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Bats looking to stay hot entering 11-game trip

Bats looking to stay hot entering 11-game trip

SAN DIEGO -- At home, the Marlins have been able to put up big offensive numbers. So much so, that they have opponents wondering if they are doing anything fishy.

The Braves openly wondered if Miami was stealing signs at Marlins Park. The accusation became a theme throughout the Marlins' nine-game homestand. Not only did Atlanta mix up its signs, so did the Dodgers and Mets.

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No matter what was thrown, the Marlins had an answer and posted three straight home-series victories.

Next for the upstart, young club is to see if the same approach to hitting works on the road.

As productive as Miami has been at Marlins Park, the opposite has held true in the first two road trips.

The Marlins went 2-10 and managed 32 total runs.

Manager Mike Redmond stresses the importance of "playing out of our suitcases."

"Naturally, you can look at the numbers home and the road, but that's going to change as the season goes," Redmond said. "We've had some rough road games and some tough road losses. I'm excited going on the road now and see how we do now. It's going to be a test."

The first leg of their West Coast trek is at spacious Petco Park against the Padres.

Hitting coach Frank Menechino has stressed a team approach where players try not to do too much. The plan at home was to use the big gaps to the team's advantage. And on the road, in smaller parks, the hope was the line drives that were doubles in Miami turned into home runs.

"Frankie has done a great job with the guys," Redmond said. "He's got a unique style. He's relentless with those guys. He never lets up. He's on them. He's talking about approach every single day. And with each pitcher who comes in, he tries to let them understand what they can and can't do. I think we're seeing results of that, too."

As for sign stealing, Redmond has heard conspiracy theories before. When he was a player at Minnesota, he played in the Metrodome, which was often referred to as the "Homer Dome."

Opponents questioned if the Twins turned on the air conditioners when they hit. The thinking was the AC could make the ball travel further.

"You'd see the air conditioners blowing, and everybody was like, 'Oh, man, watch, they turn on the air conditioning when they start hitting,'" Redmond said.

Joe Frisaro is a reporter for MLB.com. He writes a blog, called The Fish Pond. Follow him on Twitter Less