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MIA 3, CLE 2; Marlins hold on late to sweep doubleheader

Miami wins yet another series while recording the 12th doubleheader sweep in franchise history.

Starting pitcher Braxton Garrett #29 of the Miami Marlins pitches during the first inning of the second game of a doubleheader against the Cleveland Guardians at Progressive Field on April 22, 2023 in Cleveland, Ohio. Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images

CLEVELAND, Ohio—After a series-opening win for the Marlins in Game 1, Braxton Garrett took the mound for the Marlins on Saturday night attempting to replicate that. The team was looking for a rare doubleheader sweep, and they got it. Behind a solid outing from Garrett and a crazy day at the plate from Garrett Hampson, the Marlins were able to take this one, 3-2.

The Game

The Guardians wasted no time getting runs on the board, as Oscar Gonzalez, also known as Spongebob in Cleveland, drove in Myles Straw to take a quick 1-0 lead. The Guardians had three singles and a fielder’s choice in the inning, but could only get one of those runners across.

Plesac and Garrett dueled for the next two innings, with the score still standing 1-0 entering the fourth. However, that quickly changed when the bottom of the lineup came to the plate. Nick Fortes drew a four-pitch, two-out walk. Garrett Hampson lined a double into the left-center gap, scoring Fortes easily. This ball left the bat at 102.2 mph. Tie game, 1-1.

The strike zone was not in favor of the Marlins tonight, and manager Skip Schumaker took notice. He got tossed for the first time as a manager during the top of the fifth. Bench coach Luis Urueta took over for Skip as the acting manager. Jazz Chisholm Jr. was also ejected by home plate umpire Dan Merzel, which was not seen on camera.

Avisail Garcia entered the game, taking Jazz’s spot in the lineup. Garcia took over in left, sliding De La Cruz into center field.

The bottom of the order worked its magic once again, starting with Jon Berti reaching on a leadoff double. Nick Fortes laid down the perfect bunt single to advance Berti to third, while Garrett Hampson continued his stellar game with another RBI hit, this time a single.

This forced Zach Plesac out of the game, ending his start tonight with a final line of 5.0 IP, 10 H, 3 ER, 2 BB, 5 K, and 90 pitches thrown. Garrett Hampson stole second and advanced to third on a 4-2 fielder’s choice from Avisail Garcia. Garrett Cooper then hit a sacrifice fly to bring in Hampson. 3-1, Marlins.

Braxton Garrett found himself in trouble during the sixth, which led to acting manager Luis Urueta pulling him with two outs in the inning. Tanner Scott got him out of trouble, as Garrett finished with a final line of 5.2 IP, 5 H, ER, BB, 3 K, and threw 82 pitches, with 60 of them going for strikes.

Miami Marlins v Cleveland Guardians - Game Two Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images

Tanner Scott did not have his best stuff tonight. His seventh inning started with a strikeout but then allowed back-to-back walks—including 10 straight balls at one point—which set up Steven Kwan to drive in a run on a single. Guardians still trailed, 3-2.

Dylan Floro came into the game with inherited runners for the first time this season and had no trouble with them. He forced a 6-4-3 double play to get out of the jam and keep the 3-2 lead intact.

Floro only needed 13 pitches to record five outs in this one. Drawing two double plays during his outing, he saved the game for Miami. His performance can’t be understated. What an outing from him.

A.J. Puk took care of business after finding some trouble early in the ninth, but he picked up his fourth save of the season, matching his career high in a season already. The JJ Bleday trade? Masterclass from GM Kim Ng. Miami wins this one, 3-2.

Skip and Jazz tossed

That’s now the second ejection for Jazz Chisholm Jr. through the first month of the season. This is also Skip Schumaker’s first managerial ejection. The dispute seemed to be over Dan Merzel’s pitcher-friendly strike zone, which could explain why Jazz struck out twice looking. It will definitely be interesting to see the Umpire Scorecards on Twitter tomorrow.

Big-Game Garrett Hampson

When this guy starts, he is lights out. Hampson now has six hits in his last five games played, along with four RBI. With Joey Wendle nearing a return to the active roster, it’ll be interesting to see what the Marlins do with him.

De La WOW! Monster day for Bryan De La Cruz

If you want to talk about guys that were ready for the doubleheader, Bryan De La Cruz is at the very top of the list. In both games combined, De La Cruz went 5-for-8, including a walk, four doubles, a home run, two runs, an RBI, and a stolen base. Massive day for him. He’s been arguably Miami’s best hitter this year not named Luis Arraez (closing the gap with Jorge Soler and Garrett Cooper). Coming into the season, he was the only one of Miami’s outfielders with a minor league option left. There’s no shot the Marlins use it if he keeps hitting like this.

Stat Pack

  • Miami left 12 runners on base in this one. It’s fairly hard to win a game with that many missed opportunities, but the Marlins were able to make do.
  • The Marlins weren’t great coming into this one when their opponent scored first, but are now 4-9 when the opponent strikes first.
  • However, the Marlins are now 9-0 when they lead through six innings, along with 10-0 after leading through seven, and 11-0 after leading through eight. This is a testament as to how great this bullpen has been all year.
  • Once again, my favorite stat to follow as of late: When the Marlins allow four or fewer runs, they’re 12-0. When they allow five or more runs, they’re 0-9.

What’s next?

The Marlins will wrap up the first series in this road trip Sunday at 1:40 p.m. EST. It’ll be a battle of lefties, with Jesus Luzardo looking to continue his hot start for Miami, while Logan Allen will take the mound for Cleveland for his major league debut.