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National League Preview from The Sports Network



Friday, August 10th (All times eastern)

Los Angeles Dodgers (60-52) at Miami Marlins (51-61), 7:10 p.m.

Probable Starting Pitchers: Los Angeles - Clayton Kershaw (9-6, 2.88) Miami - Mark Buehrle (9-10, 3.70)

(Sports Network) - Reigning National League Cy Young Award winner Clayton Kershaw can reach double-digit wins for the third straight season tonight when the Los Angeles Dodgers head to Miami to open a three-game series with the Marlins at Marlins Park.

Tonight's contest also features a return to South Beach for Dodgers third baseman Hanley Ramirez, who spent the last five-plus years in Miami before being sent to Los Angeles in a trade just before the non-waiver deadline.

"They are always going to be a part of my family," Ramirez said of the Marlins. "That's where I spent the last seven years. Hopefully I've got more than that in the big leagues. For now, I turn the page and move forward with this team."

Kershaw, who was 21-5 with a stingy 2.28 earned run average in 33 starts for the Dodgers en route to the postseason honors in 2011, has won two straight to get to nine wins in the follow-up season, including a 3-1 defeat of the Chicago Cubs on Aug. 4.

In that game, the 24-year-old Dallas native allowed three hits and a run in seven innings. One start before, he went the nine-inning distance in a 4-0 win at San Francisco, allowing five hits and walking one while recording seven strikeouts.

The southpaw's last loss came back on July 24 in St. Louis, when he was touched for right runs on seven hits and three walks in 5 2/3 innings of an 8-2 loss.

Kershaw last faced the Marlins on May 29, 2011 and was an 8-0 winner after again going the distance and striking out 10 while walking one and allowing just two hits.

He's opposed by fellow southpaw Mark Buehrle, who's failed in four straight attempts to reach double-digit wins for the 12th consecutive season.

The 33-year-old improved to 9-8 on the season with a 2-1 defeat of Washington on July 14, but has since gone 0-2 with a pair of no-decisions in four starts - all Marlins losses.

He gave up four runs on seven hits in six innings of his most recent outing, a 10-7 Miami loss at Washington.

Buehrle is 3-1 in four lifetime starts against the Dodgers while with the Chicago White Sox, posting a 1.50 earned run average across 30 full innings.

On Thursday in New York, R.A. Dickey went the distance and Andres Torres fell a single shy of the cycle as the Mets avoided a sweep with a 6-1 decision over Miami in the finale of a three-game set.

Justin Ruggiano's solo homer was the lone output for the Marlins. Jose Reyes saw his 26-game hit streak come to an end after an 0-for-4 performance as Miami completed an 11-game road trip with a 4-7 record.

"Jose, he had a great run. Hopefully he makes another one happen pretty soon," Marlins manager Ozzie Guillen said.

Josh Johnson (7-8) took the loss, charged with eight hits and three runs over six full frames.

On Wednesday in Los Angeles, Matt Kemp hit a three-run homer, Shane Victorino scored three times, and the Dodgers avoided a sweep with a 6-4 win over the Colorado Rockies.

Kemp went 3-for-4 while Victorino also had three hits and added an RBI for the Dodgers, who concluded a 4-5 homestand. They trail the NL West-leading Giants by 1 1/2 games.

Chad Billingsley (8-9) won his fourth straight start, allowing four runs on seven hits over 6 1/3 innings. He walked two and struck out five.

"My command wasn't quite there but I was able to make quality pitches," Billingsley said. "Our offense played great tonight."

This is the first series of 2012 between the teams, which split six meetings last season. The Marlins won four of six games against the Dodgers in 2010.

08/10 14:37:12 ET