Marlins aim for split vs. Dodgers

LOS ANGELES -- J.T. Riddle is answering questions about his ability to play in the big leagues.

The rookie shortstop, who delivered a career performance as the Miami Marlins ended a six-game skid with a victory over the Los Angeles Dodgers on Saturday, will attempt to continue his impressive showing when the clubs complete their four-game series on Sunday at Dodger Stadium.

Marlins right-hander Vance Worley will make his season debut, opposing Dodgers righty Brandon McCarthy (3-1, 4.15 ERA).

After Los Angeles won the first two games of the series, Riddle sparked the Marlins to a 10-6 decision over the Dodgers on Saturday. He homered and fell a triple shy of the cycle, going 3-for-5 with a career-high four RBI.

Riddle opened the season 2-for-14 (.143) with a home run in seven games before he was optioned to the minors on April 20. He was recalled on May 8.

"J.T.'s looked really good," Marlins manager Don Mattingly said. "When we saw him earlier, he didn't swing the bat as well the first time he came up. I think we did see the calmness in his hands out there (Saturday), just his clock out there, his timing with everything was really good. He's looked really comfortable."

Mattingly was forced to pencil in Riddle as the starting shortstop after Adeiny Hechavarria (left oblique strain) and Miguel Rojas (right thumb fracture) went down with injuries. Riddle, who fell to 2-for-21 (.087) through May 14, is 9-for-21 (.429) this week, raising his average to .262 with two home runs and nine RBI.

"It's a huge opportunity," Riddle told the Marlins' website. "I'm sitting there in spring training, and you don't sit there and hope people get hurt just so you get a chance, that's not how I wanted it to go. But when guys go down, I get a chance to step in and come up here and play every day and try to help the team."

The Marlins (15-27) will try to win a second straight game for the first time in almost a month when they face McCarthy and the Dodgers.

Although he got hit hard in his last outing, McCarthy has been solid this season. He was tagged for a season-high six runs on eight hits in 5 2/3 innings in an 8-4 loss to the San Francisco Giants on Monday. McCarthy struck out five and walked one on 103 pitches.

In his lone career start against the Marlins, McCarthy threw a complete-game shutout as a member of the Arizona Diamondbacks on May 18, 2013. McCarthy limited Miami to three hits with five strikeouts and two walks on 99 pitches.

Los Angeles (25-19) is anxious to capture the series against Miami. Dodgers rookie Cody Bellinger believes a hit or two in the Saturday loss could have changed the outcome of a game his team trailed by 10 runs.

"One-hundred sixty-two games, it's not always going to be pretty," said Bellinger, who became the fastest Dodger ever to reach nine homers, getting there in 24 games. "We fought back and put together good at-bats down 10-0. That's all you can ask for. If we had a couple of more balls go our way, it could have been exciting."

Worley, whom the Marlins signed to a minor league contract in April, was called up Saturday ahead of his Sunday start against the Dodgers. At Triple-A New Orleans, Worley compiled a 2-5 mark with a 4.43 ERA in eight starts.

In his most recent outing, the 29-year-old California native allowed three runs in six innings during a win at Reno on May 14.

Worley is 1-0 with a 5.63 ERA in four career games (three starts) against the Dodgers.
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