05/12/12 12:46 PM ET
Reyes thinking triple right off the bat
By Joe Frisaro and Tom Green / MLB.com
It's also a reason the Marlins shortstop racks up so many triples. In the first inning on Friday against the Mets, Reyes delivered his third three-base hit of the season, putting him two behind Orlando Hudson for the Major League lead.
"It's how I play the game," the All-Star shortstop said. "As soon as I see the ball in the gap, I put that in my mind, 'If I get to third base, we have a better chance of scoring a run.' Especially with less than two outs, I try to get to third base all the time. I think that's why I am so successful. I don't think double, I think triple."
Since 2000, Reyes' 102 triples are the second most of any player in the game. Only Carl Crawford, with 112, has more.
Spacious Marlins Park is suited for three-base hits. For Reyes, his new home is similar to when he played with the Mets at Citi Field.
"My game is not hitting home runs," Reyes said. "My game is to hit the ball in the gap and run."
Reyes and Shane Victorino paced the Majors in triples last year with 16. In 2008, Reyes had a career-most 19.
The Marlins' single-season triples record is 13, set by Juan Pierre in 2005.
How many triples could Reyes hit in a season?
"I don't want to put a number on triples," he said. "I know if I stay healthy, there's going to be a lot of triples. I don't want to put any number in my mind. When you put a number on your mind, you put pressure on yourself. I just want to stay healthy. If you stay healthy, the numbers are going to be there."
Marlins' rotation doing its part so far
MIAMI -- As drawn up in the offseason, the Marlins have put together a rotation that is going deep into games and giving the club a chance to win.
Mark Buehrle did it again for Miami on Friday night, posting the latest quality start.
In 6 2/3 innings, the veteran left-hander gave up two runs, and he exited with the Marlins ahead, 3-2. Although Buehrle didn't ultimately get the win, the Marlins did, and his effort was the rotation's sixth straight quality start.
"That's what they put together," Buehrle said. "A rotation that can go out there and give quality starts and keep your team in the game."
Buehrle was a major free-agent addition in the offseason, and the Marlins acquired Carlos Zambrano in a trade with the Cubs.
The two joined Josh Johnson, Ricky Nolasco and Anibal Sanchez, forming one of the top rotations in the game. Their collective ERA of 3.04 is fourth best in the big leagues entering Saturday.
They've accumulated 207 1/3 innings, which is seventh most in the Majors. In terms of their collective effort, the starters are 9-9.
"Obviously, I think everybody would like to have more wins," Buehrle said. "But we're battling from last place, a couple of days ago, to where we are right now. We've got to keep it going."
After a slow April, the Marlins have won nine of 10 and they are back in the thick of the National League East race.
Miami's rotation has been the best in the game since May 1, posting a 2.34 ERA, along with two complete games.
The starters have stepped up at a time the offense has struggled to score runs. While the team is going through a successful stretch, it's played a number of stressful close games.
"We'd definitely like to have a bigger lead or win some games so it's not so stressful on everybody, but we're coming out ahead, no matter," Buehrle said.
Bonifacio running away with Marlins' records
MIAMI -- A couple of Marlins' stolen-base marks have now been swept away by Emilio Bonifacio.
The center fielder swiped two bags on Friday night against the Mets, making him 17-for-17 in stolen-base attempts.
Staying perfect in all 17 of his chances moved Bonifacio past Chuck Carr, who opened the 1994 season with 15 straight successful attempts.
Dating back to Sept. 27, 2011, Bonifacio has stolen 18 in a row, another team record. Carr had a stretch of 17 straight.
"It's like a hitter, you try to get a hit every time," said Bonifacio, who paces the Majors in steals. "When I get on base, I try to get a stolen base."
One of the fastest players in the game, Bonifacio swiped 40 bags in 2011. If he stays healthy, chances are he will seriously challenge Juan Pierre's single-season franchise record of 65, set in 2003.
"Stealing bases is timing, too," Bonifacio said. "I've been on base more, and it's helped me get my timing back. I get huge leads. I've been watching video. That's helping me a lot."
Manager Ozzie Guillen encourages the Marlins to run. Sometimes, he will just yell to his players to take off. On Friday night, for instance, Guillen actually waved from the dugout for Bonifacio to take off.
"Sometimes, when I take a couple of pitches, and I don't go anywhere, he will tell me, 'Go ahead!'" Bonifacio said.
Kearns always geared up to make impact
MIAMI -- Austin Kearns doesn't always know when his next at-bat will come, so the Marlins' reserve outfielder always stays ready. That was especially the case Friday night.
Kearns got the start in left field in the series opener against the Mets when he filled in for Logan Morrison, who was scratched from the lineup before batting practice due to soreness in his right knee. Manager Ozzie Guillen wasn't going to take any chances with Morrison's surgically repaired knee, so he turned to Kearns, who made his seventh start of the season.
"It's always good to get in there and get multiple at-bats," Kearns said. "No matter if you're pinch-hitting or in the lineup, you just try to have a quality at-bat."
Kearns rewarded Guillen's decision to put him in the lineup right away. Batting cleanup, Kearns launched a two-run home run to left field in the first inning off Mets lefty Johan Santana, capping a three-run frame for the Marlins in their 6-5 series-opening win.
It was the third homer of the season for Kearns, who finished the game 1-for-3 with the two RBIs.
Despite the big at-bat in the opening frame Friday, Kearns -- who has appeared in 15 of the Marlins' 32 games this season -- said it can be difficult not being in the lineup regularly, but added the key is to always be prepared to be called upon.
"You just got to do whatever gets you ready," Kearns said. "You just try to stay as prepared as you can and do whatever it is that you do. ... You just stay ready. Some guys are really good at it; [Greg] Dobbs is unbelievable at it. So you just try to be ready."
Joe Frisaro is a reporter for MLB.com. He writes a blog, called The Fish Pond. Follow him on Twitter @JoeFrisaro. Tom Green is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.