In tough loss, Koehler's performance a silver lining

In tough loss, Koehler's performance a silver lining

MIAMI -- After a forgetful outing at Milwaukee last Sunday, Miami's Tom Koehler essentially pushed the reset button. The right-hander cleared his mind of all that went wrong and got himself back on track.

The silver lining in the Marlins' 4-3 loss to the Phillies on Saturday night is Koehler tossed seven strong innings, scattering two hits, giving up one run and striking out eight.

The Marlins desperately needed at least seven innings from a starter. Koehler delivered.

"Honestly, I just tried to forget everything that I'd been doing and just get back to attacking the zone, getting into a good rhythm and working the gameplan," Koehler said.

Koehler was commanding his pitches and mixing them up. His breaking pitches and changeups also were on point as he worked smoothly with catcher Jeff Mathis.

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"I was not trying to get four outs with one pitch," Koehler said. "Make each pitch at that moment the important one and just have all my focus on each and every pitch that I throw."

In his last start, Koehler was rocked for eight runs on eight hits in 2 1/3 innings against the Brewers.

"Tommy was really good today," manager Don Mattingly said. "It was good to see him bounce back that way. He was really aggressive. I felt like the whole game he just kind of went after them, attacked them, changed speeds."

Koehler was in line for the win before the Phillies capitalized on Chris Johnson's error in the eighth inning, which capped a three-run rally.

"Stuff like that happens," Koehler said. "We've been playing tremendous baseball. We need to come back tomorrow and continue doing what we've been doing. You're going to lose games. It's going to happen. Guys just have to come back tomorrow and keep battling like we have over the last two weeks. That's really it. Move on."

Joe Frisaro has covered the Marlins for since 2002. He writes a blog, called The Fish Pond. Follow him on Twitter @JoeFrisaro and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.