Producing with runners in scoring position has plagued the team all season, and it surfaced again on Wednesday night in a 5-1 loss to the Cubs at Wrigley Field.
Miami was 0-for-11 in those situations, and stranded 11 runners on base. A turning point came in the fifth inning, when the score was tied at 1. Emilio Bonifacio tripled to open the inning, and the team didn't score.
For the season, the Marlins are batting .227 with runners in scoring position. In the National League, only the Padres have a lower average, at .212.
With two outs and runners in scoring position, Miami's batting average is .199, which ranks 13th in the 16-team NL.
"Timely hitting," Jose Reyes said. "I know this year, with runners in scoring position, we're not doing too good in those situations. I know, if we want to get to the next level, we need to start getting better."
Inconsistent production at the plate has been a problem. On Tuesday night, the Marlins scored nine runs, with three home runs accounting for seven of those.
On Wednesday, Reyes' homer was the lone Miami run.
The poor offensive showing came on a night Josh Johnson pitched effectively, until he ran into bad luck in the seventh inning, when Chicago scored four runs.
"Our pitching, they've kept us in the game," Reyes said. "That's something they've been doing over the whole year. Timely hitting and being consistent at it, that's going to help this ballclub a lot."
Despite being 10 games behind the Nationals in the NL East, Carlos Lee notes the Marlins are going to be facing teams in their own division soon, and they can make up ground.
"We still have to face a lot of teams in our division," the first baseman said. "I think we can take care of that ourselves and move on."