Hero of the Game: Logan Morrison (0.222 WPA)
Goat of the Game: Tom Koehler (-0.242 WPA)
Play of the Game: Donovan Solano grounded into a double play in the fifth inning. Giancarlo Stanton advanced to third base. Logan Morrison out at second. (-0.157 WPA)
The Miami Marlins allowed a lot of runs early in this game. Tom Koehler looked like he was destined for an early exit, as he gave up three runs in the first inning to the Pittsburgh Pirates. That turned into five runs by the third inning, giving the Pirates an early 5-1 lead. It seemed like we were on our way to another blowout loss.
But the Fish mounted a fierce comeback in the bottom of that inning to rally and come close. It started with a Christian Yelich single that turned into two on an error by Andrew McCutchen. Giancarlo Stanton hit one of his two doubles to drive in Yelich; Stanton had three hits on the night along with a walk. The hit parade continued as Logan Morrison and Placido Polanco each brought home runs with singles as the Fish pulled themselves back in the game, this time down 5-4.
But the offense could not muster much more after that, thanks to some blown opportunities. With the score still 5-4 in the fifth inning, it seemed Miami was inching their way towards more runs. Stanton and Morrison led off with back-to-back singles to start the frame. But Donovan Solano hit a crucial double play that killed the rally and the Marlins failed to bring Stanton home afterward.
That ended up being the most high-impact play of the game, because the very next inning, Neil Walker would double home Starling Marte against reliever Ryan Webb and begin putting this game out of reach, The Marlins only got two hits and two walks after the fifth as the Pirates added two runs to make the final a 7-4 Miami loss.
Tomorrow the Fish and Pirates will conclude their series with a spectacular young pitchers matchup between former top prospects Jose Fernandez and Gerrit Cole.