Ricky Nolasco believes he is "getting closer" to pitching the way he wants. It doesn't help that even when he pitches well, he doesn't get much run support.
Nolasco gave up just one run and four hits in seven innings Wednesday, but was outpitched by San Diego's Jason Marquis in the Padres' 1-0 win over the Miami Marlins.
The Marlins have the league's lowest batting average (.225) and have scored the fewest runs (99). They have been shutout six times, including twice by the Padres in the last three days.
"It's frustrating, but I put myself in a bad situation there," said Nolasco.
'There' was the sixth inning of a scoreless game when the Padres loaded the bases with one out on back-to-back singles by Wil Venable and Chase Headley and a walk to Carlos Quentin.
"I really lost this game by walking Carlos Quentin," said Nolasco, who has posted double digit victories in five straight years. "I had an 0-2 count and I can't put him away. I end up walking him and that was the game right there."
Yonder Alonso followed Quentin's walk with a deep fly to left field and Venable tagged up and scored the only run of the game as the Padres completed a three-game sweep.
The Marlins dropped to 10-25, tying 1999 for their second-worst record after 35 games, ahead of only a 9-26 start in 1995, according to STATS.
Marquis (4-2) allowed five hits, walked one and struck out three in eight innings, his longest stint since last Aug. 11th when he had a complete-game 5-0 win at Pittsburgh.
Huston Street pitched the ninth to pick up his eighth save in eight chances.
In the top of the seventh, the Marlins put runners on first and second on consecutive two-out singles by Justin Ruggiano and Greg Dobbs. However, Marquis struck out Derek Dietrich, who was making his major league debut, to end the inning.
Dietrich got his first career hit in his first major league at bat when he singled off Marquis leading off the third. Miguel Olivo followed with a double. However, Marquis got Nolasco to ground to third with the runners holding. After Juan Pierre coaxed a walk to load the bases, Marquis got Adeiny Hechavarria to hit a grounder back to the mound, which he turned into a 1-2-3 inning-ending double play.
"We had that one shot and we couldn't get that hit and score those runs," Marlins manager Mike Redmond said. "It's disappointing because believe me, everyone in that (locker room) is trying to get hits and score runs. Right now we are in a funk, but that can change quick."
As for Nolasco, "Ricky did a great job again today, especially in a game we are trying to win and not get swept," Redmond said.
NOTES: Marlins pitcher Alex Sanabia, who left Tuesday night's game with a slight right groin pull, said he was going to play catch on Wednesday and did not think he would miss his next start. Marlins manager Redmond said that Sanabia could be pushed back a day or two with the team having a day off on Thursday and another day off on Monday. ... Redmond said that INF Chris Valaika, who fractured his left wrist Tuesday night will likely be out from four to six weeks. Valaika was the 11th player put on the disabled list, tied with the Yankees for the most in the majors. ... OF Chris Coghlan was pressed into service at second when Valaika left the game in the eighth inning Tuesday. It marked the first time he played in the infield at any level since 2009. ... The Marlins head to Los Angeles Friday when RHP Jose Fernandez (1-2, 3.48) will pitch against the Dodgers' RHP Matt Magill (0-0, 7.88).