Friday, August 11th 2017. A day that every Marlins fan will always remember. It started with the long awaited news that owner Jeffrey Loria had agreed to sell the team to Bruce Sherman and Derek Jeter. To top it off, the day ended with a 6-3 victory over the very talented Colorado Rockies (65-50). If you are a fan of the Fish, today was a great day for you.
On the mound for the Marlins (54-60) was Jose Urena, who once again pitched pretty well. He gave up three runs on only two swings. Nolan Arenado took a fastball on the outside corner and deposited it into the right field seats for a two-run homer. It wasn’t a bad pitch but that’s what good hitters do; they take the ball where it is thrown. On that swing he become the first player in baseball this season to cross the century mark in RBIs (On August 11th!). The other run came on a lame duck hanging slider that got way too much plate. Gerardo Parra wacked a solo shot to right field give the Rockies another run in the sixth inning.
Don Mattingly would take the ball from Ureña after he allowed to baserunners following the Parra homer. His final line on the evening: 5.1 IP, 6 H, 3 ER, 1 BB, 3 K (98 Pitches, 57 Strikes). Another decent outing from the young right-hander.
Dustin McGowan would come into the game to try to put out the fire and he did exactly that. He struck out Trevor Story and Jon Gray to escape the jam.
Trailing 3-1 in the bottom of the sixth, stepping up to the plate with one out and nobody on was the hottest hitter in baseball. Giancarlo Stanton decided to play nice and only hit a 433 foot homer this time. Gray should feel lucky, that seems tame for the major league leader in homers. That was Stanton’s 40th home run on the season to pad his lead over Aaron Judge to five. More importantly, it made it a one run game.
Three batters later, the Marlins would knot the game up at three. Christian Yelich followed Stanton’s homer with a double to left field. He advanced to third base on a wild pitch and scored on a J.T. Realmuto sac-fly. That’s how you do it!
McGowan, Jarlin Garcia, and Junichi Tazawa (W, 2-2) shut the Rockies down with relative ease in the seventh and eighth innings. Something we haven’t seen enough of this year; the bullpen keeping it tied so the offense can get the job done.
Jake McGee (L, 0-2) came into pitch for the Rockies and was greeted with a leadoff single by Yelich. Marcell Ozuna drew a seven pitch walk to put the pressure squarely on the Rockies. Ozuna reached base in all four of his at-bats on Friday evening. After Realmuto was retired on a flyout to left, Derek Dietrich stepped up to the plate looking to be the hero. He did not disappoint. After getting behind in the count 0-2, Dietrich blooped a single into centerfield to give the Marlins the lead for good.
Yelich came to the plate and the Marlins took a 4-3 lead. Just for good measure, the Marlins tacked on two insurance runs thanks to Tomas Telis. He came up big with a two-run triple to give the Fish a three-run cushion. Taking a one run lead feels pretty good, but a three run lead feels so much better.
Brad Ziegler took the mound for the ninth inning, looking to convert his third save of the season. He allowed an infield single to Trevor Story but nothing more; putting the bow on another victory for the Marlins.
The Marlins collected 11 hits in the game; all but one coming from five hitters. Stanton, Yelich, Ozuna, Dietrich, and Telis each had two hits on the evening. Dee Gordon was the lone batter with a single hit.
Here is the Fangraphs win expectancy graph:
The two teams will be back in action on Saturday at 7:10 PM EST. It will be Jeff Hoffman pitching for the Rockies and Justin Nicolino going for the Marlins.