Stumbling Brewers play host to Marlins

( - The Milwaukee Brewers are picking a bad time to stumble and look to get back on track Monday in the opener of a four-game series versus the Miami Marlins at Miller Park.

Milwaukee slipped to five games off the NL Central lead and is also a half- game behind in the wild card race.

The Brewers have lost 14 of their last 17 games, and lost three of four contests versus the NL Central-leading St. Louis Cardinals over the weekend. In Sunday's 9-1 beat down by the Cards, Adam Wainwright tossed a gem and held the Brewers to a run in a complete game effort for his 17th win (17-9).

Jimmy Nelson got the start for Milwaukee and was touched for four runs in five innings, dropping to 2-7 on the year.

"It's very frustrating for all of us," said Nelson. "All of us, though, still have a lot of confidence and we'll get things back together."

Carlos Gomez drove in the lone with an RBI single in the ninth inning.

Milwaukee will also host Cincinnati on this 11-game homestand and Yovani Gallardo is set to take the mound Monday. Gallardo is 8-8 with a 3.43 earned run average and 0-2 in his past three outings. He allowed seven runs -- five earned -- and eight hits in five innings of a 7-1 loss to the Cubs on Tuesday.

Gallardo has struggled at home this season to the tune of a 2-5 record and a 4.14 ERA in 14 starts. The right-hander has made seven appearances in his career against the Marlins, going a perfect 5-0 with a 1.12 ERA.

The Marlins still have their sights set on a postseason berth and are 4 1/2 games behind in the wild card race. They will open a 10-game road trip Monday in Brew City and won two of three meetings with Atlanta this weekend.

Miami posted a 4-0 win in Sunday's rubber match and was led by Brad Hand's six shutout innings.

"I was just trying to throw early strikes, get early contact," Hand said. "I was trying to get ahead in the count and pitch to contact."

Jarrod Saltalamacchia drove in two runs, Christian Yelich went 2-for-4 with a run scored and both Donovan Solano and Marcell Ozuna had an RBI for the Marlins.

Miami will also visit Philadelphia and New York (Mets) on the trek and hopes Brad Penny can keep them in the win column when he toes the rubber Monday. Penny is 1-1 with a 6.61 earned run average and lasted only three innings in last Tuesday's 8-6 loss to the Mets. He gave up four runs and seven hits.

Penny, a right-hander, is 3-3 with a 5.07 ERA in eight career starts against the Brewers.

Milwaukee won two of three matchups with Miami from May 23-25 at Marlins Park and went 5-1 against the Marlins last season.