The Miami Marlins looked all but beat in tonight's contest versus the Pittsburgh Pirates, as the Fish were tossed aside early in the game with Nathan Eovaldi on the mound. Eovaldi gave up a first-inning home run to Starling Marte that put the Pirates up 2-0 early, and then the Marlins' defense did not help in picking up an error and some other ineffective play. An error by Adeiny Hechavarria in the third inning helped contribute another run to the Pirates, extending their lead at the time to 3-1.
The Marlins scored a run in the bottom of the third on a solo home run by Giancarlo Stanton, his 19th of the season. Stanton regained the home run lead in the National League with his latest bomb, which was a shot sent to right-center field that just cleared the fence among the deepest areas of the park.
Eovaldi ended the day with three strikeouts versus one walk, but he required more than 90 pitches and was unable to clear the fifth inning before he gave up singles to Marte and Gregory Polanco and a backbreaking two-run double to Ike Davis. The Pirates eventually took a seemingly insurmountable 6-2 lead.
That lead held until the ninth inning, when the Marlins took apart the Pirates' bullpen. Starter Jeff Locke left the game after eight innings of two-run ball, and Justin Wilson took over. Wilson then walked Marcell Ozuna and Hechavarria, and Jason Grilli came in and walked Jeff Mathis to load the bases before Ed Lucas delivered the first run of the frame on a fielder's choice. After a Rafael Furcal walk (his only time on base), Reed Johnson singled home two runs to make it a 6-5 game. With two outs and a runner on first base, Giancarlo Stanton was intentionally walked to load the bases, and Casey McGehee delivered with an emphatic walk to tie the game at six a piece.
The game remained tied until the 13th inning, when Gregory Polanco untied it with his first Major League home run of his career. The shot came off of lefty Mike Dunn, who came in at the tail end of a fantastic run by the bullpen. Prior to that, A,J, Ramos, Steve Cishek, Chris Hatcher, and Dan Jennings had combined for 7 1/3 innings pitched and 13 strikeouts versus one walk, including five whiffs in two innings for Hatcher. But the last man out of the pen struggled, and the Marlins went quietly in the ninth for their second straight loss.
Christian Yelich left the game after the first inning with an apparent back strain, but no other news on severity of injury came during the game.
Hero of the Game: Casey McGehee (0.454 WPA)
Goat of the Game: Mike Dunn (-0.430 WPA)
Play of the Game: Casey McGehee walks with the bases loaded in the ninth inning. (+0.397 WPA)