Nothing compares with the rush of tuning in to live Marlins games. But as you are all aware, unfortunate circumstances have delayed the start of the 2020 regular season. Need help filling that void? Fish Stripes will be presenting full-length FOX Sports Florida broadcasts from the 2010-2019 Marlins seasons.
The “Games of the Decade” series is a collaborative process between the Fish Stripes staff and audience. Please continue recommending games that deserve to be rewatched!
The Marlins saw this matchup with the Diamondbacks as a measuring stick. Despite the most expensive roster in franchise history, they had stumbled through the first quarter of the regular season, plunging as far as 13 games below the .500 mark. But series victories over the Angels and Phillies had them on the path back to relevance. Holding their own against a legitimate contender like the D-backs would really put the exclamation point on their best homestand of 2017!
The Marlins had lost eight of the 10 games started by Edinson Vólquez, squandering his adequate individual contributions by averaging a pathetic 2.3 runs of support in those contests. He was seemingly overdue for some good fortune.
First batter of the afternoon—first swing of the afternoon—Rey Fuentes pulled a grounder to Justin Bour. Vólquez covered the bag, Bour’s toss to him was on time and on target. But Vólquez’s momentum took him directly into Fuentes’ running lane. They collided and Vólquez landed awkwardly on his right ankle.
After a brief pause in gameplay, he was determined to keep competing.
Vólquez couldn’t hide the discomfort on his face, but didn’t use it as an excuse, either.
Through three innings, both starters were efficient and putting up zeroes. One pass through their talented lineup, the Marlins hadn’t advanced anybody into scoring position against Arizona right-hander Randall Delgado.
Then came the all-important top of the fourth.
That pesky Fuentes guy led off with a sharp grounder to the right side, forcing Dee Gordon into a dive. Gordon regained his balance and threw from his knees to complete the play. If any step in that process had gone awry, it would have been ruled a clean single, snapping the no-hit bid.
Testing Vólquez’s ankle and reaction time, David Peralta grounded a fastball back to the mound. The glove was conveniently in the right spot.
The most intimidating opponent for the Fish to deal with was going to be Paul Goldschmidt. An elite blend of power and plate discipline, he entered the game with a 1.005 OPS. Goldschmidt’s skill set included speed, too, as he reminded everybody with a high chopper in front of the plate. JT Riddle hurried the throw, which brought Bour off the bag.
Did he apply the tag in time?
Yes, he did, the umpires decided after a replay review.
Vólquez lost perfection in the fifth by issuing a leadoff walk to Jake Lamb. Chris Herrmann also drew a base on balls in the eighth. In both instances, they were erased on Brandon Drury ground ball double plays.
Run support arrived in the bottom of the fourth via a soft Bour line drive that scored Giancarlo Stanton. Then, some insurance in the eighth. Singles by Marcell Ozuna and Bour chased home Stanton and Christian Yelich, respectively. The lead swelled to 3-0.
Miami wasn’t in the clear yet, with D-backs pinch-hitters looming and lots of fatigued arms in Don Mattingly’s bullpen. Vólquez made the stressful situation look easy, striking out the side—all of them swinging—to finish off the no-no.
Full FOX Sports Florida game broadcast (with Rich Waltz, Todd Hollandsworth and Craig Minervini)
TL;DW (Too Long; Didn’t Watch)
- Their have been hundreds of no-hitters in MLB history, but this one belongs in select company. Vólquez faced the minimum 27 batters. According to Baseball-Reference, these are the only pitchers since 1900 to do that while also getting a hit themselves in the game: Vólquez, Matt Cain, Dennis Martínez, Terry Mulholland, Catfish Hunter, Sandy Koufax, Jim Bunning, Lew Burdette, Chief Bender and Cy Young.
- Speaking to the media postgame, Vólquez dedicated the performance to the late Yordano Ventura and José Fernández. He had been teammates with Ventura on the Royals, and this day would have been the Dominican right-hander’s 26th birthday; Fernández passed away the year before, leaving behind an unfathomable track record of dominance at Marlins Park.
The “Games of the Decade” series is also available as a YouTube playlist (games listed there in chronological order)