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Uncharacteristic performance by Fernandez dooms Marlins, 8-3

Proceed with caution

Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

It was an active first inning for both the Miami Marlins and Cleveland Indians.  Christian Yelich gave the Marlins a 2-0 lead when he nailed his first pitch into the center gap, scoring Ichiro and Martin Prado.  The Fish added another run when, making his first appearance since being reinstated from the DL, Derek Dietrich sacrificed a fly-ball to score Yelich.

Things started beautifully, if surprisingly, for a Marlins team struggling so much for runs, but it turned just as surprisingly unpleasant.  In his first inning, Jose Fernandez allowed three straight hits and two runs before securing his first out.  In between doubles by Coco Crisp and Francisco Lindor, Jason Kipnis launched a two-run homer.

Whereas Trevor Bauer settled down in the second, Fernandez surrendered another run when Roberto Perez doubled to right, scoring Tyler Naquin and tying the game.  Cleveland continued to pepper Fernandez.  In the third, Lindor notched his second double, and Carlos Santana scored him with a single to take the lead, 4-3.  All with no outs.  Then, with one out, Abraham Almonte sacrificed to right to score Santana.

The Marlins' offense failed to produce another hit while Fernandez managed only temporarily to prevent circumstances from worsening.  In the sixth inning, with two outs, Lindor singled to score Crisp as Kipnis captured third, but Ichiro's throwing error (first as a Marlin) sent Kipnis across home plate for an automatic score.

Fernandez ended the night on 114 pitches, allowed seven earned runs on twelve hits, walked one, and struck out five.

In the eighth, the Indians added one more as Crisp scored his second run of the night when Jeff Mathis' foot slipped off home plate.  Originally called out, it was overturned on replay.

After that wobbly first inning, Bauer was stellar.  He ultimately lasted 8 1/3 innings, allowed three earned runs on four hits, walked three, and struck out four.

The Marlins ended the night with four hits (two by Ichiro), and three errors.  With the St. Louis Cardinals getting pummeled by the Cincinnati Reds 9-1, the Marlins again lost an opportunity to gain ground in the wild card race.

Tom Koehler (9-10) will face Danny Salazar (11-6) in the series finale tomorrow at 4:10.