A Rookie of the Year, batting champion and three-time All-Star, Hanley Ramirez proved he could really hit during his time with the Florida/Miami Marlins. He also showed that he could really run.
On this day 15 years ago, Ramírez used his speed to lead the Florida Marlins to victory. After homering twice on the evening, his RBI bunt single in the 10th inning put the Marlins ahead for good in a 6-5 win over the Los Angeles Dodgers.
After a Miguel Cabrera RBI double in the top of the ninth drew Florida even, Ramírez stepped to the plate in the top of the 10th with two outs and runners on the corners at Dodger Stadium on July 6, 2007.
Facing Brett Tomko, Ramírez didn’t swing at the first pitch—he bunted it. Ramírez laid a perfect bunt down the third base line. Tony Abreu had no play as he picked up the ball. Pinch runner Eric Reed scored easily to give Florida a 6-5 lead.
In the bottom of the frame, the Dodgers made things interesting as Florida closer Kevin Gregg issued three straight two-out walks to load the bases. Gregg got out of the jam and earned the save by getting Juan Pierre—a former World Series champion with the Marlins—to pop out to end the contest.
It was Ramírez who got the scoring started with a lead-off home run on the game’s second pitch. The Marlins added two runs in the third on an RBI single from Mike Jacobs and an RBI groundout from Josh Willingham to go up 3-0.
After four solid innings, Marlins starting pitcher Dontrelle Willis ran into trouble in the fifth as the Dodgers pushed across five runs, four earned. Russell Martin’s two-run home run tied the game before the Dodgers went ahead on Luis González’s RBI double. González came around to score on a misplayed fly ball by Jeremy Hermida in right field.
Down 5-3, Ramírez’s second solo homer began the top of the seventh before Cabrera’s ninth-inning double ultimately tied the game. Renyel Pinto worked two innings of scoreless relief to pick up the win while Tomko took the loss for the Dodgers.
In addition to Ramírez, Jacobs also had three hits for the Marlins. Jeff Kent had a 3-for-4 night with a run scored for Los Angeles.
Over the course of 2007, the Marlins went an even 6-6 in extra innings. Their lone road win in such contests came courtesy of a 10th-inning bunt single and on this day 15 years ago.