MIAMI (AP) - The St. Louis Cardinals and the Florida Marlins are the last two NL teams to win World Series titles, but both still have work to do if they want to have a chance to play in October this year.
The Marlins continue a stretch of 13 straight games against teams with winning records when they host the Cardinals in the opener of a four-game series today.
The NL has won just two of the last six World Series, but it was Florida that beat the New York Yankees in 2003 and St. Louis that defeated heavily favored Detroit in 2006.
After losing series to fellow contenders over the weekend, however, both clubs find themselves with ground to make up in a tight race for the NL's four postseason berths.
The Marlins (62-56) salvaged the final game of a six-game road trip with an eight-two win over the New York Mets yesterday, but they still dropped two of three at Shea Stadium, sinking a half-game behind the second-place Mets and two-and-a-half behind NL East-leading Philadelphia.