The Marlins have promised to give the first 15,000 fans who attend Wednesday afternoons series finale against the Phillies a specially designed pillowcase featuring catcher John Buck.
There might not ever be a more well-timed promotion in franchise history.
Playing through arguably its most sleep-inducing offensive stretch ever, the Marlins set a team record Tuesday night when they were shut out for the third consecutive game a 1-0 loss to Philadelphia in front of 23,879 at Marlins Park.
Our guys are spending three hours in the cage and two seconds in the batters box, manager Ozzie Guillen said afterward. It starts getting old. Its not fun when youre not scoring runs.
The Marlins, who have scored the second-fewest runs in baseball (only the Cubs have scored less), also tied a team record for consecutive scoreless innings at 27, a record set from Sept. 11-15 in the inaugural season of 1993.
That record will likely be shattered by the time most South Floridians return from their lunch break Wednesday. The Phillies (54-62) are sending two-time Cy Young award winner Roy Halladay who threw a perfect game against the Marlins two years ago to the mound.
Tuesday, it was Phillies starter Kyle Kendrick who baffled the last-place Marlins (52-65). A day after Cole Hamels pitched a complete-game shutout, Kendrick gave up five hits all singles over seven innings and struck out six without giving up a walk.
What little trouble Kendrick faced, he got out of easily.
In the first, he got Carlos Lee to ground out to short with a runner on second. And in the sixth, he got Lee to pop out to second with two outs and Bryan Petersen on third.
The Phillies got all the offense they needed on the games second pitch. Jimmy Rollins blasted a 374-foot home run to right field off Josh Johnson. The Marlins ace gave up only two more hits after that over eight innings, walking one and making 115 pitches. But like all pitching efforts by the Marlins these days, it meant nothing.
My job is to put up zeroes, and I gave up one, Johnson said. Its my fault.
Marlins rookie catcher Rob Brantly, acquired from the Tigers last month along with pitcher Jacob Turner in the Anibal Sanchez-Omar Infante deal, made his major-league debut behind the plate. He finished 0 for 3.
It was pretty much Welcome to the show, Brantly said. The second pitch you call goes over the fence. Thats baseball.
His parents, Rob and Yvonne, took a red-eye flight along with two of his cousins and agent to come see his major-league debut.
Brantly said he was only 5 years old when his grandfather bought him his first set of catchers gear.
John Paul Brantly, a former catcher in the Panamanian baseball league who passed away the same year his grandson was drafted out of high school, always told his Rob the easiest way to make it to the big leagues would be behind the plate.
I always think I carry him with me, Brantly said of his grandfather. I always hear his voice saying, Hey Robby, hit that ball with authority. Id get up there and swing and tell him, I hit it with authority.
The Marlins didnt do that Tuesday. Or Monday. Or Sunday.