Miami Marlins 11, Tampa Bay Rays 6
Jacob Turner again scuffled but the Miami Marlins bats backed him up Thursday at Tropicana Field. The Marlins completed a four-game Citrus Series sweep over the Tampa Bay Rays with a 11-6 win which saw Giancarlo Stanton blast his National League-leading 17th home run, as well as the MLB debuts for J.T. Realmuto and Justin Bour. The young duo each recorded their first hits and RBI. Casey McGehee was 4-for-5 at the plate and Marcell Ozuna went 3-for-4 with a 2-run homer to help the Marlins record a season-high 17 hits.
The Marlins are back in a tie for first place in the NL East with the Atlanta Braves while the Rays have now dropped ten straight.
Many GPA’s were raised after Thursday’s offense outbreak. On to the Marlins grades:
Giancarlo Stanton, RF: A
2-for-5, 1 HR, 1 R, 2 RBI, 1 SO
Stanton went 2-for-5 with a 2-run homer and two RBI. And he only struck out once! Kudos to Stanton for developing better plate discipline and not be such an all-or-nothing guy as he has for most of his career. It’s easy to see why he has jumped into the top 3 outfielders in the All-Star Game voting; he is batting way above his career average at .314 and the OPS is over 1.000. He hit 24 home runs in all of 2013, and here in the first week of June he has already smacked 17. Stay hot, Giancarlo Stanton.
Marcell Ozuna, CF: A
3-for-5, 1 HR, 3 R, 4 RBI, 2 SO
Ozuna just keeps showing the power and that his two homer performance in 2013 was a fluke. He launched his 11th long ball of the season in the ninth, officially making the game a laugher at 11-6. He also had four RBI on the day. Who would have thought that at this point in the season Christian Yelich would be the only Marlins outfielder to struggle?
Casey McGehee, 3B: A
4-for-5, 4 R
I mean, what else can be said about McGehee’s performance this year? He has only one home run, which is mind-blowing considering the 28 he had in Japan last year, but he has been one of the most productive third basemen around. He was 4-for-5 with a double, scoring four runs and raising his average to .298. What’s even harder to believe is that he had no RBI; it seems like McGehee drives someone in every time he comes to the plate. He also had the Marlins only extra base hit that wasn’t a homer. The team had 14 singles!
J.T. Realmuto, C: B
2-for-5, 3 RBI
Making his big league debut in the wake of Jarrod Saltalamacchia‘s injury, Realmuto had a game to remember. He went 2-for-5 and plated the first three RBI of his career. Realmuto’s first stay in the big leagues will likely be short, so good for him having a nice day at the plate.
Christian Yelich, LF: F
0-for-5, 3 SO
The sophomore slump seems to be in full effect for Yelich. The Marlins leadoff man went 0-for-5 and struck out three times, despite the team scoring 11 runs. If only the Marlins had a true leadoff man, Yelich could slide down the lineup to hopefully take some pressure off himself while he adjusts.
Jacob Turner, SP: D+
5.1 IP, 8 H, 5 ER, 1 BB, 3 K, 2 HR
Like most Marlins fans (I assume), I am getting tired of watching him pitch every fifth day. The Marlins should move him to the pen or trade him, or something. He just can’t get big league pitchers out. But he did get the win. Goodie!
Turner’s ERA now stands at a healthy 5.93. We miss you, Jose Fernandez.
The bats came out to play but the shaky pitching keeps the Marlins from earning an A in this one. Stanton and Ozuna continued their power surge and the team saw contributions from nearly every spot in the lineup. J.T. Realmuto and Justin Bour had pleasant big league debuts, and the Fish are back in first place, four games above .500. Life is good, Marlins fans.