South Florida is the center of the sporting universe, with the Miami Heat playing in the NBA Finals, the Florida Panthers participating in the Stanley Cup Final and Lionel Messi agreeing to join Inter Miami.
The Miami Marlins are doing their part to gain attention, too, contending for a divisiontitle with a player batting above .400.
The Marlins and Luis Arraez will look to continue their torrid stretches on Friday night when Miami visits the Chicago White Sox in the opener of a three-game interleague series.
Rookie Eury Perez (3-1, 2.25 ERA) is slated to start for the Marlins against Dylan Cease (3-3, 4.63 ERA) in a matchup of right-handers.
The Marlins were off Thursday after extending their winning streak to six games on Wednesday, when they closed out a nine-game homestand by beating the Kansas City Royals 6-1.
The White Sox completed a road trip on Thursday by splitting a doubleheader with the host New York Yankees. Chicago hit four homers while earning a 6-5 win in the opener before getting blanked 3-0 in the nightcap.
The Marlins are one victory shy of matching their longest winning streak in a decade. Miami won seven straight games in April 2016 and April 2022.
This run has vaulted the Marlins into second place in the National League East. Miami, which is celebrating the franchise's 30th anniversary, has never won the division despite having won World Series titles in 1997 and 2003.
Arraez went hitless in the Marlins' first win of their current streak, a 4-0 blanking of the Oakland Athletics on June 2. But the 26-year-old second baseman hit .667 (14-for-21) with nine RBIs over the past five games, raising his season average from .374 to .403.
Arraez is the first player with an average over .400 after June 1 since Chipper Jones in 2008.
"We have a guy hitting .400 and a Cy Young Award winner," Marlins manager Skip Schumaker said, the latter part a reference to Sandy Alcantara. "We have some good things going on as well. It is an exciting time to be here."
The White Sox, who are tied for third place in the American League Central, built some momentum during a season-high, five-game winning streak that ended Thursday night.
Chicago's starting pitchers posted a 1.16 ERA in the first four wins of the streak. The White Sox outscored the Detroit Tigers and the Yankees 20-10 during the run -- the team's longest since winning five straight from Aug. 12-16, 2022 -- before being limited to two hits in Thursday's second game.
"Any time you come into Yankee Stadium and win two out of three, obviously it's really good," White Sox manager Pedro Grifol said of the series. "We had a chance to take all three."
Perez earned a win on Saturday, when he allowed four hits over five scoreless innings as the Marlins beat the visiting Athletics 12-1.
Cease got a no-decision on Saturday after surrendering one run, two hits and three walks over 5 1/3 innings in Chicago's 2-1, 10-inning win over the visiting Tigers.
Neither starting pitcher has ever faced his Friday opponent.
--Field Level Media