Originally posted on Fox Sports Ohio  |  Last updated 9/16/12
While the Cincinnati Reds are still comfortably cruising toward the NL Central title and the Miami Marlins occupy the East cellar, the teams have undergone a bit of a role reversal this weekend. The Marlins will send streaking Ricky Nolasco to the hill Sunday as they bid for their first sweep of the visiting Reds in nearly a decade. Holding a double-digit lead with 16 games to play, Cincinnati (87-59) appears nearly certain to win the Central for the second time in three years. Miami (65-81), meanwhile, is one loss from clinching its third consecutive losing season. Neither team has looked the part so far this weekend. After riding seven two-hit innings from Jacob Turner to a 4-0 victory in Friday's series opener, the Marlins reached Reds ace Johnny Cueto for six runs Saturday en route to a 6-4 win. Another victory Sunday would give the Marlins their first three-game winning streak since July 4-6 at Milwaukee and St. Louis, and their first sweep of the Reds since May 23-25, 2003, in Cincinnati. They'd appear to have a good chance to achieve both feats with Nolasco (12-12, 4.40 ERA) taking the ball. The right-hander, who opened the season 4-0 before enduring a five-game losing streak in mid-summer, is riding high again. He's allowed one earned run over 25 innings during a three-start winning streak that's included two shutouts of major league-leading Washington. "I had a little grey cloud there in the middle of the season, but making 32 starts a year it's tough to be good in all of them," Nolasco said after throwing a four-hitter against the Nationals last Sunday. "I had some bad starts, not getting deep into games like I should, but you've gotta stay strong mentally. You know it's a grind, keep grinding." To keep his run going, Nolasco may need to do a better job than in the past of keeping the Reds in the park. He's allowed two home runs or more - and a total of 11 - in each of his last five starts against Cincinnati, despite posting a 3-0 record in those outings. Jay Bruce, Joey Votto and Scott Rolen have two career homers apiece off Nolasco, and Rolen also has a pair of doubles in his 12 at-bats. The Reds will counter with Mat Latos (12-4, 3.72), who is 4-0 with a 1.67 ERA and .169 opponent batting average in his last six road starts, and is 5-0 with a 3.23 ERA in 11 outings away from home since a loss at St. Louis on April 18. The right-hander is also 2-0 in his last three starts overall after giving up three runs over six innings of Monday's 14-inning, 4-3 victory over Pittsburgh. However, Latos is 0-3 with an 8.82 ERA in four career starts versus the Marlins, failing to make it through the fifth inning in three of them. Miami slugger Giancarlo Stanton, who had a two-run triple among two hits Saturday, is 3 for 3 with a double off Latos. Cincinnati is averaging 2.8 runs per game and has yet to score more than five in any contest in September, though manager Dusty Baker is viewing that glass as half-full. "Actually, this is prepping them for the playoffs, because there are going to be more close one-run games," Baker told the Reds' official website. "There aren't going to be high outputs on offense."
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Report: Yankees close to trading Aroldis Chapman

WATCH: Dontrelle Willis' great reaction to Giancarlo Stanton home run

Reports: Sale cut up throwback uniforms with knife in protest

WNBA withdraws fines for teams that protested gun violence

Ezekiel Elliott: ‘Evil NEVER prevails’


Orioles, Padres reportedly talking trades of Melvin Upton, Cashner

Le’Veon Bell reportedly missed ‘several’ drug tests

Report: Islanders looking at locations to build new arena

Top five takeaways from this year's NBA Summer League

NCAA rules that hanging out with Drake is violation

WATCH: Justin Bieber arm wrestle Sixers center Joel Embiid

Report: Royals didn't invite Johnny Cueto to White House visit

Solo not taking any chances with Zika virus while in Rio

Rays reportedly demanding Profar in pitching deal with Rangers

Facebook doesn’t know the difference between Liverpool and Arsenal

Report: Teams asked about Wade Davis, asking price very high

Aussie Rules Football player accidentally kicks, breaks own leg

Former Arkansas football assistant trolls Bobby Petrino on social media

Could Clayton Kershaw's injury hinder trade talks?

Spurs strike a new deal with NBA stalwart Manu Ginobli

George makes return to Team USA following leg injury

Why the Clippers shouldn't break up their big three

White Sox pay homage to Bo Jackson’s bat-breaking skills with bobblehead

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Effect of ban on Russia could span beyond the Olympic Games

One Gotta Go: NBA players hate Facebook too

QUIZ: Name every city to host the NBA All-Star Game

One Gotta Go: NBA players settle the fast food beef

One Gotta Go: NBA players make tough choices on their favorite rappers

One Gotta Go: NBA Summer League is not about that Game of Thrones life

The top NHL free agents available as offseason winds down

WATCH: NBA jersey sponsors that need to happen

Expansion draft playing heavy hand in the current NHL offseason

WATCH: Pop & Timmy have a guys' night out

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Follow Yardbarker