Hero of the Game: John Buck (+.029 WPA+)
Goat of the Game: Nate Eovaldi (-.377 WPA+)
Play of the Game: Chipper Jones doubled in the bottom of the first. Reed Johnson and Jason Heyward scored.
Welcome to the N.L. East, Nate Eovaldi. In the newly-acquired twenty-two year old's second start in a Miami uniform, he only lasted two innings. The Marlins got eight hits,but only one run to show for it. Thunder and lightning added a forty-five minute delay to this game, which lasted almost three hours without the delay.
Nate Eovaldi got roughed up today. He threw a ton of pitches, and when he threw strikes, he didn't locate them. Not too much should be made of Eovaldi's start because of the conditions, and the fact that this is only his second game with a ballclub filled with unfamiliar faces.
Chipper Jones drove in the first two runs of the game for Atlanta when he stroked a ball into the left center field gap. Eovaldi left a 94 MPH fastball right down the middle, and Chipper showed why he's one of the best hitters of the last decade. It was a terrible pitch from Eovaldi, who might have been overthrowing, trying to make a good impression with the other Marlins.
Dan Uggla drove in the Braves third run of the game, when Eovaldi left a 3-2 fastball up in the zone. Any good hitter will be able to reach base most of the time if they get fed pitches like that. Also, throughout the game, Eovaldi struggled to find a consistent landing point with his foot. It was awkward, and something you're not accustomed to seeing major league pitchers struggle with.
After a Jason Heyward single plated Michael Bourn to score the Braves fourth run of the game, Freddie Freeman continued the hit parade. He got a 1-0 fastball from Eovaldi and pulled it down the left-field line for a double, scoring two runs. Another fastball that Eovaldi left in the middle of the plate turned into a line drive.
Other than Eovaldi's struggles and Reyes and Lee continuing to hit, there weren't many other things of note from this game from a Marlins' standpoint. Chad Gaudin pitched four shutout innings, allowing only one hit and Dan Jennings pitched two shutout innings, allowing only one hit, but other than that nothing big happened. Getting his first start with the Marlins, Gorkys Hernandez went 0-4 at the dish, but flashed his impressive speed chasing down a Chipper Jones double.
The Marlins will face the Nationals in Washington tomorrow for a doubleheader. Starting the first game for Miami will be the recently called up lefty Brad Hand, and John Lannan will start for Washington. Hand should be fun to watch, and he definitely deserves more attention from Marlins' fans. In the second game, Josh Johnson will start for Miami and Gio Gonzalez will take the mound for the Nat's. If that doesn't sound like a sexy doubleheader, I don't know what does.