After earning a second chance to prove his worth in Miami's starting rotation, Tom Koehler is eager to impress.
Koehler will take the hill against the Rockies for his first MLB start since July 2. He has spent time in the Marlins' bullpen and at Triple-A New Orleans during the All-Star break.
Now that he is back to being a starter, Koehler hopes to be show more consistency in his second stint in Miami's rotation. He previously recorded four quality starts in 10 tries, three of which came in consecutive outings.
He has a 1-5 record with a 4.99 ERA as a starter and a 3.18 ERA in five appearances out of the bullpen.
"I'm looking to build off the stuff I've been working on in the first half," Koehler said. "There have been a lot of games where I've thrown really well, and there have been some where I've struggled. For me, the key is just try to be as consistent as I can and not have such high points and low points. Basically, be able to keep my team in the game but always do it as I'm performing."
Even though he has pitched only twice in July, Koehler has remained sharp with several bullpen sessions. Even the All-Star break could not slow him down.
"With the off-days, once you get back into the swing of watching the games, it doesn't feel like a long layoff," Koehler said. "You feel like you can get right back into your routine."
The key for Koehler will be to throw strikes earlier and more often. After walking only nine batters in his first six starts, he walked nine in a three-start stretch from June 15-26.
No walks in five innings against the Braves during his most recent start on July 2 is an encouraging sign for the right-hander. Koehler also walked only two in six innings in a July 8 start for New Orleans.
"If you fall behind once in a while, you can get away with it," Koehler said. "But if you fall behind consistently in the game, it allows the entire team to gain momentum. So the key is getting ahead ... and keep building on every hitter."
Koehler will face Colorado left-hander Drew Pomeranz, who has struggled in three Major League starts this season.
Pomeranz has not lasted more than 4 1/3 innings in any of those outings, compiling a 0-3 record and an 8.76 ERA.
Marlins: Stanton hoping to lift offense
The offense set a franchise mark by going scoreless 37 consecutive innings through Sunday, the longest such streak since Houston's 42 straight frames from July 13-20, 1985.
Giancarlo Stanton, who is batting .360 with seven home runs and 10 RBIs in seven career games at Coors Field, is confident the Marlins will get back on track at the plate.
"The layoff is usually good for a majority of players, to get a little rest," Stanton said. "I don't know if it's too much the timing. Maybe rhythm, a little bit."
Rockies: Starting strong
Colorado's starting pitchers have allowed one earned run or none in six straight games. Their ERA during that span is 1.18.
Rockies starters have allowed three earned runs or fewer in 11 straight games. Pomeranz is the last Colorado starter to give up more than three earned in a start, surrendering five runs in an 11-1 loss to Arizona on July 6.
• The Marlins' Adeiny Hechavarria leads the National League with a .429 batting average (27-for-63) during July. He finished 2-for-5 on Sunday, making him 3-for-9 since moving to the leadoff spot on Saturday.
• Marlins reliever Chad Qualls struck out two in a scoreless ninth on Sunday to record his seventh straight scoreless outing, spanning eight innings.
• The Rockies' Carlos Gonzalez tallied two total bases on Sunday to up his National League-leading total to 222.
Joe Morgan is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.