The Miami Marlins were looking for the sweep over the Washington Nationals on Wednesday night behind starter Henderson Alvarez. Things looked to be going according to plan as the offense gave Alvarez a 4 run lead and he breezed through a scoreless 5 innings. That’s when things got wacky as Alvarez was removed from the game with arm discomfort and the bullpen promptly coughed up the lead. With the score tied the Marlins were then able to escape a bases loaded no out situation by the Nationals in the eighth without giving up a run and 2 men on base in the ninth. Finally, in the 10th inning the Marlins came up with 4 more runs to take the lead and the win by the score of 8-4.
Let’s get to the Marlins game report card:
Henderson Alvarez, SP: B
5.0 IP, 5 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 2 K
Alvarez was outstanding for 5 innings throwing just 62 pitches and walking none. Unfortunately, he had to exit the game prematurely with an tightness in his arm. The Marlins are in danger of having their organizational pitching depth severely tested if it turns out that Alvarez has to miss any significant time.
Giancarlo Stanton, RF: A
1-for-2, R, 3 BB
The Nationals pitched around Stanton all night, but he stayed patient and was able get on base 4 times on the night. Even though he wasn’t allowed to contribute much at the plate, Stanton continued his excellent defensive season. He doubled a Nats runner off first base after a running grab and threw out another trying to extend a base hit into a double in the bottom of the ninth.
Casey McGehee, 3B: A
4-for-5, 2 R, 1 RBI
McGehee responded to the challenge laid down by the Nats who walked Stanton in front of him 3 times on the night. He stroked 4 base hits on the night including driving in the go ahead run in the 10th inning on a bases loaded single.
2 IP, 4H, 3 BB, 4R, 3 ER, 2K
Handed a 4 run lead to protect in the 6th inning, the front of the Marlins bullpen promptly gave it back by allowing hits, awarding bases on balls and giving up the long ball. The bullpen has been the one area of this team that has struggled this season.
The Marlins got a good, but abbreviated start from Alvarez, timely hitting early and late in the game, and made several good defensive plays, which would normally lead to an easy win. This is the type of game where the front of the bullpen needs to bury the opposition until Cishek can come in to shut the door late. Manager Mike Redmond will need to continue to experiment until he discovers the right combination of relievers to provide a dependable bridge to the closer.