Edgar Renteria is probably still the proud owner of the most famous walk-off hit in Florida/Miami Marlins history. Renteria’s single in Game 7 of the 1997 World Series gave the franchise its first world championship.
The first walk-off hit in club history, however, came courtesy of another Renteria. On this day 30 years ago, Rick Renteria delivered the dagger in the 12th inning as the Florida Marlins topped the Colorado Rockies, 7-6.
Neither team had scored since the seventh inning as the Marlins came to bat in the bottom of the 12th at Joe Robbie Stadium on May 1, 1993. After Gary Wayne had stranded a Florida runner in scoring position in each of the two previous innings, Colorado turned to right-hander Steve Reed.
Reed was able to get Benito Santiago to fly out to begin the inning, but a single by Jeff Conine and a walk to Monty Fariss put the winning run in scoring position for the third straight inning. On the second pitch from Reed, Walt Weiss grounded out to put two runners in scoring position.
Renteria wouldn’t make it so easy for Reed, however. Reed was able to get ahead in the count, but Renteria fought off one pitch after another. On the 12th pitch of the at-bat, Renteria finally won the battle as he lined the 2-2 pitch into left field for the game-winning RBI single.
The walk-off hit, however, wouldn’t serve as the only first for the Marlins that evening. Trailing 3-2 in the fifth inning, Florida went ahead for the first time on a grand slam by Jeff Conine – the first in franchise history.
Trailing 6-3, the Rockies evened the game with three runs in the seventh. Andres Galarraga and Charlie Hayes came up with RBI singles before Joe Girardi, a future Marlins manager, tied the game with an RBI groundout. Girardi (3) and Hayes (2) combined to drive in five of the six Colorado runs.
For the Marlins, Conine finished with three hits and three runs scored. Chuck Carr added two hits. Closer Bryan Harvey worked two scoreless innings of relief to pick up his first win.
Renteria’s 12th-inning single not only gave the Marlins their first walk-off win but it also served as their first extra-inning victory. It came on this day three decades ago.