Zack Greinke will look to extend his unbeaten run at Miller Park -- and match a bit of history in the process -- as the Milwaukee Brewers try to beat the Miami Marlins for the ninth straight time in the opener of a four-game series.
Greinke is 15-0 with a 2.47 earned run average at Miller Park, with the Brewers winning 20 of his 21 regular-season starts there. With a victory tonight, he would join the Yankees' Johnny Allen (1932-33) and LaMarr Hoyt of the White Sox (1980-82) as the only starters in MLB history since 1900 to win each of their first 16 home decisions.
The right-hander will start at home for the first time in five outings, but has carried his success out on the road. Greinke has won four straight decisions, following a three-hit shutout of the White Sox with six innings of two-run, five-hit ball to beat the Reds on Wednesday. It marked Greinke's 12th quality start in 16 outings this year as he improved to 9-2 with a 2.82 ERA.
Greinke, 28, has never lost to the Marlins in his career, going 2-0 with a 4.05 ERA in four games, including three starts.
Greinke will also look to extend Milwaukee's winning streak over Miami. The Brewers won all seven meetings last year to push their series win streak to eight start since their last loss to the Marlins on Sept. 25, 2010 at home.
The Brewers have won three of four since a four-game slide and picked up a series win over the Diamondbacks with Sunday's 2-1 win. Milwaukee capitalized on some sloppy play by Arizona to plate the winning run in the ninth.
Carlos Gomez came on to pinch-run for Aramis Ramirez after he worked a leadoff walk. With one out, Gomez attempted to steal second and catcher Miguel Montero's throw sailed into center. Gerardo Parra then tried to nail Gomez at third, but his throw one-hopped the third baseman and skipped into the stands and Gomez was awarded home.
"Nice break there in the ninth," said Brewers manager Ron Roenicke. "Gomez did a great job with a good jump. When he's out there some things are going to happen. Outstanding ballgame."
Milwaukee might need as many breaks tonight given how Marlins starter Carlos Zambrano has pitched as of late. The right-hander tries to avoid a fourth straight loss tonight, having lost three decisions over a four-start span while pitching to a 7.88 ERA in that time.
Two first-inning errors doomed Zambrano on Tuesday against the Cardinals and one of the miscues came on a throwing error by the pitcher. The defensive miscues led to Zambrano yielding five unearned runs in the frame and though he would keep St. Louis off the board for his final 5 2/3 innings pitched, he still picked up a loss.
The 31-year-old, who reached the 125-pitch mark for the first time since June 10, 2011, fell to 4-6 with a 3.71 ERA in 15 starts this season.
A former Cub, Zambrano has plenty of experience against the Brewers, going 13-10 with a 3.81 ERA against them lifetime.
The Marlins seek a fifth victory in a row tonight after finishing off a three- game sweep of the Phillies on Sunday. Giancarlo Stanton and Hanley Ramirez both homered in the 5-2 win, while Ricky Nolasco allowed two runs over seven solid innings.
"The biggest thing today, besides pitching, was the home run by Hanley," Marlins manager Ozzie Guillen said of the eighth-inning blast. "Hanley opened the game up a little bit and gave us some room for a mistake in the ninth. We've been waiting for that. We've been waiting for Hanley's big day."
Omar Infante and John Buck had an RBI apiece for Miami, which won the final four games of a nine-game homestand to finish the residency at 5-4.