When you find something that works, it is human nature to keep doing it, and doing it the Marlins are. Of course, I'm talking about the walk-off win.
Let's see how it happened this time.
Chris Volstad started out a little off-kilter, giving up an one out walk to Jason Heyward. Eric Hinske then followed with a single to move Heyward to third. Brian McCann (I'm starting to hate that guy) singled in Heyward to give the Braves the early lead in the first. 1-0 Braves.
In third Hinske led off with home run to make the score 2-0 Braves, and Jair Jurrjens continued to mow down the Marlins in the very early innings. At this early point in the game, the thoughts of the average Marlin fan (meaning me) were: Oh, crap. Not another one of these.
Then in the fourth something happened, not sure of the cause, but all of a sudden Jurrjens became mortal. With one out Hanley Ramirez singled to center and Dan Uggla walked. Cody Ross took his turn at the plate and going with the pitch he singled to right to drive home Hanley. But it wouldn't stop there. Wes Helms followed with a shot to the center-left gap for a triple that scored Danny and Cody. With Helms at third and one out, the Braves decided to setup the double play possibility by walking Mike Stanton. I guess their thinking was the next hitter is the backup catcher who almost never plays. What they didn't count on was that backup catcher was none other than Brad Davis, and Brad knows what to do with the bat. Davis laced a single to right to plate Helms. When the mud had settled, it was the Marlins 4, Braves 2 after four.
The pitchers dominated until the sixth when Volstad with one out gave up a double to Troy Glaus, which he followed by nailing Alex Gonzalez with a pitch and walking Brooks Conrad. Melky Cabrera kept the party going by hitting a sac fly to center to score Glaus. Fortunately Jurrjens was next to the plate. Jurrjens is a good pitcher but he is not much of a hitter, and he flew out to Cody to end the inning. 4-3 Marlins.
The score stood until the eighth when Clay Hensley retired the first two batters only to give up a double to Cabrera. Now, it was the pitcher's spot. While Jurrjens may not be much of a hitter, the guy they sent up to bat for him is: Chipper Jones. Chipper double to deep center to tie the score. After eight, 4-4 Marlins. (Hey, it is a Marlins site.)
The game would go into extra innings since there was no scoring in the ninth, or for that matter the tenth. But then the eleventh inning made a showing and it went something like this:
With Jorge Sosa on the mound and one out, David Ross singled to center. Martin Prado followed with a single of his own to left. Ross to second. Heyward on the second pitch singled to right to load the bases with one out. For most normal teams this would be a cause of concern, but the Marlins are hot right now and so it was barely a nuisance. Sosa got Nate McLouth to hit a ground ball to Hanley who whipped it to Danny and who fired it to Gaby. Top half of the inning over. No problem.
In the bottom of the eleventh, Hanley led of with a single. Danny followed suit to put runners at the corners with no outs. The Braves intentionally walked Cody to setup a force out at any base. So with the infield drawn in, Helms took his turn at bat. Wes slapped the ball between the third baseman and short stop to give the Marlins their fourth walk-off win in the last seven games.
Of course the usual walk-off celebrating ensued, but there would be more.
The Florida Marlins’ latest pie-in-the-face celebration came with a twist: Wes Helms(notes) was a target twice, the second time when his 7-year-old son delivered a platter of shaving cream to dad’s face in the clubhouse.
"He more punched me than pied me," Helms said with a grin.
The Marlins are once again back to .500. The way the Marlins go about winning these games is going to age us all, but we are having fun in the process.
Anyone see my blood pressure medication?