Arizona goes for a series victory when they host the flailing Florida Marlins in the finale of a four-game set at Sun Life Stadium in Miami. Arizona will send Zach Duke to the mound while the slumping Marlins will counter with Ricky Nolasco. 

Baseball odds opened the Fish as -140 favorites on the moneyline with the total holding at 8.

Heading into Sunday’s game, the Diamondbacks had lost four of their previous five games (they beat the Marlins 9-5 on Saturday, as Jasonal_98 said they would). However, they got a terrific effort from rookie Daniel Hudson (-121) in a 5-1 win over the Marlins. Hudson who began the year with four straight losses has turned things around winning seven of his last eight. He worked 6 1/3 innings giving up one run and eight hits to improve his record to 7-5 while helping Arizona improve its road record to 16-17. Ryan Roberts slugged his 10th home run while Stephen Drew went 3 for 4 to lead the Snakes attack. Losing pitcher Brad Hand (0-2, 3.27) worked five innings and allowed three earned runs.

In a theme that’s become all too familiar, the Marlins (32-32) were done in by a lack of hitting with runners in scoring position. In addition to the 10 hits, Florida also received three walks but finished with 13 LOB. During their current home stand they’re 12 for 91 with RISP and have stranded 92 runners.     

Zach Duke Pitcher Arizona DiamondbacksStanton stats

Mike Stanton has been a thorn in the side of Arizona in his brief career hitting .344 with four home runs and eight RBI’s. The 6-5, 240 pound outfielder had 22 homers and 59 runs batted in 359 at-bats in 2010 and this year, in 212 plate appearances, he’s jacked 16 HR’s with 39 RBI’s. Coming out of high school in Southern California, USC recruited him to play baseball, UCLA and UNLV offered football scholarships but in the end, he chose baseball and the Marlins fast tracked him to the big leagues a mere three years after he was drafted.

The Diamondbacks have cooled offensively although they still rank 7th in the majors in per game scoring (4.61). Over the past week, just one player, Justin Upton, is hitting .300 or better (.303) while Stephen Drew is 7 for 24 (.292) with a homer and four runs batted in. Kelly Johnson and Chris Young have each homered twice and driven in 13 runs. Overall Johnson and Young share the team lead in home runs (12) while Drew has the top average of the regulars (.295).

From bad to worse

Florida is 2-12 in its last 14 games and is back at the .500 mark for the first time since April 12. They’re 1-9 on their current home stand and 5-16 in their last 21 outings at Sun Life Stadium. After tonight’s game the Marlins head to Philadelphia to begin a three-game series against the Phillies who will send Cole Hamels to the mound on Tuesday with Roy Halladay scheduled for a Wednesday appearance

Arizona’s road trip continues Tuesday night in San Francisco where they’ll face the division-leading Giants. Josh Collmenter and Matt Cain meet in Game 1 while Joe Saunders and Madison Bumgarner square off Wednesday in a battle of lefthanders.

Arizona ATM

The Diamondbacks are the new No. 1 on the list of most profitable teams in baseball for MLB handicappers. The Snakes are $+938 on the ML and $+589 on the RL.

The losing streak has been extremely costly for Florida backers who have seen the once healthy money line profits drop to $-0.43. The run line has also taken a heat ($0.04).

The Sun Life Stadium weather forecast is calling for partly cloudy skies and temperatures near 80. There’s a 20 percent chance of rain with winds out of the West at 10 MPH.

Harvey’s Take: Arizona is the choice here. Winning is contagious and even journeyman Zach Duke has fed off the new positive attitude in Diamondback country. Nolasco will keep it close but I’ve got Arizona winning a high-scoring thriller.