LeBlanc pitches 7 innings in 5-0 loss to Dodgers
MIAMI—Wade LeBlanc is doing his best to take advantage of his opportunity in the starting rotation.
LeBlanc pitched a season-high seven innings and allowed one run for the Miami Marlins in a 5-0 loss to the Los Angeles Dodgers on Sunday.
"LeBlanc gave what we wanted to get," Marlins manager Ozzie Guillen said. "One hundred pitches, six-plus, seven innings, great job. This kid has taken a step forward and hopefully his next start he can throw the same way."
LeBlanc (1-2) allowed six hits and did not walk a batter. But went up against Chris Capuano (11-8) who kept the Marlins hitless until the seventh.
"It's one of those cases where you just want to minimize damage, and I feel for the most part I was able to do that today," LeBlanc said. "The way Capuano was pitching is didn't really matter though."
Capuano was well aware of his no-hit bid as a fan constantly updated him.
"I started thinking about it a little bit probably after the fifth, sixth," Capuano said. "I had a nice heckler today when I was in the on-deck circle that kept reminding me. I actually turned to him and said, `Yeah, I know.'"
Capuano shut down the Marlins until Jose Reyes lined a clean single to center field with one out in the seventh.
"Jose's got a quick bat. I left one over the middle and he smoked it," Capuano said.
Capuano allowed two hits in eight innings, striking out nine. The 33-year-old lefty had lost his last three starts with a 6.75 ERA in that span.
"He's tough and he's tough for a younger club," Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said. "They've got some older guys, but they've got some younger guys that he can really pull the string and rock you back and forth, hard, soft, hard, soft. That's tough for young hitters."
Hanley Ramirez, acquired in a trade with the Marlins on July 25, drove in three runs for the Dodgers. He hit a sacrifice fly in the third and added a two-run single in eighth, giving him 500 career RBIs.
"His swing is great and if he just takes his hits, he's going to drive in a ton of runs, but he's going to hit more home runs too," Mattingly said. "Hanley can hit. He sees the ball early. He's a talented cat."
Ramirez went 6 for 13 with five RBIs in his first series against his former club. He was booed before each at-bat.
"Only my first at-bat (was emotional)," Ramirez said. "After that everything was back to normal. I was trying to do my job."
The Dodgers took a 1-0 lead into the eighth, and Heath Bell relieved LeBlanc. After getting one out, Bell allowed four straight hits, including the single by Ramirez and an RBI single by Andre Ethier.
Luis Cruz added an RBI double off Chris Hatcher to push the Dodgers lead to 5-0.
"The game went from a very good game to very bad game in one inning," Marlins manager Ozzie Guillen said.
Capuano allowed a bloop single by Nick Green in the eighth before Jamey Wright came on to pitch a perfect ninth. Capuano threw 69 of 102 pitches for strikes.
"He's got an unbelievable changeup and when he throws that fastball at 88, it looks like 100," said Reyes, who played with Capuano last season with the New York Mets.
NOTES: Matt Treanor was the Dodgers' catcher. His wife, Olympic beach volleyball gold medalist Misty May-Treanor, was at the game. ... The Marlins optioned C Brett Hayes to Triple-A New Orleans. C Rob Brantly, who was acquired in a trade with Detroit last month, will have his contract selected from Triple-A New Orleans on Monday. ... Ethier's .368 batting average (49 for 133) against the Marlins is the highest among active players with at least 125 plate appearances. ... It was LeBlanc's longest outing since pitching eight innings on April 24, 2011, while with San Diego. ... The Dodgers begin a four-game series at Pittsburgh on Monday and will send RHP Aaron Harang (7-7, 3.80 ERA) to the mound to face RHP Jeff Karstens (4-2, 3.77). ... Miami will host Philadelphia for a three-game set, with RHP Josh Johnson (7-8, 3.88) opposing Phillies RHP Kyle Kendrick (4-9, 4.86) in the opener.