For a team in crying need of a pick-me-up, the slumping Marlins got just what the good doctor ordered.
The defending National League champions.
The Marlins handed the struggling Dodgers -- the Majors' most disappointing team -- their fifth straight loss with a 4-2 victory at Marlins Park in front of 6,242.
Not that the Marlins are taking the league by storm. Going into Tuesday, they had lost six of their past seven games and sat in last place in the National League East. They remained entrenched there after Tuesday's win.
But the Dodgers, who took the Astros to seven games in last year's World Series, are having an even tougher time. They arrived in Miami having lost seven of their past eight, including a four-game series sweep at home to the lowly Reds. They've gone 1-9 over their last 10 games against the N.L.'s three last-place teams -- the Marlins, Padres and Reds.
The Marlins, who won two of three from the Dodgers in Los Angeles last month, can now do no worse than split their season series with them.
"Nobody expects a great team like that to have one this bad," Marlins catcher J.T. Realmuto said of the Dodgers' slump. "But that's just part of the game. They'll get back on track, especially when they get their guys healthy."
Realmuto went 3 for 4 with a RBI double, Brian Anderson had two hits with a RBI, and the Marlins got back on track after dropping three out of four to Atlanta.
Wei-Yin Chen delivered a far superior start than he did in his two previous outings when he was tagged for five home runs. Not only did Chen keep the ball in the park, but kept the Dodgers off the board. Still, manager Don Mattingly decided to take no chances with the lefty and lifted him in the fifth as part of a double switch, preventing Chen from earning the win.
"We've kind of watched Chen over the last few years, and it seems like when he hits that wall, he hits it," Mattingly said. "He took a lot (83) pitches to get there."
The bullpen covered the final 4 2/3 innings, with Tayron Guerrero a Yasiel Puig home run and Brad Ziegler giving one up to Cody Bellinger in the ninth.
Realmuto has feasted on Dodgers pitching his entire career. He has now hit safely in all 20 games he's played against them, and he wasted no time in extending the streak Tuesday with first-inning single.
Martin Prado, who was put in the leadoff spot Tuesday for the first time this season, collected two hits and made a pair of outstanding defensive plays, one on Austin Barnes' hot grounder in the third that kept the ball from going into the corner for extra bases, and again on a diving catch on Alex Wood's sacrifice bunt attempt.
Wood popped into the air near the first base line and Prado came charging in from his position to make the grab.
"That's Martin right there," Mattingly said. "That's just incredible effort to come from third base to make that play. That's why these guys love him. That's why we all love him, because of the way he plays. That right there symbolizes who Martin is."
The Dodgers fell to 16-25 while the Marlins improved to 15-26 -- a difference of only one game.
Wood took the loss for the Dodgers, going to 0-4.
"It ends sometime," Mattingly said of the Dodgers' current woes. "Those things end, and then they win a bunch in a row. I don't know the situation over there. We've got enough problems of our own to deal with and what we're trying to build to worry about that. Obviously, they're a talented club."