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STL@MIA: Nolasco allows three hits, strikes out four

Ricky Nolasco, set to be a free agent at season's end, may be nearing the end of his time in Miami.

The 30-year-old righty has the most wins (80) and strikeouts (998) in Marlins history, but he's been the subject of some trade talks because his contract will be up in a few months, so Miami may move him at the July 31 non-waiver Trade Deadline. The Padres have been rumored to be in the mix.

But Nolasco is trying to block out the speculation and trade talk, controlling what he can control, beginning Friday against San Diego in the first of a four-game set.

"My stuff has been sharp pretty much for the whole year. Everything feels good. I feel pretty good arm wise, body wise. Everything is perfect," said Nolasco. "I'm just blocking all that other stuff out."

Nolasco, however, wasn't sharp in his last start. He allowed nine hits and three runs over 5 2/3 innings, taking a no-decision in a win over San Francisco.

Edison Volquez, who will start Friday for the Padres, flirted with a no-hitter through five innings in his last start, but he wasn't exactly dominant. He walked seven batters and allowed two hits and five runs (two earned) in 5 2/3 innings in a loss to the Dodgers on Saturday.

"From at-bat to at-bat, was just a little bit of a variable, more so than when we've seen him on top of his game," Padres manager Bud Black said of Volquez's performance. "He was throwing the ball well. They didn't square many balls up and hit the ball hard. But the walks came back to bite him."

The Padres got the best of the Marlins in May, sweeping them in a three-game set at Petco Park and outscoring them 11-1.

Marlins: Ruggiano returns, goes 1-for-4
Justin Ruggiano was back in the Marlins lineup on Wednesday. He was out on Tuesday, hindered by a sore left shoulder from diving for the ball on Sunday at San Francisco.

He went 1-for-4 with two strikeouts. He had a .228/.297/.419 slash line with 11 home runs and 28 RBIs in 215 at-bats entering Wednesday.

Padres: Cabrera nearing return
Everth Cabrera (strained hamstring) will travel with the Padres this weekend, and the club is hopeful he'll come off the disabled list on July 2 -- the first day he's eligible to return. The plan is for Cabrera to play in Minor League rehab games over the weekend before making his return in Boston.

"More importantly, I want to watch him run," Black said. "He ran [Tuesday], sprints at about 50 percent and took ground balls. Today, it's about 75 percent, and he's increasing the activity level. He's doing well. The medical staff is hopeful for the 16th day. It's going to be close."

Cabrera is hitting .305 with an .800 OPS this season. He has scored 37 runs and stolen 31 bases in 38 attempts.

Worth noting
• Marlins starters have allowed two or fewer runs in eight of their last 10 starts.

• Nolasco is 4-4 with a 4.69 ERA and 4.00 strikeout-to-walk ratio in 10 appearances against the Padres (nine starts). He allowed one run in seven innings on May 8 in a loss to San Diego.

• Miami is 3-9 at home against the Padres since 2009. Comments