The Marlins want to make sure nothing derails Marcell Ozuna’s prolific turnaround season.
Ozuna was kept out of the lineup Saturday to rest a sore left wrist that, according to manager Don Mattingly, has been bothering him for about a week.
Mattingly said they will monitor his progress and could decide to give him a couple more days off. The Marlins conclude their 10-game homestand Sunday and have a day off before opening a nine-game road trip Tuesday in Detroit.
“We just want to make sure we’re cautious with it,” Mattingly said. “We’re going to give him a day and see where he’s at [Sunday], and if it’s still bothering him, maybe get him a couple of days with the off day Monday.”
Never miss a local story.
Ozuna sprained his left wrist last season while playing in New Orleans in August during his stint in the minors.
Ichiro Suzuki started for Ozuna in center field Saturday and hit in the leadoff spot.
“Ozuna’s been feeling it when he’s been swinging at the plate for a couple of days now,” Mattingly said. “It’s a wrist he broke a couple of years back, and it gets sore on him every so often.”
Ozuna has gone from struggling to the point of being demoted to becoming the team’s most prolific hitter and making a legit case to be considered for the All-Star game.
Ozuna entered Saturday with the team’s highest batting average among everyday players (.320) and leading the team in home runs (16), triples (five) and RBI (44).
Ozuna also leads all qualifying National League outfielders in on-base percentage plus slugging (.948).
Derrek Lee (seven triples, 27 home runs) in 2002 and Moises Alou (five triples, 23 home runs) in 1997 are the only Marlins to ever lead the team in home runs and triples in a season.
“I came in during the offseason and just tried to work hard and get in shape,” Ozuna said. “I just let it ride and have fun. It would be awesome to get picked to the All-Star game. It would be something I’ve dreamed about.”
UPS AND DOWNS
Mike Dunn had only allowed one hit and one walk in four relief appearances before Friday’s game and seemed to be developing some sharpness following a his first stint on the disabled list (forearm strain) to open the season.
But for the second time in as many appearances, Dunn gave up a hit that drove in the go-ahead run that would lead to a Marlins loss. Dunn walked Kris Bryant, hit Ben Zobrist with a pitch and then gave up a single to rookie Willson Contreras that led to the Cubs’ 5-4 win.
“I can’t remember the last time I went out there and I couldn’t throw anything over the plate,” Dunn said. “I didn’t give the team a chance, walking guys, and you can’t do that. I put that one on my shoulders. It’s on me.”
Dunn has been charged with three earned runs (3.52 ERA) in 7 2/3 innings since returning May 31 but has also allowed four inherited runs to score. Dunn didn’t attribute his lack of command Friday to starting the season late because of the injury.
“I just had no command,” Dunn said. “I felt great and my arm feels fine. Ultimately, I have to fix things and get right as quickly as possible.”
The Marlins erased their nightmarish start to Friday’s game with one swing by Justin Bour.
After the Cubs tagged Tom Koehler for four runs in the top of the first inning, Bour drew the Marlins even at 4 with his second career grand slam, which came two weeks to the day after his first June 10 in Arizona.
Koehler allowed only one more hit over the five subsequent innings and finished with six strikeouts and two walks. It was Koehler’s fifth consecutive start in which he lasted six innings.
“It’s not very often you have an inning like that and you get a do-over,” Koehler said. “I looked at it like a 0-0 game from that point on, and I just wanted to give my team as much as I could.”
▪ Sunday: Marlins RHP Jose Fernandez (9-3, 2.36 ERA) vs. Cubs RHP Jason Hammel (7-3, 2.55), 1:10 p.m., Marlins Park.
▪ Monday: Off.