costs too much money to do these games on TV, the stadium doesn't have the infrastructure, and the PR rightsholder has a deathgrip on rights and the pool.

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Upcoming MLB.tv Marlins schedule:

 

04/13 7:05pm Florida Marlins @ Montreal Expos No .TV

04/14 7:05pm Florida Marlins @ Montreal Expos No .TV

04/15 2:35pm Florida Marlins @ Montreal Expos No .TV

04/16 7:35pm Florida Marlins @ Atlanta Braves 350K

04/17 7:05pm Florida Marlins @ Atlanta Braves 350K

04/18 1:05pm Florida Marlins @ Atlanta Braves 350K

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I heard Hiram Bithorn has been renovated to give it the exact dimensions of Olympic Stadium in Montreal. Both Olympic Stadium and Hiram Bithorn have the FieldTurf system which is new for this year. It is that turf that has been used in Tampa for a while now and is very healthy for our players.

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I predict Penny pitches 7 no-hit innings for the win. It would have been a perfect game if a swinging strike three had landed within reasonable distance of Eamon Castro instead of implanted in the skull of Youppi. Juan Pierre contributes on the offense with 27 hits, 1 double, 3 home runs and 70 stolen bases.

 

 

:marlins

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It's being broadcast on Puerto Rico television. But they were unable to reach a deal with FSN Florida to broadcast it. And it's not being shown in Montreal or on Extra Innings or MLB.tv.

 

Read Cape Fish's posts for more details. He keeps us up to date on this stuff.

 

You can catch it on radio though.

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http://sports.yahoo.com/mlb/preview?gid=240413120

 

Brad Penny, who has always done well against the Montreal Expos, looks to avoid losing to them for the second time in a week as he leads the Florida Marlins in the opener of a three-game set.

 

Penny pitched well in a start against Montreal on April 7, allowing four hits and three runs in seven innings. Penny, though, took the loss as the Marlins were defeated 3-2.

 

The right-hander is 10-3 with a 2.37 ERA in 15 career starts against Montreal. He's beaten the Expos more than anyone in the last five seasons.

 

The Marlins, continuing the success they found late last season as World Series champions, have won four straight.

 

``We're very demanding and we expect to win every night,'' Marlins manager Jack McKeon said.

 

World Series MVP Josh Beckett allowed two hits and struck out 11 in seven innings to help the Marlins complete a three-game sweep of the Philadelphia Phillies on Sunday, beating them 3-1.

 

Armando Benitez allowed one hit and threw 25 pitches in the ninth for his fifth save and fourth in as many days.

 

Montreal has struggled to score runs thus far.

 

Manager Frank Robinson again complained about his offense following Sunday's 4-1 loss to the New York Mets.

 

``We are wasting very good performances by our pitchers,'' Robinson said.

 

Robinson added that Monday's day off could help his team focus for this series.

 

The Expos collected just five hits Sunday off Tom Glavine. Montreal has scored only 10 runs and is batting .198 in six games.

 

``We have to start hitting, because our pitchers need our support,'' Expos second baseman Jose Vidro said.

 

STANDINGS (through April 11): Marlins - 1st place, NL East. Expos - 4th place, 3 GB, NL East.

 

MARLINS PROBABLE STARTER: Penny (0-1, 3.86 ERA). Penny gave up two home runs in his season opener after surrendering just 21 in 196 1-3 innings in 2003.

 

EXPOS PROBABLE STARTER: Claudio Vargas (1-0, 0.00 ERA). The right-hander pitched six scoreless innings against Florida in his season opener, winning the matchup with Penny. Vargas is 2-2 with a 5.59 ERA in four career starts against Florida.

 

OFFENSIVE LEADERS: Marlins - Mike Lowell, .400 avg. and 1 SB; Miguel Cabrera and Hee Seop Choi, 3 HRs; Choi, 6 RBIs; Miguel Cabrera, 5 runs. Expos - Orlando Cabrera, .320 avg.; Orlando Cabrera, Vidro and Carl Everett, 1 HR; Vidro, 5 RBIs; Vidro, Peter Bergeron and Everett, 2 runs; Ron Calloway, 1 SB.

 

SEASON SERIES: Marlins, 2-1.

 

STREAKS AND NOTES: Marlins - OF Juan Pierre is batting .545 (6-for-11) with a triple and two doubles against RHP Vargas. ... OF Brian Banks hit a home run in his only career at-bat against Vargas. ... Florida's starting pitchers are batting .500 (6-for-12). Expos - 3B Tony Batista is batting .091 (2-for-22) with four strikeouts. ... SS Orlando Cabrera is a career .088 hitter (3-for-34) against RHP Penny. ... OF Bergeron is batting .111 (2-for-18) with five strikeouts against Penny.

 

ROAD/HOME RECORDS: Marlins - 0-0 on the road; Expos - 1-2 at home.

 

INJURIES: Marlins - RHP A.J. Burnett (elbow), 15-day DL; RHP Tim Spooneybarger (elbow), 60-day DL. Expos - IF Scott Hodges (quadriceps), 15-day DL; IF Nick Johnson (back), 15-day DL; RHP Tony Armas Jr. (shoulder), 15-day DL; LHP Joey Eischen (elbow), 15-day DL; RHP Dan Smith (shoulder), 60-day DL.

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04/09/2004 8:28 PM ET

Notes: Thumbs-up for new park

Hiram Bithhorn Stadium renovations completed

By Bill Ladson / MLB.com

 

 

SAN JUAN -- Around 2:00 p.m. on Friday, Montreal Expos manager Frank Robinson, catcher Brian Schneider, president Tony Tavares, outfielder Brad Wilkerson and infielder Jamey Carroll were surveying Hiram Bithorn Stadium with Murray Cook, the head of groundskeeping for Major League Baseball.

The reason? San Juan's municipal government spent $8 million this offseason renovating the stadium. All the work was completed on Thursday.

 

One of the more notable changes is the eight-foot outfield wall, which has been moved back to the same dimensions as Olympic Stadium -- 325 feet down the lines, 375 to the power alleys and 404 to straightaway center field.

 

Last season, the stadium was a pitcher's nightmare. It was 313 feet down the left-field line, 400 feet to straightaway center and 315 down the right-field line.

 

FieldTurf has replaced the AstroTurf and there has been significant upgrades made in the clubhouse and on score and video boards.

 

After looking over everything, Robinson came away impressed with the improvements. His only wish was that the "batter's eye" in center field was a little bit taller and wider.

 

"It's a tremendous improvement. This is the same type of field like we have at Olympic Stadium," Robinson said. "I still think the ball is going to travel, but as far as the measurements are concerned, it will be a legitimate distance. Every ball that's popped up in the air, I will no longer have to hold my breath.

 

"I wished they improved the batter's eye. ... I don't think you could get too wide with the batter's eye. There is a lot of space out there that hitters will be looking at, especially during day games. It will be troublesome."

 

Schneider, who is the player representative for the Expos, had no complaints about the new facilities at Hiram Bithorn Stadium.

 

"The clubhouse looks awesome and the field looks awesome, Schneider said. "The pitchers are happy to see the fences are back and the turf is not real fast. Overall, I think they did a great job."

 

Cook said the renovations took a long time to complete because they wanted to make sure the details were followed to the letter.

 

"We wanted to make sure the scoreboard was working properly, [we were] getting the batter's eye up and getting the right material for the batter's eye. [We were] checking all the lights. We were able to pull it all together," Cook said.

 

No need to worry: According to Robinson, outfielder Peter Bergeron felt "a twinge right above his right elbow" after checking his swing on Wednesday against the Florida Marlins.

 

Bergeron was spotted in the locker room with ice wrapped on the arm after Thursday's game.

 

He was well enough, however, to play in Friday's game against the New York Mets.

 

"I was just putting some ice on it as a precaution. I just want to make sure it doesn't turn into a problem," Bergeron said.

 

Hitting problems: Before Friday's game, Robinson admitted that he was concerned about Wilkerson, who was hitless in his first nine at-bats of the season.

 

"He's striking out quite a bit," Robinson said. "When you are not hitting and you are striking out a lot, it's very noticeable. With him in the fifth spot in the lineup, we have to get production out of him."

 

Late inning guys: Besides Rocky Biddle, the Expos have three other pitchers -- Luis Ayala, Chad Bentz and Chad Cordero -- who have experience as closers.

 

Robinson feels that having four closers is a great luxury to have in the late innings of a game.

 

"Guys who have closed have a different mentality," Robinson said. "They are used to being in pressure situations, so you know they can handle it without going to pieces," Robinson said. "To have those guys starting in the sixth or seventh inning and working toward Biddle, it's kind of a security blanket for me."

 

Did you know? Going into Friday's action, the Expos and Toronto Blue Jays were tied for the fewest runs scored in baseball with six.

 

Bill Ladson is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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