The Marlins bats came out in force on Tuesday night to out slug the Oakland A’s for a much needed win in a dismal stretch for the Fish. Having scored 11 runs on 19 hits, could the Marlins keep the bats rolling during a Wednesday matinee? Certainly Edinson Volquez was hoping they would.
Volquez entered the game winless as a Marlin, with an 0-6 record with a 4.87 ERA; disappointing for a pitcher that looked to as an anchor of the starting staff.
Facing him was Sonny Gray, who had been the anchor of the A’s staff from 2014-2015. He was making his fifth start of this season, and was looking to solidify a comeback year after a year where he was mostly either on the disabled list, or giving sub par performances. He finished the 2016 season with a 5-11 record with a 5.69 ERA.
This year Gray entered the game with a 1-1 record and a 3.97 ERA. His stats would only improve after today. Gray held the Marlins to 3 hits and 1 run over 7 innings while striking out 11.
Otherwise, Gray spotted his mid-90s fastball well, while getting most of his strikeouts on a deep-diving breaking ball which kept the Marlins swinging wildly at balls in the dirt all day. As the Miami Herald reported, Don Mattingly noted this as well:
Things didn’t start off great for Volquez as Khris Davis smacked a 94 mph fast ball to right-center for a two run homer to give the A’s a 2-0 lead.
The Marlins got their only run of the day in the fourth when Dee Gordon scored fromcthird base on a wild pitch on a curve ball in the dirt which struck out Marcell Ozuna. Not exactly a highlight which will go down in Marlins history but at least it got them on the board.
Volquez would give up another run in the fifth when an 83 mph change up was lined to right field by Jed Lowrie for a double to give the A’s a 3-1 lead. Lowrie would then single against the struggling Brad Ziegler in the seventh to plate the A’s fourth run of the day. Overall, Mattingly was happy with the outing.
The Marlins only managed a total of four hits all day: a double by Ozuna, and singles by Bour, Gordon and Stanton. After Ryan Madson and Santiago Casilla came in to close out the game and earn a spit in the 2 game series, the Marlins had struck out 13 times as a team in the 4-1 loss.
On an upbeat note, Drew Steckenrider made his major league debut and the University of Tennessee product tossed a scoreless inning, while notching his first major league strikeout.
The Fish have off on Thursday, and return home to face the Angels on Friday night. Dan Straily will take the mound for the Fish.
Turning point of the game: Khris Davis’ two-run shot in the first
Star of the game: A’s starter Sonny Gray
Flounder: Marlins bats go cold in the light of day following the 19 hit barrage from the night before.