Miami, FL—Following a complete game masterclass by Sandy Alcantara on Sunday in DC, the Marlins looked to tally back-to-back wins as they faced off against the Cubs for the first of three at home. With Edward Cabrera on the mound, the odds were in their favor.
Cabrera began the game by facing the minimum in the first two innings, using a double play to erase a leadoff walk in the second. Amidst the chaos, Miguel Rojas made a spectacular over-the-shoulder catch near the left field foul line on a pop-up by Ian Happ.
With two outs in the third, Cabrera allowed a first-pitch home run to Christopher Morel, followed by a hit-by-pitch and a double to drive in the second run to give the Cubs a 2-0 lead.
The offense exploded early to pick him up.
With one out in the bottom of the third, Jon Berti took flight for his fourth home run of the season to put the Marlins on the board, making the score 2-1. Charles Leblanc reached on a throwing error by Christopher Morel, Brian Anderson was hit by a pitch, Nick Fortes disintegrated his bat on an infield single, and the Marlins had the bases loaded for Bryan De La Cruz. With a full count, DLC cashed in with a grand slam to right center field. The second grand slam of his career, both coming against the Cubs. 5-2, Marlins.
Another walk and hit-by-pitch for Cabrera in the fourth were kept from scoring, and the bottom half of the Marlins order came up in the bottom of the fourth. Jordan Groshans walked, and Jerar Encarnación singled to put two on with no outs for Jon Berti. Berti singled, driving home Groshans and moving Jerar to third, and stole second base at the same time as Jerar scampered home on a wild pitch by Wade Miley with Charles Leblanc at the plate. The bases were loaded with no outs, but Jeremiah Estrada buckled down for three straight strikeouts to end the inning. It was 7-2 Marlins heading to the fifth.
Edward allowed a leadoff walk in the fifth, which came around to score on a Zach McKinstry double to make it 7-3, but he would get a strikeout and a ground ball to end the inning.
It looked as though Cabrera was grabbing at his side after trying to field the ball up the middle, but after the game, he said that it was just a small twinge and nothing major. He was removed from the game at that point anyway due to blisters forming on his middle finger.
His final line: 5.0 IP, 3 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 3 BB, 4 K, 1 HR, 2 HB, 79/46 P/S.
The offense tacked on one more in the seventh on three straight singles by Fortes, De La Cruz, and Rojas. A two-run home run by Leblanc in the eighth seemingly put the game out of reach.
Andrew Nardi got the first two outs in the ninth quite quickly, but then walked back-to-back hitters and allowed a single to load the bases. The Marlins had to get closer Dylan Floro warming up in the bullpen. Nardi buckled down and retired Ian Happ on a called third strike to end the ballgame. Final score: 10-3.
Noah’s Notes and What’s Next:
- The De La Cruise is BACK! He is the only player on the Marlins active roster with double-digit home runs.
- Please reserve your seat on the next voyage by DM’ing Jeremy Tache with the phrase “De La Cruise.”
- (Don’t actually do this: he might try to harm me...)
- Every single Marlin reached base at least once.
- Five batters reached at least three times.
- Charles Leblanc reached base four times.
- Jake Fishman was named to Team Israel for the upcoming World Baseball Classic!
- Bryan Hoeing made a SICK snag on a high chopper up the middle to end his inning.
- Jordan Groshans has a really good arm at third base and can pick it with the best of ‘em.