Today the Marlins offense proved its existence to the world and to the Washington Nationals pitching staff. Unfortunately, like water on Mars, runs for the Marlins were not exactly as plentiful as many scientists or fans had hoped.
It was the top of the second inning. Nineteen innings had passed in the 2013 season and yet zero runs had been tallied in the Marlins row of the linescore, any linescore. If the Marlins wanted to keep from going 20 innings without a run, something needed to happen soon, and soon something did. Justin Ruggiano, 2012 breakout and 2013 platoon outfielder stepped into the batter's box. Justin Ruggiano was set on doing the impossible.
Justin Zimmerman was on the mound for the Nationals and set to face Justin Ruggiano. Little did he know that the ball he was holding in his glove would find its way into the stands in the coming seconds. At any rate, Justin Zimmerman went into his windup and sent a 93 MPH fastball towards catcher Wilson Ramo's mitt. But it didn't matter. Ruggiano was there to hit, and hit he did. The ball was sent over the second baseman's head, over the outfielders and over the wall.
The Marlins had scored.
The Rest of The Game
The rest of the game did not go as well for the Marlins as their first at-bat in the second inning. Wade LeBlanc got the start for the Marlins and he went five innings, striking out five and walking two and giving up two earned runs to earn the loss. Then a series of Jon Rauch, Mike Dunn and Steve Cishek came in to pitch the remainder of the game for the Marlins. Rauch and Dunn combined to give up four runs, three hits and a walk in two innings. In Cishek's one inning he struck out two Nationals in what was about as good of an outing as anyone could have hoped for. Unfortunately by the time Cishek got involved in the game the Nationals already had a five run lead.
Offensively, the Marlins actually had a pretty decent game. Eight hits and 17 left on base is not terrible and the Marlins had a few good opportunities to score some runs. Adeiny Hechivarria in particular had some tough luck, getting two hits but also hitting into a pair of 6-3 double plays. Also, as touched upon above, Justin Ruggiano connected for his first home run of the season, giving the Marlins their first run of the season.
The Marlins head to New York where they will send Alex Sanabia to the mound against Jeremy Hefner and rest of the Metropolitans. The Mets are not expected to be nearly as good of a team as the reigning NL East champion Nationals so look for the Marlins to score some more runs and (fingers crossed) win some games.