The look on manager Don Mattingly’s face postgame was one that could be best described as anti-reticent with the skipper displaying signs of both physical and mental exhaustion following the club’s 8-7 loss.
For Miami, who entered the 9th inning with a 7-3 lead, the team now falls to 35-47 overall; All of this, despite having a +20 run differential. All-time, the Fish now fall to 13-15 on Independence Day.
“We can’t get this one back,” uttered Mattingly in the team’s 19th loss in one-run games this season.
The first two games of this most recent Marlins-Braves series have been personified by two narratives; Ronald Acūna Jr.’s inability to hit the high-and-inside fastball, and the continued presence of the Marlins’ pitching.
Between Friday and Saturday, the Miami pitching staff limited the Atlanta offense to merely 10 hits and 3 runs; however, the Fish have only managed a split in those two contests. This, though, is keeping with the Marlins’ inability to consistently score, as noted by their 3.93 runs per game entering Sunday (28th).
On this 4th of July, though, the Marlins first since 2019, the bats would come alive courtesy of the team’s three home runs and seven runs scored.
Following a two-run home run by the aforementioned Acūna Jr. in the bottom of the third off of Zach Thompson, Starling Marté would walk and proceed to steal his 13th stolen base of the season with a swipe of 2nd. Marté would eventually be driven in by Adam Duvall, giving the Marlins their first run of the game.
Duvall would later give Miami a 4-3 lead with his 19th home run of the season in the 6th. His 6 three-run homers are now tied with Boston third baseman Rafael Devers for most in the sport. With the long ball, Duvall now leads the National League in RBI with 60.
T H E S W E E T E S T S W I N G— Bally Sports Florida: Marlins (@BallyMarlins) July 4, 2021
Adam Duvall’s 19th HR of the year pic.twitter.com/1sX9SBgMIz
As for the above-noted Thompson, the right-hander continued to perform at the Major League level, limiting Atlanta to 3 runs over 6 innings, striking out 6. In two outings against the Braves this season, Thompson owns a 2.45 ERA over 11 innings pitched.
Closer Yimi García would, however, be unable to maintain the Atlanta bats in what would wind up being a four-run 9th, blowing his third save since May 27. Since then, García owns a 7.94 ERA, allowing 10 runs over 11 1⁄3 innings pitched.
Come the 10th inning, and with the Atlanta bench having been emptied, manager Brian Snitker turned to starting pitcher Max Fried to pinch-hit. Fried, a respectable .189 hitter as a pitcher, delivered a walk-off single at the hands of Anthony Bass, giving the Braves the individual and series win.
Prior to Fried’s game-winning hit, the Marlins had a call overturned that would’ve scored the winning run via a past ball thrown by Bass.
MAX FRIED WALKS IT OFF. pic.twitter.com/UcxO6wx0An— Bally Sports: Braves (@BravesOnBally) July 4, 2021
Things don’t get easier for the Marlins as they head home to begin a four-game set against the reigning champion Los Angeles Dodgers Monday, who are riding a season-best 9-game winning streak. Newly named All-Star Trevor Rogers will square off against Walker Buehler with first pitched slated for 6:40 p.m. Eastern.
- Zach Thompson