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MIA 10, COL 2: Rocky Mountain High

Strong Sandy, Soler, and surprise Davis all star in route of Rockies.

Miami Marlins v Colorado Rockies Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images

The last time Sandy Alcantara stood on the pitcher’s mound at Coors Field on August 6, 2021, then-manager Don Mattingly took the ball from his ace in what, to this day, remains a career-worst outing.

Lasting just 3.2 innings, the future unanimous NL Cy Young coughed up 10 runs on 10 hits, surrendering 3 home runs. By Game Score - of which Sandy totaled a score of 0 - it was and still sits as the worst single-game low in his seven-season career.

After he got third baseman Ryan McMahon to fly out to end the 6th, Alcantara could walk off the mound knowing he redeemed himself in the stadium that pitchers have night sweats ahead of their starts there.

The Marlins ace allowed just 2 runs over 6 strong innings, scattering 4 hits and 3 walks in Miami’s 10-2 win over the Rockies to get the club back to .500 at 25-25. The victory made for Alcantara’s first since April 4th, snapping a streak of 7 consecutive winless outings in a game where the Fish eclipsed double-digit runs for the first time all season.

“The two-seamer was really good, and obviously the changeup was effective...I thought he really settled in after the 2nd inning,” said Skip Schumaker.

But while Alcantara’s resilient outing makes for an important storyline to follow as the season truggs along, it served as a mere footnote to what was a first day at the office to remember for Jonathan Davis.

For Davis, a career .185 hitter in 350 plate appearances over parts of 5 seasons, his first start since being acquired from Detroit on Monday saw him collect 3 hits, punctuated by a solo home run in the top of the 6th.

“It was surreal,” said Davis reflecting on his home run postgame.

“You do all of this work, you work so hard, and for all of it to pay off, it means a lot for me, my family, my friends.”

The all-around feel-good night for the Fish did not start out as such, though, as Alcantara kicked off his evening by surrendering a leadoff triple to Charlie Blackmon and an ensuing RBI double from Jurickson Profar to give Colorado a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the 1st.

It wouldn’t be until the 4th inning that Miami began to pull away. Yuli Gurriel would deliver his first of two hits when he singled in Luis Arraez to tie the score at 1.

Gurriel would pull off a double steal with Bryan De La Cruz to help plate Miami’s second run of the inning in what made for a funky rundown sequence.

The aforementioned Arraez would plate two in what would be a three-run 5th for the Marlins, raising his season average to .371. The reigning AL Batting champion did have to leave the game in the 7th with was deemed a precautionary move due to a left leg cramp.

One inning following Davis’s home run, Jorge Soler would extend his team-leading home run total to 14 when he clubbed a 437-foot long ball in the top of the 7th. Soler, who has served as the club’s primary DH while playing only sparingly in the outfield, has homered in each of his last four starts in the field.

Of Note

  • At 38 years and 349 days, Yuli Gurriel became the oldest Marlin since Curtis Granderson on 06/26/19 to triple in a game.
  • Davis also became the first player to collect at least 3 hits in his first start in a Marlins uniform since JB Shuck in 2018.
  • Jacob Stallings added two doubles to Miami’s winning effort, making for the fourth time in his career that he collected at least 2 extra-base hits.

Looking Ahead

The Marlins will look to Braxton Garrett (1-2, 4.60) to close out the 4-game set in the Mile High City on a high note. Garrett is coming off his strongest outing of the season, throwing 6.1 innings of 1 hit ball against the Giants on May 20th. Colorado will counter with a southpaw of their own, Kyle Freeland (4-5, 3.88 ERA), as he looks to get his record back to .500. First pitch from Coors Field is slated for 3:10 EST.

Miami Marlins (10) @ Colorado Rockies (2), Win Probability Graph, 24 May 2023