The Miami Marlins wasted perhaps Trevor Rogers’ best start since officially being named an All-Star on July 4. Rogers struck out 10 in 5 1⁄3 innings while allowing just one earned run.
He missed about a month’s worth of starts in August while dealing with a personal family issue. When he returned, he still looked effective, but not as dominant as he did earlier in the season when he was garnering Rookie of the Year consideration.
But Tuesday night, he looked to be back in good form. He pitched through 5 innings for the first time since Jul. 20.
“I finally felt like my normal self from earlier in the season,” Rogers said. “Took me a while to get my feet back underneath me. Nick (Fortes) and I had a great game plan going into today’s game. All my pitches were really working today. Definitely a good confidence booster going into my last two starts of the year.”
Rogers’ shutout bid came to an end in the sixth inning when Alcides Escobar led off with a walk and Josh Bell reached on an error by shortstop Miguel Rojas. Escobar scored on a scary collision with Nick Fortes at home plate.
Lewis Brinson threw home from left field. The throw was a few feet off target, forcing Fortes to get in the basepath and in the way on Escobar, leading to a collision that saw both of them lay on the ground for a couple of minutes. Fortunately, both players were able to get up and remain in the game.
Fortes struggled behind the dish, allowing two passed balls. But once again, he showed promise with his bat, something the Marlins have not seen from the catcher’s position all year. In his second career game, he hit another home run—a no-doubter to left field. According to the Marlins, Fortes is the first Marlin to hit a home run in his first two career starts.
That sixth inning is when things started to unravel for Miami. Anthony Bass came in and allowed two runs, both of which were inherited runners.
The bullpen gave up the final nail in the coffin when Taylor Williams gave up three runs in the ninth, uncorking two wild pitches in the process.
The Marlins offense had a couple of chances to put more runs on the board, including a bases loaded situation in the eighth. But alas, Jesus Sanchez grounded out to second base.
The Marlins officially lost the season series to the Washington Nationals, 8-10, though still lead them by two games in the NL East standings. They face each other again Wednesday at 6:40 p.m. Elieser Hernandez will take the mound against Josiah Gray.
- Juan Soto