Coming into last night’s game, the Marlins were looking to sweep the Phillies and continue a streak of 6 wins in their last 7 games. The match up between Aaron Nola and José Ureña ended up being a reminder that sometimes you’re just going to get flat beat. Losing 6-0 to the now 17-13 Phillies, puts the Marlins at 11-19 as they embark on a 6 game road series.
The Phillies got off to a quick start, with lead-off man Cesar Hernandez going yard on a 2-1 pitch. This proved to be the only run the Phillies would need as Aaron Nola shut the Marlins down after his messy first inning. Martin Prado and J.T. Realmuto produced back to back singles, but Justin Bour was out on a 110 mph line drive right to Aaron Altherr. Brian Anderson struck out swinging.
Ureña got both Carlos Santana on a fly ball to center and Maikel Franco on a ground ball to third. However the number seven hitter, Pedro Florimon, then doubled down the third base line. With Nola on deck, the Marlins decided to intentionally walk Jorge Alfaro to load the bases. Nola proceeded to hit a shot back to the mound, and Florimon would score on Urena’s throwing error to Justin Bour at first. The Marlins haven’t had luck with the intentional walk strategy this season, as it also yielded the only run during the 1-0 loss last week against the Rockies.
After catching Lewis Brinson stealing in the second, Nola would be perfect until the 8th inning. The Marlins struggled mightily against him as they weren’t able to get anyone on base throughout that time frame. It was hard to watch...
Ureña did actually settle in after the shaky start. While he did have several base runners, he allowed only 2 runs in the first, 1 of which was earned. He made it through the seventh inning with 7 hits, 1 walk, and 6 strikeouts. He was averagely efficient, throwing 108 pitches, which is one shy of his season-high. Additionally, he threw 82 strikes in last night’s effort, the most strikes he’s ever thrown at the major league level.
Junichi Tazawa was...not great. Maikel Franco doubled off Tazawa and drove in Altherr. Franco would move to third after Realmuto struggled with the relay throw home. He scored on the next at bat, as Florimon grounded out to first. The 4-0 lead gave the Phillies all the breathing room they would need.
Dillon Peters also struggled greatly, giving up three consecutive one-out singles to Hernandez, Rhys Hoskins, and Odubel Herrerra. The last single would drive in Hernandez and move Hoskins over to third. Altherr would proceed to hit a pop fly to center which led in Hoskins. It was like watching a very frustrating parade of red-clad adult men.
The Marlins had no fight whatsoever in the 9th inning, as Martin Prado would fly-out to center and JT Realmuto would roll a grounder to third that caught Cameron Maybin in the double play.
Swordfish: Aaron Nola (.435 WPA)
Flounder: Justin Bour (-.092 WPA)
Please leave any Icthy picks in the comments below (explainer). Yes, I’ll be updating everything on Saturday!
|José Ureña||Miami Marlins||33.0||4.91||4.05||7.09||0.4|
|Aaron Nola||Philadelphia Phillies||38.1||2.58||3.25||6.57||0.9|
|PHILADELPHIA PHILLIES||MIAMI MARLINS|
|Cesar Hernandez - 2B||Cameron Maybin - LF|
|Rhys Hoskins - LF||Martin Prado - 3B|
|Odubel Herrera - CF||J.T. Realmuto - C|
|Aaron Altherr - RF||Justin Bour - 1B|
|Carlos Santana - 1B||Brian Anderson - RF|
|Maikel Franco - 3B||Miguel Rojas - SS|
|Pedro Florimon - SS||Lewis Brinson - CF|
|Jorge Alfaro - C||Yadiel Rivera - 2B|
|Aaron Nola - RHP||Jose Urena - RHP|
José Ureña (0-4) is coming off of his best start against the Rockies where he allowed 1 run and struck out 5. He’ll look to establish himself as the Marlins’ ace as he continues his campaign in his last year of total team salary control. For the best analysis on him, check out Mitch Custer’s excellent piece from earlier this month.
Tonight we’ll see how the Marlins offense can handle Aaron Nola (3-1), an emergent force as one of baseball’s best starters. He initially struggled in his last outing against the Braves where he allowed 3 runs in the first inning. However, he would go on to settle in, pitch until the 8th inning, and the Phillies would take the W with a 7-3 victory.
Manager Gabe Kapler would say “There’s a very cool, calm, poised, collected leadership and that’s Nola. It doesn’t matter that he gives up three in the first. He’s just the same dude. He’s going to go back out there, continue to attack the zone and never get off his game. We saw it until the last moment of the game, the last pitch he delivered. It was the same guy with the same level of confidence. If you’re going to look at Jake (Arrieta’s) bold, strong, powerful leadership, you can also look to Nola’s calm, cool, poised leadership. Both are special in their own way.” Hopefully the Marlins will be able to dismantle that cool, calm Nola as they continue to look for their fifth consecutive victory.
If José Ureña was considered by many to be the Marlins’ “ace” at the start of the season, who do you think will be their “ace” by the end of the season?