The Marlins are at a loss to explain it.
But, for whatever reason, their record on the road is abysmally bad.
“Evidently it’s the beds we sleep in,” said manager Dan Jennings, trying to shed some humor on the situation. “It’s something that’s a strange phenomena as to why our road record is what it is.”
The Marlins’ 3-1 loss to Arizona on Monday was their eighth straight on the road. The franchise record for consecutive road losses in one season is 11.
While the Marlins have managed to compile a winning record at home, going 24-23 in Miami, they’ve been a wreck on the road, where their 14-32 record heading into Tuesday ranked as one of the worst in club history.
Only the bumbling 1998 Marlins, which lost 108 games, finished with a lower winning percentage on the road.
And this year’s Marlins team is not far off that mark for road futility.
“There’s no descriptive reason as to why you guys do this on the road and that’s why your record is what it is,” Jennings said.
Third baseman Casey McGehee said the wide home-road disparity is definitely a head-scratcher.
“I think it’s the age-old question for everybody,” McGehee said.
McGehee said when he was with Milwaukee, the Brewers had a similar problem: they dominated at home but struggled badly on the road.
“That was like a major source of stress for the organization,” McGehee said.
There are some factors that reveal the Marlins’ failings on the road.
Their pitching, for one, has been decidedly worst in out-of-town ballparks than it has in the pitcher-friendly confines of Marlins Park.
As a staff, the Marlins rank eighth in the National League with a 3.80 ERA. But it would be a lot worse if not for its 3.23 ERA at home. On the road, the figure increases to 4.45 —13th of the 15 N.L. teams.
Offensively, the news isn’t much better for the Marlins. They are 11th of 15 NL teams in runs scored on the road.
“There’s certain ballparks that you walk into, no matter how you’re doing, you feel like you’re getting hits,” McGehee said. “And there’s certain ballparks, no matter what I’m doing, you feel like you really have to get locked in.”
Some ballparks are more favorable to individual hitters than others, in other words.
But pretty much all the ballparks other than their own haven’t been kind to the Marlins.
According to Stats LLC, the Marlins enjoy a plus-34 run differential at home, where they have hit .270 with a 2.57 ERA. That compares to a minus-41 run differential on the road, where the Marlins are hitting .242 with a 4.41 ERA.
Major League Baseball might need to examine its replay procedures following a glitch that gave the Diamondbacks an unfair advantage for about an inning Monday.
Early in the game, a technical malfunction left the Marlins with only one camera angle with which to review plays. Each team is usually provided with nine to 12 angles.
Jennings complained to umpiring crew chief Larry Vanover, who contacted New York for a ruling. Vanover then informed Jennings that the Marlins would be given extra time to decide whether or not to challenge a call.
Jennings felt the better solution would have been to have the Diamondbacks reduced to one camera angle, as well.
“Wait a second, don’t you have to shut those guys [the Diamondbacks] down, too?” Jennings said he asked umpires. “There has to be a sense of fair play for both sides. I think that’s something that will be addressed over the winter.”
Vanover acknowledged Tuesday that baseball’s replay system is “still a work in progress,” but that procedures were followed correctly Monday. “That’s the way the rule’s written,” Vanover said.
Vanover said he even double-checked with New York a second time on the rule after Jennings asked him about it.
“[Jennings said] ‘That don’t seem right,’” Vanover recounted. “I said, yeah, that’s odd. I see your point. I’ll double-check to make sure.”
Added Vanover: “I’m sure that will come up sometime this winter.”
▪ Wednesday: Marlins RHP Jose Fernandez (2-0, 2.37) at Arizona LHP Robbie Ray (3-4, 2.29), 9:40 p.m., Chase Field.
▪ Thursday: Marlins RHP Tom Koehler (7-6, 3.38) at San Diego Padres RHP Tyson Ross (6-7, 3.38), 10:10 p.m., Petco Park.
This season is shaping up to be among the Marlins’ worst ever on the road: