Hero of the Game: Ricky Nolasco (0.394 WPA)
Goat of the Game: Nick Green (-0.119 WPA)
Play of the Game: Marcell Ozuna doubled to left, scoring Adeiny Hechavarria and Derek Dietrich (0.274 WPA)
Today's win came with a fair share of nervous pacing and hand wringing, but it thankfully marked the end of a horrible week for the Miami Marlins.
Ricky Nolasco delivered his best start of the season, allowing one run across eight innings, and striking out eleven Arizona batters. The last time Nolasco struck out eleven batters was May 6, 2011 against the Washington Nationals.
After wasting Tom Koehler's excellent performance yesterday, the Marlins bats managed just enough offense to send everyone home with smiling faces. Marcell Ozuna came through with an opportune double in the sixth, scoring Derek Dietrich and Adeiny Hechavarria.
Outside of the sixth inning, the Marlins bats were largely quiet. No player reached base more than once. No one would fairly accuse the Marlins hitters of being effective, but sometimes all one needs is mediocrity and good-timing.
The profuse sweating and elevated heart rates came in the ninth inning, when Nolasco led off the inning by surrendering a sharp double to right field. Mike Redmond decided he had seen enough, and pulled Nolasco from the game.
Steve Cishek came in, looking effective at first. He generated a ground out from Paul Goldschmidt, which advanced the runner to third. Unfortunately, the next out came at the expense of a run. Jason Kubel hit a sacrifice fly, bringing the score to 2-1. Cishek fell apart, giving up a single to Eric Chavez, and then a walk to Martin Prado.
Redmond went to the bullpen again so the right-handed Cishek wouldn't have to face the left-handed Miguel Montero. Mike Dunn was brought in, who proceeded to walk Montero, loading the bases with two outs. On a 3-2 count, Mike Dunn delivered a 94 mile per hour fastball to A.J Pollock, who grounded out to Hechavarria to end the game.
The Marlins just barely escaped would could have been a disastrous ending.
The Marlins will host the Philadelphia Phillies for a three-game series beginning tomorrow night at 7:10 PM. Alex Sanabia will take the mount against Cole Hamels.