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MILWAUKEE -- An impressive night at the plate and a strong showing from left-hander Adam Conley allowed the Miami Marlins to steal a "home" victory at Milwaukee Saturday night. Now, they'll try to take the next step and take an entire series when they face the Brewers in the finale of their three-game set Sunday afternoon at Miller Park.
"That's what we talk about all the time," Marlins manager Don Mattingly said after his team's 7-4 victory Saturday night. "We started to get away from it because we weren't winning the first two but we have a chance tomorrow to win a series. Hopefully our (starting pitcher) Dillon (Peters) is good and we can swing the bat. We'll see where we're at."
Since sweeping three from the San Diego Padres Aug. 25-27, Miami has lost its last five series and has been swept three times. Taking a series from the Brewers would be nice, but even moreso because the Brewers are still in postseason contention but also because of the circumstances that led to the Marlins' trip to Milwaukee.
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The series was originally set to be played in South Florida, but with recovery efforts in the wake of Hurricane Irma ongoing, MLB shifted the games to the Brewers' home stadium.
"I think we've handled it OK," said Mattingly of the team's extended road trip.
The Marlins turn to rookie left-hander Peters to wrap up the series as well as his first big league victory. He's done well in his first three outings, posting a 2.50 ERA and has struck out 18 batters -- second most among Marlins rookies through their first three starts.
"I'm just following the lead of (catcher A.J. Ellis)," Peters said. "He knows what he's doing back there. I'm going to throw what he puts down."
Milwaukee will go with rookie right-hander Brandon Woodruff in the finale. He was impressive in his first three big league starts, going 1-1 with a 1.52 ERA, but got knocked around for the first time in his last outing, when he allowed six runs on seven hits and a walk in five innings of work.
After using eight pitchers in a "bullpen game" Friday night and covering five innings Saturday in the loss to Miami, the Brewers' bullpen would benefit from a long, bounce-back effort Sunday.
"There's guys who are pitching quite a bit, and that's certainly something that we've got to keep a close eye on," Brewers manager Craig Counsell said. "It's going to factor in here as we move forward, for sure. As we go here, getting starts where we go deep into games is important. Getting leads is going to be important. Those things matter when you're trying to deploy your pitching like this."
After losing Saturday, the Brewers will begin the day four full games behind the NL Central-leading Chicago Cubs and 3 1/2 games back of Colorado for the second National League wild-card spot after the Rockies rolled to a 16-0 victory over San Diego on Saturday night.