The Miami Marlins pulled off a massive comeback to beat a team on the fringe of the American League wild-card race
Miami is seeking its first three-game winning streak since taking three games from the St. Louis Cardinals from July 3-5. The Marlins are 11-20 since that point but are riding high after taking two of three games from the struggling New York Yankees
Down to their last three outs, the Marlins stormed back with a five-run ninth inning against the duo of Clay Holmes and Tommy Kahnle. National League batting leader Luis Arraez collected three hits and hit a game-tying, two-run triple, and Jake Burger's third hit drove in Arraez for the winning run
The Marlins now lead the majors with eight wins when trailing after eight innings, and it was their eighth walk-off win as well
"These guys don't stop believing," Marlins manager Skip Schumaker said. "It's just a thing in the clubhouse, a thing in the dugout. The guys that we acquired, they believe in it. There's no stop.
Houston is visiting the Marlins for the first time since 2017. The Astros have won 12 of 19 games overall amid a stretch that has them playing seven of nine series against opponents with winning records
The Astros were unable to finish off a sweep of the visiting Los Angeles Angels on Sunday, losing 2-1
After scoring 22 times and getting 28 hits in the first two games of the series, Houston finished with seven hits but also struck out 11 times and went hitless in eight at-bats with runners in scoring position in the finale. Jon Singleton scored the only run on a wild pitch in the sixth inning
"We just didn't get the big hits with runners in scoring position," Houston manager Dusty Baker said. "We had a number of opportunities, and we had some near misses.
Miami opens the series with left-hander Braxton Garrett (6-3, 4.08 ERA) on the mound, whose starts it often wins. The Marlins are 17-5 in Garrett's starts this year, and they won for the third straight time behind him when he allowed two runs in six innings of a 3-2 win at Cincinnati last Tuesday
Garrett picked up a win in his only previous outing against the Astros. On June 11, 2022, in Houston, he allowed an unearned run and six hits in 5 2/3 innings
Fellow lefty Framber Valdez (9-7, 3.30) will make his second start since tossing a no-hitter against Cleveland on Aug. 1. He followed up the gem by allowing six runs on eight hits in seven innings before Houston rallied for a 7-6 win in Baltimore last Tuesday
Valdez opposed Garrett last season and allowed four runs (two earned) on four hits and three walks in six innings for the loss in his only career start against the Marlins
--Field Level Medi