The final Sunday home game the Marlins would play in 2022 was eventual in more ways than one.
Overshadowing the game between the lines - one Miami dropped to the Nationals, 6-1 - was the news that longtime manager Don Mattingly would not be returning in 2023.
“It’s time for a new voice,” said Mattingly. “I’d characterize my time here as disappointing. I came here to build something, something that when I left, I felt could be sustained.”
"You try to follow your heart."— Bally Sports Florida: Marlins (@BallyMarlins) September 25, 2022
Don Mattingly addresses the media after Sunday's loss about the mutual decision to not return as manager for the Miami Marlins next season. #MakeItMiami pic.twitter.com/xUZxFmjrth
Sunday also marked the six-year anniversary of the passing of Jose Fernández. The late-Marlins ace, who, along with Eduardo Rivero and Emilio Jesus Macias, died in a boating accident off of Miami Beach, was 24 at the time of the fatal event.
“Six years ago today, we lost a very important member of this clubhouse,” said shortstop Miguel Rojas.
Speaking on the Mattingly news, Rojas reflected back to his days coming up in Los Angeles through their time with the Marlins - with Rojas being the only active Marlin to be here through the entirety of Mattingly’s tenure - calling him a “father on the field.”
To a far lesser extent, the team experienced another loss, this time to starter Edward Cabrera, who departed from his 13th outing of the season after just 3.2 innings and 52 pitches due to an apparent ankle injury.
Here is the play where Cabrera sustained the injury. Fell right on his plant leg. pic.twitter.com/CeVnHbLADr— Louis Addeo-Weiss (@addeo_louis00) September 25, 2022
Former Marlin Aníbal Sánchez made his second start in as many Sundays against his former club, penning 5 shutout innings of 4 strikeouts to collect his 115th career victory. In his last two outings against Miami, Sánchez has allowed 2 runs over 11 innings, lowering his season ERA from 4.40-to-4.06 in the process.
As has been the case for the team this season, runs were hard to come by in the loss. The only Marlins run came on an 8th-inning solo home run off the bat of Lewin Díaz. Bryan De La Cruz continued his torrid stretch of hitting, collecting two hits. Since being recalled from AAA at the start of September, De La Cruz has hit .388 with 4 home runs in 55 plate appearances.
The Nationals would avoid their 100th loss of the season thanks to an early Joey Meneses two-run homer that proved the difference. The Marlins would, however, match a single-season franchise record with 15 wins against Washington.
With no game scheduled for Monday, the Marlins will travel to New York ahead of their final series of the season against the Mets. In Tuesday’s series opener, Pablo López (9-10, 3.88 ERA) will take the mound in search of his first 10-win season. The Mets have yet to announce a starter for the scheduled 7:10 E series opener.
- Ahead of the first pitch Sunday, the club announced it would not be retaining manager Don Mattingly’s services for the 2023 season, effectively ending his seven-season tenure with the club at the conclusion of the regular season. Mattingly leaves as the team’s all-time leader in games managed, wins, and losses.
- Díaz’s 8th inning home run gave the Marlins their 136th long ball of the season. Of the 15 NL teams, only their opponent Sunday, the Nationals (130) have hit fewer.
- In 12 career starts against the Marlins, Aníbal Sánchez has a 2.80 ERA over 61 innings pitched. Among pitchers with at least 10 games started against them, this mark ranks 21st all-time.