MIAMI (AP) -- The Florida Marlins know what they need to do to
win the NL wild card.
Mike Lowell and Miguel Cabrera homered and Brad Penny pitched
seven shutout innings as the Marlins beat the San Diego Padres 10-0
Friday night."These are games we have to win and we went out there and took
care of business," said Juan Pierre, who had two of the Marlins'
13 hits.With the win, the Marlins remained a half-game behind
Philadelphia, winners over St. Louis on Friday, in the NL wild-card
race.Lowell drove in three runs to give him a career-best 101 RBI.
He knows the goal is to take the Marlins to their first postseason
since winning the 1997 World Series."A win is a win, whether it is with a home run or up by 10,"
Lowell said. "We are playing well. Our pitching has given us the
confidence, even when we haven't produced offensively."Penny (11-9) took advantage of the run support, with one of his
best outings of the season. He allowed five hits and struck out
seven.Ugueth Urbina pitched the eighth and Braden Looper allowed a hit
in the ninth to finish the six-hitter."It was nice to have a good outing against them," Penny said.
"They hit a lot of balls hard but fortunately, they were right at
people. There were a lot of good defensive plays tonight."Lowell's third RBI -- a sacrifice fly -- scored Pierre in a
four-run seventh inning.Juan Encarnacion, Derrek Lee, Cabrera and Alex Gonzalez followed
Lowell's sacrifice fly with consecutive RBI singles.The Marlins built a 5-0 lead with two runs in the fifth on Ivan
Rodriguez's RBI single and Lowell's sacrifice fly.Rodriguez's sharp grounder bounced off Padres starter Oliver
Perez's left forearm into right field, scoring Pierre, who led off
the inning with a single and advanced on a balk. Perez (4-6) was
immediately removed and later diagnosed with a left wrist
contusion. He is day to day.Castillo, who reached on a walk, moved to third on Rodriguez's
hit and scored on Lowell's deep fly to left.Perez, celebrating his 22nd birthday, allowed five runs and
struck out six in four-plus innings."I wasn't comfortable throwing my slider tonight," Perez said.
"I was leaving it over the plate and they hit it."Lowell's 32nd home run with two out in the third gave the
Marlins a 3-0 lead.Cabrera put the Marlins ahead 2-0 with a his eighth homer
leading off the second.Castillo's double in the first inning followed Pierre's leadoff
double to give Florida a 1-0 lead.The Padres had runners on second and third with no outs in the
third after Dave Hansen's leadoff single and Miguel Ojeda's double.
But Penny struck out Perez and Ramon Vazquez and retired Mark
Kotsay on a groundout."We could have gotten back into it at that point," Padres
manager Bruce Bochy said. "That hurt."
^Notes:@ Penny continued his dominance in night games. The win
against the Padres improved Penny's record to 11-3 at night. ...
Lowell is second on the Marlins' single-season home run list.
Lowell was tied with Preston Wilson, who hit 31 in 2000. Gary
Sheffield holds the record with 42 home runs in 1996. ... Mark
Loretta extended his hitting streak to 13 games with a single to
lead off the fourth. ...Through his last three starts Perez has 30
strikeouts in 17 innings.