(Sports Network) – Roy Oswalt’s Phillies debut nearly a week ago was certainly a forgettable one. He’ll get a chance at redemption when Philadelphia aims for a three-game sweep of the hosting Florida Marlins tonight at Sun Life Stadium.
Acquired a week ago from the Houston Astros for three players, Oswalt made his first start with his new club on Friday and took the loss — his MLB-leading 13th of the season and third in a row overall — after allowing five runs (four earned) on seven hits over six innings against Washington.
“I came out early a little amped up, holding the ball a little tight,” said Oswalt, who is 6-13 with a 3.53 earned run average on the season. “I didn’t really start feeling better until the last two innings.”
The 32-year-old righty is 4-4 with a 2.97 ERA in four road starts and 5-4 with a 3.72 ERA in 12 career outings against Florida.
He’ll look to extend a solid pitching run for the Phillies so far in this series. Roy Halladay won Tuesday’s opener thanks to seven innings of one-run ball and Kyle Kendrick held the Marlins to just a pair of runs on eight hits over six frames of a 7-2 triumph last night.
Kendrick appeared unfazed by the 58-minute rain delay to start the game, while Marlins starter Anibal Sanchez struggled and gave up four runs over 4 1/3 innings to suffer the loss.
“I was warmed up and ready, and it started raining,” Sanchez said. “So I waited for an hour. That made me a little bit tired before the game.”
Domonic Brown drove in three runs for the Phils and also threw out a runner at the plate in the third inning with his team up just a run. Placido Polanco and Raul Ibanez combined to notch four hits and four runs scored, while Ibanez also drove in two runs.
“The defense has been good for me all year,” Kendrick said.
Philadelphia has won three straight and 11 of its last 13 to move 11 games over .500 (59-48) and remain two games back of first-place Atlanta in the National League East, while three consecutive setbacks and losses in five of eight have dropped Florida a game under .500 at 53-54.
Gaby Sanchez had four hits for the Marlins in last night’s loss, while Mike Stanton clubbed a solo homer.
Chris Volstad aims to make it two straight wins tonight for Florida. He snapped a five-start winless drought with a win over San Diego on Friday.
Volstad had been 0-2 with a 6.31 ERA over his drought before limiting the Padres to a pair of runs, seven hits and three walks over five innings of his first victory since June 13. The 23-year-old improved to 5-8 with a 4.71 ERA on the season.
Volstad, a right-hander, gave up six runs — five earned — on eight hits over four innings when he last faced the Phillies, back on June 8 in Philadelphia. He’s 2-3 with a 4.09 ERA lifetime against the club.
He might see a fresh face tonight in Philadelphia’s lineup, as Mike Sweeney could make his debut after being acquired from Seattle on Wednesday for a player to be named later or cash considerations.
The 37-year-old is a former five-time AL All-Star and was hitting .263 with six homers and 18 RBI in 30 games this year. His season includes a pair of disabled list stints due to back issues, and he is expected to see the bulk of duty at first base while Ryan Howard is out.
These two clubs entered this series having split 26 total meetings since 2009. The Phillies won two of three in Florida in late May and have won 13 of the last 16 meetings at Sun Life Stadium, including a pair of three-game sweeps last season.