Baseball season is long and weird and full of varying spells during which teams look vastly different from what they looked like the week before. The Miami Marlins are currently enjoying one such spell, and a very positive one, in which they’ve now won five straight and are hitting. The first two weeks of the season, the Marlins couldn’t score runs, the starters weren’t getting deep into games and the bullpen looked like a shell of last year’s counterpart. Now, it’s all clicking, and the Fish have put together a nice little winning streak, including a clean three-game sweep over the preseason National League East favorites.
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What Stood Out
Dee Gordon has been stupid good this season so far and he kept it going with a 4-for-5 day at the plate, including another of his signature infield singles. Sunday the 26-year-old became the first Marlin ever to register 30 hits in the first 20 games of the season. He’s hitting .390 on the year and, granted it’s still a small sample size, the Marlins are getting every bit of the production they expected from their new second baseman.
Adeiny Hechavarria just keeps hitting out of the eighth spot, and he gave the Marlins their first lead of the day with a three-run triple in the fourth inning. This was right after Nats’ starter Gio Gonzalez struck out Michael Morse and J.T. Realmuto after Giancarlo Stanton and Marcell Ozuna both reached base to start the inning.
Hechavarria’s two-out three bagger gave the Marlins a 3-1 lead until the fifth when Giancarlo Stanton missed a home run off the scultpure by about a foot, and had to settle for a triple of his own. Ozuna provided the sacrifice fly to score Stanton, and Ichiro helped with an RBI single in the sixth to plate Miami’s sixth run and chase Gonzalez from the game.
Gonzalez’s final line was five-plus innings, 10 hits, six runs, one walk and eight strikeouts.
Haren looked largely in control, but hit pitch count got up there and his start also lasted only five innings. He allowed two runs on just three hits, including a Bryce Harper second inning solo home run, and whiffed three. Haren has given up six homers in his four starts and his ERA stands at 3.38.
Giancarlo Stanton Bailed Himself Out
The Hechavarria triple almost didn’t happen. With two outs in the fourth Ichiro reached on an infield single and Stanton, who was running from second, took too big a turn around third and got caught in a rundown between third and home plate. But the former high school football standout did a little juke move and was able to somehow get back safely before Wilson Ramos could apply the tag. Hechavarria was the next batter and can thank Stanton for avoiding the brain fart and getting a chance to break the game open. And he did.
The Marlins on Monday welcome the first place Mets into Marlins Park for a three-game weekday series. All three games are at 7:10 PM. The Mets (14-4) are fresh off that 11-game winning streak and perfect 10-0 homestand which included a four-game sweep of the Marlins. The Fish will look for some redemption as they carry a five-game winning streak of their own into the series.
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