Houston Astros (28-12) at Miami Marlins (14-24), May 17, 2017, 11:10 AM CDT
Radio: KBME 790 AM, La Nueva 94.1 FM
Marlins SBNation Blog: Fish Stripes
RHP Lance McCullers Jr. (3-1, 2.98 ERA, 1.12 WHIP) vs. RHP Jose Urena (1-1, 1.98 ERA, 1.17 WHIP)
The Astros go for the sweep in an early matinee game today. The 11:10 AM start time (Houston time) is likely to be the earliest start for a game this season, and hopefully the Astros will give us something to cheer about on our lunch breaks.
After some inconsistency in April (4.34 ERA), Lance McCullers Jr. has been stellar so far in May (0.93 ERA). This start figures to be an emotional one for McCullers, who was close friends with Marlins ace Jose Fernandez who died in a boating accident in September last year.
This year, McCullers has been using the same kind of glove Jose Fernandez used with Jose’s name etched in the side. It will be the first time McCullers has pitched in Miami since Jose’s death.
The Marlins will send 25 year-old Jose Urena to the mound for his third start of the season after beginning 2017 in the bullpen. Urena only allowed 1 hit (no runs) over 6 innings in his first start against the Mets, and gave up 2 ER over 6 innings in his second start against the Braves. He will try to build on those outings and not revert to his 2016 form, when he had a 5.68 ERA as a starter.
It will be a difficult task though, as the Astros offense has been rolling, averaging 6.4 runs per game in May.