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JT Riddle’s 11th-inning blast the difference in Marlins win

A wild ending to the four-game series with an especially wild final inning. JT Riddle’s home run put the Marlins ahead for good.

MLB: Miami Marlins at St. Louis Cardinals Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

JT Riddle launched a two-run shot to right field in the top of the 11th off Cardinals lefty Andrew Miller and the Miami Marlins held on Thursday night for a thrilling 7-6 win.

Seeking a four-game series split at Busch Stadium, the Marlins called up Zac Gallen from Triple-A New Orleans to make his major league debut. Right-hander had been absolutely dominating the Pacific Coast League prior to the promotion, and he showed why. Gallen got leadoff batter Matt Carpenter to fly out, and struck out Paul DeJong swinging in the opening frame for his first career punchout.

In five innings of work, Gallen allowed one run on five hits, all while mowing down six Cardinal batters. Hetossed 61 strikes throughout 99 total pitches.

Gallen was the third Marlins prospect called up to the big leagues in the month of June, joining Elieser Hernandez and Jordan Yamamoto, both of whom earned wins against St. Louis.

On the flip side, veteran righty Adam Wainwright took the bump for the Redbirds. Wainwright lasted 5 13 innings, giving up three runs on six hits. Scoreless in the fourth, the Marlins jumped on the scoreboard, as Starlin Castro ripped a two-out double to deep center, scoring Garrett Cooper (Cooper exited the ballgame the following inning with left triceps tightness; he’s listed as day-to-day, per the Marlins, but another trip to the injured list is a possibility).

Paul DeJong evened the contest after driving home Wainwright with an RBI double.

Miami’s first two hitters reached base safely in the sixth: a Miguel Rojas single and a Harold Ramirez single. Brian Anderson torched an RBI double down the left field line, as the baseball was deflected off Carpenter’s glove, scoring Rojas and giving the Marlins a 2-1 edge. Cesar Puello, who started in right field for the first time as a Marlin, was hit by a pitch, forcing in another run and extending Miami’s lead to 3-1.

Miami’s relievers coughed up 4-1 and 5-3 leads after Gallen departed. Manager Don Mattingly plugged in seven relievers (with mixed results): Austin Brice, Wei-Yin Chen, Nick Anderson, José Quijada, Tayron Guerrero, Jarlin García and Sergio Romo, who recorded his 13th save in 14 attempts.

Riddle’s clutch game-winning homer was his first in the majors since the opening week of the 2019 season and the only one he’s hit in a road game:

Romo, facing the meat of the Cardinals order, picked off pinch-runner Jack Flaherty at second base for the final out. Flaherty represented the tying run.

Miami will open a weekend series against the Philadelphia Phillies Friday night through Sunday afternoon. Sandy Alcantara, coming off a no-decision versus Pittsburgh on Father’s Day, will take the ball. The Phillies, riding a current four-game losing slide, will turn to Aaron Nola, who is 6-1 on the year thus far. First pitch is scheduled for 7:10 p.m.

Marlins vs. Cardinals box score (Baseball Theater)

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