The Fightin’ Fish rallied back against the Braves twice on Sunday afternoon, but shortstop Dansby Swanson sent them out of town with another series loss. Curtis Granderson’s clutch home run was quickly overshadowed by Swanson’s bases-loaded single in the bottom of the ninth. Adam Conley took the hard-luck loss for the Marlins in the 4-3 final.
- Caleb Smith: 6.0 IP, 4 H, 3 ER, 2 BB, 7 K (86 pitches)
- Sean Newcomb: 7.0 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 2 K (98 pitches)
Caleb Smith missed some bats (as always), particularly with his slider, but couldn’t keep the ball on the ground.
In the first inning, Freddie Freeman joined David Peralta and Christian Yelich as the only left-handed batters to hit a home run against him in the majors:
However, the Fish responded immediately. Smith recorded his first hit of the season, putting it in the optimal place at the optimal time. The bases-loaded single made it 2-1.
Caleb Smith helps out his own cause with an RBI infield single in the second inning!— FOX Sports Florida (@FOXSportsFL) April 7, 2019
Watch the @Marlins in action live now on FOX Sports Florida and FOX Sports Go!#JuntosMiami #PitchersWhoRake pic.twitter.com/8qmAVlNmWy
Miguel Rojas evened the score by drawing a walk.
The unlikely home run leader for the Braves so far in 2019, Swanson snuck his third one over the fence in left-center.
The Marlins’ bats went into hibernation for an entire half of this contest. Newcomb retired the final 14 batters he faced. Lewis Brinson and Peter O’Brien, to name a few, had very hittable pitches in the top of the sixth inning that they couldn’t fully square up (high fly outs from both of them).
Pinch-hitting for O’Brien against closer Arodys Vizcaino, Granderson took him out to the deepest part of SunTrust Park. The oldest player on the Marlins roster, he’s slashing an impressive .238/.393/.571 this season.
But those heroics only extended the game by a few minutes.
Backup catcher Chad Wallach allowed the bottom of the ninth to spiral out of control. He committed a catcher’s interference error with Ronald Acuña Jr. behind in the count; making contact with Acuña’s bat gave the $100 million outfielder a free base. That moved the lead runner Freeman into scoring position, who then advanced another 90 feet when Wallach allowed a passed ball during the next plate appearance. Nick Markakis eventually walked to load the bases with nobody out.
Swanson delivered the final blow from there:
Fish Picks answer key
The road trip continues in Cincinnati on Tuesday night. Right-handers José Ureña and Luis Castillo are the probable starters. It will also serve as a reunion between the Marlins and Derek Dietrich, their HBP king. First pitch approximately 6:40 p.m. ET.